Monthly Archives: September 2021

September 28, 2021

Another duck to add to the list of winter waterfowl that have returned to the Bear Creek Greenbelt:

Blue-winged Teal

The weather began changing this afternoon from hot and sunny to cool and cloudy.  I saw a flock of a hundred or more Common Grackles, as well as a much smaller flock of American Robins.  Here’s a Northern Flicker.  With its mouth full, it can’t make a sound!

Northern Flicker

September 27, 2021

After work I saw a single hummingbird on our back deck, looking for nectar in the salvia.  For the past week or so, I’ve seen only one hummingbird, sporadically, and not every day.

On my afternoon walk in the Bear Creek Greenbelt, something big and brown streaked by in the sky.  I watched it alight in a cottonwood tree.  A Great Horned Owl!

Great Horned Owl

There are still a few dragonflies around–a couple that I recognize are American Rubyspots and Pale Snaketails.  Here’s another one that’s new to me:

Great Spreadwings

Great Spreadwing (male)

September 23, 2021

After work I walked by myself in the Bear Creek Greenbelt.  I found this American Wigeon, accompanied by three male Mallards, in a small pond.  It’s the first time since February that I’ve seen an American Wigeon in the greenbelt.  It appears that the “winter waterfowl” are on their way back.

American Wigeon

September 21, 2021

After work I took a walk by myself in the Bear Creek Greenbelt.  It was sunny but cool–around 60 degrees.

Although few birds vocalized and even fewer made themselves visible, I did see two Green-winged Teal . . . for the first time since last winter.

Green-winged Teal

Bear Creek ran fast and high for most of the spring and summer.  Lately, the flow has slowed, and now the water level is very low.  Here’s a Belted Kingfisher perched above the creek, looking intently for a meal:

Belted Kingfisher

A dive, a splash, and a couple of seconds later:

Belted Kingfisher with crawfish

September 11, 2021

This afternoon I walked around the horseshoe pond at Stone House in the Bear Creek Greenbelt.  Here’s a young Swainson’s Hawk:

Swainson’s Hawk

Swainson’s Hawk

Here’s a Wood Duck in eclipse:

Wood Duck

There are still a few dozen Barn Swallows:

Barn Swallow

And turtles!

Red-eared Slider

Red-eared Slider (apparently a melanistic individual)

September 10, 2021

By the end of summer, the hummingbirds in our back yard are used to my being outside on the deck, and they allow close approach.  They feed all day long, starting before dawn, and they constantly chase each other.  Here’s one on its guard:

Black-chinned Hummingbird

After work I took a walk in the Bear Creek Greenbelt.  Here’s another end-of-summer shot:  a Say’s Phoebe holding its wings away from its body.

Say’s Phoebe

A Black-crowned Night Heron was in the same spot as yesterday:

Black-crowned Night Heron

Over by Stone House a Belted Kingfish had caught a crawfish:

Belted Kingfisher

September 9, 2021

After work I took a walk in the Bear Creek Greenbelt . . . Manky Mallard (e.g., Mallard hybrid) is back!

Manky Mallard (on right) . . . with a male who’s just beginning to get green feathers back on his head (her mate?).

I caught this Black-crowned Night Heron above Bear Creek with its mouth wide open:

Black-crowned Night Heron

And with its mouth shut:

Black-crowned Night Heron

Dragonflies are still around:

Pale Snaketail

In the back yard . . . cheepers by the dozen??

Got Bushtits?