Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Deep snow Solitaire

Neither Rhoda nor I could resist attempting birding after the recent storm and cold snap.  We figured the Solitaire corner of Warren Dunes would be sheltered, getting out there couldn't be that bad could it? Well.  The snow was thigh deep in places, and the rest of the blow out was, well, pretty blown through with wind.  The bird's juniper was pretty covered with snow.  It looked pretty bleak and I was actually heading back when Rhoda, far more dauntless than me, texted she had the bird.

Sure enough, Townsend's Solitaire.
 It spent most of its time tucked down pretty low before working its way back over to its juniper.  It was giving a clear tee-tee-tee call that was fairly unique, somewhat the quality of a veery's call but much higher pitched (and obviously given in series).  I'm not sure that I've heard this bird vocalize before.

Most of the birds in the blowout were Tree Sparrows.  This pic isn't great, but it gives some sense of the blowing snow.

 The above 2 pics were on the way in, the bottom one on the way out (I forgot to change the settings on the camera from backlit shaded solitaire which weren't ideal for frontlit full sun with bonus reflected snow light).  It would have been a decent pic otherwise...

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