Tuesday, March 11, 2014

a Michigan intermission

more of a hockey intermission, we're at least 2/3 of the way through the CR pics

And while I've been back for a month, yesterday was only the 2nd day that I've shot bloggable pics (probably should have interrupted with the others but they'll get up eventually).

Rhoda and I have been checking in on the solitaire on about a weekly basis.  Yesterday instead of being pinned to its feeding juniper it was out with the bluebird flock.  I've never approached the feeding tree very closely, but with the flock you could somewhat try to work in front of them.  Given that it had room to roam I didn't feel as bad about slowly working up to it either.

 It was still partial to juniper berries though

Showing off his wingstripe...

The bird frequently rests surprisingly close to the ground

 though almost always in the shade.  It didn't rest in the sun very much at all.

Probably the best shot of the wingstripe, a pretty classic solitaire pose.

Last year I worked pretty hard trying to find Northern Shrike and gave up when Red-winged Blackbirds came back, making it a lot harder to screen for lone passerines in trees.
This year I've made no effort whatsoever (and my year list is less than what it has been by the end of most January's), and Rhoda finds one a few days after the blackbirds come back.  Most surprising of all was that I was able to successfully chase a shrike (though admittedly it took two tries, at the beginning and then the end of a trip to South Bend with Ginger).

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