One Lucky Fella!

This gray squirrel is one lucky fella
with a furry tail for his umbrella!

A tail that is bushy, a tail that is swishy,
A tail that reminds me of dandelion wishies!

And when it is sunny, this tail is his shade –
this seed stealing rodent sure has it made!

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Who Stole the Cookie from the Cookie Jar?

Do you remember the old childhood chant that begged the question, “Who stole the cookie from the cookie from the cookie jar?”

Well, I’m pretty sure I know the answer!

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Scrub and Grub

This Blue Jay stopped in to sit and soak in the fountain.

After his scrub (which left him drenched, drippy, and looking dirtier than when he started) he flew up to the deck rail to grab some grub.

Then, with his feathers washed and his stomach filled, he found himself a sunny spot to perch while he dried off.

These guys are always one of my favorite birds to photograph.

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Happy Mother’s Jay

Happy Mother’s Jay!

Okay…so…I could make up a story about how Blue Jays are my Mom’s favorite birds, but they’re not…nor do I think this particular Blue Jay is a mother…honestly, this picture has nothing to do with Mother’s Day, but I liked it and today is Mother’s Day and I’m a Mom, so I decided that was reason enough to post it!

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The Joy Of Beauty Shared

I love taking pictures of my backyard birds, but I also enjoy getting beyond the backyard – and one of my favorite places to go is Cochran Shoals.  This park has a path that is sandwiched between the Chattahoochee River on one side and a series of trails that meander through swamps and tree-filled fields on the other side.  You never know what you’ll see when you visit, but you never come away disappointed.

Earlier this week, my daughter and I paid a visit to this nature lover’s paradise. We enjoyed visiting with some Mallards, an Indigo Bunting, and a Great Blue Heron who was standing on his skinny legs in the center of the river, patiently waiting for the right moment to spear a fish, but the highlight of the morning was coming across this Yellow-crowned Night Heron.

Isn’t he amazing?  He looks like a crime-fighting superhero with a bit of a dark side.

A fellow photographer had spotted him and waved us over to get some shots.  (May I just pause and say that I have found that a sweet camaraderie exists among nature photographers; the joy of discovering beauty seems to be enhanced by the joy of sharing it.)  As I stood and watched this handsome Heron, something in the murky water caught his attention, and with a quick step and a flutter of the wings, he went to investigate.

Steadily he crept along, one foot slowly following another.

He seemed unconcerned about our presence, but when two rather boisterous ladies came along and (loudly) asked about him, he turned around and headed to a less visible area.

I was so blessed that the friendly photographer shared the beautiful bird he encountered with us; and I am doubly blessed to get to share it with you. 🙂

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Fight or Flight

This Gray Catbird has been making an appearance lately, but he certainly hasn’t been relaxed!  Every time I’ve seen him so far he’s been in that “fight or flight” stance, which I’m pretty sure we can blame on the resident Mockingbirds – his not so friendly family members!

Usually, the Catbirds come for the fresh water, but occasionally they (like almost every other backyard bird) help themselves to a bit of Bark Butter.

Some find these fellows rather dull in their appearance, but I think they look elegant – as if they are all decked on in a charcoal tux.  And besides, if you were to get a peek at their velvety red undergarments you would surely join me in finding them fancy.

These birds are the type that you usually hear their presence long before you see them; their call, a cross between a cat’s meow and a baby’s cry, is quite distinctive.  Still, I guess they don’t want to be totally predictable, as they also do a mighty fine imitation of a croaking frog.

Although the Catbirds don’t show up on a daily basis, I always enjoy their presence when they do decide to stop by.

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A Pileated Pop In

This Pileated Woodpecker popped in this morning.  He was on the ground in the backyard, pecking at a rotted tree stump, hoping to find some bugs for breakfast.

He (you can tell it’s a male by the Cherry Koolaid mustache) is yet another red head that I hope becomes a regular visitor!  Hmmm…maybe I should strap a dead stump to the deck right next to the Bark Butter branch so I can get a better picture!

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