Sandhill Crane Week 24


Sandhill Crane
Two adults and the 24 week old juvenile forage
in the small prairie area next to Tiedeman's Pond.

Sandhill Crane
The juvenile is bigger than either parent, so
it may well be a male. Its crown is changing color.

Sandhill Crane
All three are more alert than in the past, not for any one
thing in particular. Maybe it's the migration thrill ramping up.

Sandhill Crane
As always one generally is studying the surroundings when
the other two are busy with their heads down.

Sandhill Crane
Even the juvenile has guard duty now.

Sandhill Crane
Looking off over the pond at a few Canada Geese
endlessly yakking away as they like doing.

Sandhill Crane
Something over there interesting to more
than one for the moment.

Sandhill Crane
With such a thoughtful stare and scrutiny, it
makes you wonder what's going on in its head.

Sandhill Crane
When heads are down it's easy to tell
what the thoughts of the moment are.

Sandhill Crane
Now the gaze wanders to the nearby hiking trail
busy with talking people and their dogs.
They might be thinking about handouts from one house.

Sandhill Crane
A lot of natural foraging in the muck of the marshy
area and retaining ponds. Crossing in a row to the opposite side.

Sandhill Crane
The juvenile veers off to the right as the
two adults ascend the bank.

Sandhill Crane
A few swivels and concentrated glares from the juvenile,
but nothing edible flickers below the dark surface.

Sandhill Crane
The juvenile followed its parents, but turned at
the edge of the small pond for one last look. No luck.

Sandhill Crane
Breaking the always on watch rule, the adult supposed to
be on sentry instead does a bit of grooming.

Sandhill Crane
After that they head down in the bubbling mud at the
edge of Tiedeman's Pond itself.

Sandhill Crane
This is where the long legs come in handy. They waded in
almost up to their bellies before returning.

Sandhill Crane
More hunting, but not much going on in the food pantry.

Sandhill Crane
More people passing require more stares to be sure
it's still safe.

Sandhill Crane
Now they spend much more of their time studying what's
way off there than foraging, even more so than in the summer.

Sandhill Crane
Off for another try at the edge of Tiedeman's Pond.

Sandhill Crane
That lasted for only a minute. Then all headed back toward
the building just north of the little park on the west side.

Sandhill Crane
The juvenile led the way onto the gravel path.

Sandhill Crane
Pausing at the new textures, they studied things a bit
before crossing toward the condos nearby.

Sandhill Crane
The juvenile still has a white toe nail that it
had all summer, so that hasn't changed yet, if it will?

Sandhill Crane
Maybe go back to the pond. There might be overlooked
prey there. Nope

Sandhill Crane
The juvenile approaches a bird bath to
see if it might have good water or not.

Sandhill Crane
Yes. Then in for a drink at the bird bath at a convenient
height for a young crane. Within a few weeks they'll be
in New Mexico or Texas and the juvenile will be on its own
not too many weeks after that. The next phase in its life...

© Michael Bailey All Rights Reserved; Not for reproduction.
No photograph from this blog may be reproduced or used
in any form or by any means whatsover.

White-crowned Sparrow


White-crowned Sparrow
An adult male foraging in the gravel.

White-crowned Sparrow
A female or first year male.

Cedar Waxwing
Still with breast streaking, a juvenile
grooms itself.

Cedar Waxwing
And there is only one precious berry left.

Chipping Sparrow
Small and shy.

Downy Woodpecker
A female scooting up and down the bark
in search of insects.

Easter Bluebird
Being very shy and hiding in the shadows,
yet talking now and then to reveal itself.

Great Blue Heron
Slowly, slowly stalking the water while
fishing for small golden carp.

Great Blue Heron
In the morning sunlight, a time out on a perch overlooking
a perch overlooking Stricker's Pond.

Hermit Thrush
Dogwood berries, a favorite for
many, slowly disappearing over the days.

Nashville Warbler
A large warbler, just passing through on the way
to a winter home far south outside this country.

Pied-billed Grebe
Sometimes seen with a companion or two,
but for some reason usually alone.

Red-breasted Nuthatch
This year an unusual number of these tiny nuthatches
have invaded the area, delighting homes with birdfeeders.

Red-tailed Hawk
After a very brief pause on a perch at Owen Park in Madison,
a take-off to look for prey in a better spot.

Red-winged Blackbird
This is my territory and I'm
singing to let everyone know.

white-breasted Nuthatch
Working a dead tree while talking
with its distinctive grunts.

Wood Duck
A female by herself as their numbers decline
during their fall migration south.

Yellow-rumped Warbler
One of the last warblers of the fall.

© Michael Bailey All Rights Reserved; Not for reproduction.
No photograph from this blog may be reproduced or used
in any form or by any means whatsover.

Brown Creeper


Brown Creeper
Doing its spiral up the tree, lit
on the side by sunlight, before
starting again at the base of another tree.

Brown Creeper
Sometimes it is just straight up
for a segment before doing the wrap-around.

Red-eyed Vireo
Lurking in the thick leaves of an
Ash Tree as it hunts bugs.

Swamp Sparrow
Rich brown colors and a tendency to
hide in the low grass and bushes.

White-crowned Sparrow
Large, with a distinctive black and white
striped crown, it forages in short grass and gravel.

White-crowned Sparrow
Interesting smudge patterns on the back
of its crown and neck. Fat pin stripes.

White-throated Sparrow
White throat, patches of yellow behind
the bill, and a definite need to hide in bushes.

White-throated Sparrow
But sometimes in moving from one hiding place
to another it pauses out in the open for a good look.

Black-capped Chickadee
Working on a tiny piece of food
snared from a bird feeder below.

Chipping Sparrow
Though everyone chips, this one has a
very distinctive sound, yet it's often silent.

Eastern Bluebird
Off on its own, just born this year,
maybe wondering what the urge to go south is.

Eastern Phoebee
Though at a quick glance, it may seem nondescript,
it has subtle colors with a light yellow on its breast,
unlike the monotonous squawk of its song.

Great Blue Heron
Powering its way across Stricker's Pond
in the dim light before sunrise.

Gray Catbird
For a shy bird, they talk a lot, and in
great variety. Always elegant in shades of gray.

Gray Catbird
Thinking about the Dogwood berries, while its
rusty brown rump peaks through other feathers.

Lincoln's Sparrow
Small and usually hidden behind twigs and grass
when it thinks it's being watched.

Lincoln's Sparrow
Prairie grass glowing behind, sumac in front,
it shows off its distinctly patterned vest.

Northern Cardinal
In the process of mashing a berry
in its powerful bill.

Ring-billed Gull
With a silent, floating flight, they often
sneak past unseen unless they happen to call.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Even smaller than a wren, they sometimes burst
out in a melodious quick song as cute as they look.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Very flitty, it tilts its head briefly to show off
its ruby namesake before flitting off and away.

Red-tailed Hawk
Perched briefly, hoping for a stray rabbit below,
and soon off as none were careless at the moment.

Sedge Wren
A chatter and partial song as it does its
constant hide and peek with everything.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
A bit of red showing on its crown as it
calls and works on a tree before trying another.

© Michael Bailey All Rights Reserved; Not for reproduction.
No photograph from this blog may be reproduced or used
in any form or by any means whatsover.