Exploring Nature One Step At A Time

Posts tagged “Arkansas Birds

Tiny Woodpeckers Beneath the Late Summer Leaves

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“Time stills beneath the canopy of leaves cradled in Natures song.” ~ Lee Hiller

Love to ALL!
Lee


Soft Light of Morning Reveals Tiny Beings

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Morning has my favorite photography magic hour. Luckily in the Hot Springs National Park it generally lasts longer than 60 minutes depending on which mountain we are hiking.  The small mammals, insects and birds love the magical light too!

Love to ALL!
Lee


How I became a Birder

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In 2009 when I began my foray into Nature photography I was not a birder.  When I began hiking in Hot Springs National Park during the winter of 2009-2010 Birds became my companions.  Even in the harshest weather Woodpeckers, Cardinals, Sparrows, Mockingbirds and Pine Warblers were with me along each trail.  In those early days of hiking I only had my 5-year-old Sony Cybershot and each clear shot of a moving bird felt like a miracle.  I used to call my camera the “Magic Box” as often I had no clue what I had captured until I returned home and scoured the Internet for bird identification.

To get better shots of the many beautiful birds I would stand out-of-sight in the pagoda on Hot Springs Mountain.  One morning in February of 2010 as I was looking out over the valley when I heard loud squawking on the lawn below.  I glance down and saw a flock of Robins grabbing at seeds and in the melee were smaller Birds holding their own. The Lovely Creatures of the Forest on the Hot Springs Trails  I realized they were the same type of Bird I had seen briefly in January.

The exotic markings on the Cedar Waxwing made me take a second look all Birds.  I began to see them all with a greater appreciation for their unique and individual beauty. Nature’s winged artistry.

Love to ALL!
Lee

 


New Forest Friend – Eastern Wood Pewee

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I am an inconsistent whistler.  Until today the birds I could imitate with answering results were Hawks, Mockingbirds and Thrashers.  The later two basically taking pity on my lame attempts, plus they imitate everything. I saw a Hawk fly over and did my classic impersonation.  Instead of an answer from above a slightly different call rang out from the Trees to my left.  I scanned the canopy and came up with no sighting.  In an attempt to find the bird with the clear voice  I did my best imitation.  To my amazement it answered back getting closer with each exchange.  In the fading light I was  finally able to spot the sweet little olive brown bird and took several photos.  after a few minutes of musical exchange it flew down toward the trail, turned and hovered within inches my face.  It sang, I sang and then it returned to the branch high above my shoulder.  I thanked the lovely Eastern Wood Pewee for a lovely duet in the fading light.

Love to ALL!
Lee

 


Beautiful Beings On An Early Soul Day Hike

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July is the birthday month for both myself the 4th and my husband the 16th.  So we celebrate our special Soul Day on the 10th of July.  This year we took an early morning hike and were blessed with the beauty of seeing many beings in the Forest.

Breakfast was stuffed in the mouth of a chipmunk as above a pair of warblers (Vireos I think) collected nesting materials.

A lovely Whitetail Doe pick at us from the brush then stepped fully out into the open.  We did not want to startle her as it was clear she is nursing at least one fawn.  She turned several times on the trail pausing to eat and then leap up a small rise.  I sprinted down the trail once he was gone to a rock look out and saw her in the ravine below with a fawn and a juvenile Doe.

Near the end of our hike a flash of red in the pines alerts us to the presence of a family of Summer Tanagers.  A vibrant male in transitional colors, a tiny buff green chick and a female in her green.

It was a perfect start to our Soul Day!

Love to ALL!
Lee


Twin Fawns and Beautiful Birds

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Often we are focused on the obvious like a Male Summer Tanager as he distracts us from seeing his mate.  Female Tanagers are a pretty green and usually  blend into the dense spring and summer foliage.  It was a blessing to look up and see a Lovely female Summer Tanager a few branches away from her bright red mate.

A week ago I saw a flash of red and gold diving between the Trees at the top of of North Mountain. It looked like a tiny fireball darting from limb to limb.  Finally I got a glimpse of a vibrant juvenile Male Scarlet Tanager.  His transition from yellowish green to red gives him a dazzling fiery appearance.

As we came out of the trail head and on to the road I spotted a Whitetail Doe and her twin Fawns.  It was the perfect end to a marvelous evening hike.

Love to ALL!
Lee


The Wildlife Comes Out At night

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As the heat and humidity rise we have begun enjoying lovely early evening hiking.   We were delighted to see a flock of juvenile Robins that still had speckling on their chests and a lovely Whitetail Deer stepping out onto thepath ahead of us. A colorful Indigo Bunting and Summer Tanager sang beautiful songs above us in the Trees. Fungi and Wildflowers painted the Forest floor attracting mollusks (snail) and Insects (False Bee).

There is no better Soul therapy than escaping in to the Mountains and communing with the Trees and beings who call the park home.

Special thanks to my husband Rick for spot the lovely Whitetail Doe quickly enough so I could get these photographs without startling her.

Love to ALL!
Lee


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