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September 17, 2006 [LINK / comment]
Green violet ear comes to Iowa
My brother John responded to a rare bird alert in Sioux City, Iowa -- a Green violet ear, which is a kind of hummingbird that normally lives in highland areas from central Mexico as far south as Bolivia. After waiting for a half hour or so, his patience -- and that of Monica! -- was amply rewarded, as this fine photograph attests. So how did this little guy end up several thousand miles north of his normal range? Maybe he was looking for the Field of Dreams. (Is this Heaven?) Ah, the mysteries of Nature...
UPDATE: Diana Pesek, a bird watcher from Iowa who was visiting this area a few months ago, saw my e-mail news alert and replied:
We had one [Green violet ear] last year over on my side of the state that stayed for about a week, coming to a feeder at a couple's farm home near Waterloo in northeast-central Iowa...
Could it be the same individual? A nonconforming rugged individualist, perhaps, or just defective navigational skills?
Afton Mountain hawk watch
I finally made it up to the hawk watch at Rockfish Gap / Afton Mountain this afternoon, after a regrettably long absence. While the human company was plentiful and friendly -- Brenda Tekin, Gordy Adamski, and a number of new folks -- the number of raptors we observed was quite low. After a couple hours I drove along the crest of the Blue Ridge on Route 610, but didn't see much there, either. Back in Staunton late in the afternoon, I went to Bell's Lane to see if that Yellow-bellied flycatcher was still there. It wasn't, but there were several dozen other noisy songbirds, to my surprise. Here's today's list, with rough estimates of how many of each I saw, segregated according to place, in rough chronological order:
- Broad-winged hawks (12)
- Cooper's hawk
- Red-tailed hawks (8)
- Bald eagle
- Downy woodpecker
- Hairy woodpecker
- Hummingbirds (2)
- Cedar waxwings (8)
Rt. 610 - Blue Ridge
- Sharp-shinned hawk
- Broad-winged hawk
- Scarlet tanagers (2 F/J)
- Black and white warbler
- Pine warblers (2)
- Brown thrashers (8)
- Rose-breasted grosbeak! (F/J)
- Flickers (3)
- Downy woodpecker
- Red-bellied woodpeckers (4)
- Nighthawks! (2)
- Plus many catbirds, mockingbirds, etc.
Also, there were many Monarch butterflies at each place I went.
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 18 Sep 2006, 12: 21 PM
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Hits on this page (single blog post) since July 2, 2007:
Culture & Travel
Science & Technology
This (or that) year's
January 7, 2006 ~ DeLay gives up majority leader post
January 12, 2006 ~ Alito withstands Dems' "torture"
January 16, 2006 ~ Michelle Bachelet wins in Chile
January 19, 2006 ~ Views on Iran's nuclear ambitions
January 24, 2006 ~ Fallout from Canada's election
January 31, 2006 ~ Second (& third) thoughts on Iran
February 1, 2006 ~ The State of the Union, 2006
February 8, 2006 ~ D.C. Council votes "yes," but...
February 18, 2006 ~ Checks and balances in wartime
February 22, 2006 ~
Neocons & Neolibs: chastened alike
February 28, 2006 ~
The Dubai Ports World uproar
March 14, 2006 ~ New D.C. baseball stadium unveiled
March 24, 2006 ~ In the footsteps of France?
April 7, 2006 ~ Immigration compromise fails
May 16, 2006 ~ Bush militarizes Mexican border
June 6, 2006 ~ Alan Garcia triumphs, once again
June 9, 2006 ~
Zarqawi: The death of a terrorist
July 3, 2006 ~
Election in Mexico: too close to call
July 5, 2006 ~ North Korea goes ballistic
July 28, 2006 ~ Garcia prepares to lead Peru, again
August 4, 2006 ~ Israel invades Hezbolland
September 6, 2006 ~ "Crunchy conservatives": for real?
September 25, 2006 ~ Nationalists thwart conservation
October 3, 2006 ~ Nationals: Year in review
October 29, 2006 ~ Virginia's marriage amendment
November 7, 2006 ~ The people render their verdict
November 8, 2006 ~ Republicans lose big time
November 9, 2006 ~ Allen concedes / Election post-mortem
November 13, 2006 ~ Toward consensus on Iraq?
December 1, 2006 ~ Realism and our goals in Iraq
December 6, 2006 ~ Latin America & U.S. trade policy
December 8, 2006 ~ Iraq Study Group reports
December 22, 2006 ~ Yuletide political roundup
Blog highlights have been compiled for the years 2010-2012 thus far, and eventually will be compiled for earlier years, back to 2002.
The "home made" blog organization system that I created was instituted on November 1, 2004, followed by several functional enhancements in subsequent years. I make no more than one blog post per day on any one category, so some posts may cover multiple news items or issues. Blog posts appear in the following (reverse alphabetical) order, which may differ from the chronological order in which the posts were originally made:
- Wild birds (LAST)
- Science & Technology
- Latin America
- Culture & Travel
- Canaries ("Home birds")
- Baseball (FIRST)
Also see: My blog practices.
Blog errata (Nobody's perfect.)