Lots of Bird Encounters

After saying goodbye to my brother, Miles, I looked in on the Red-Shouldered Hawk fledgling at the American River Bend Park, and also briefly encountered his mother who did NOT like me hanging around her baby’s tree.  She screeched at me and then sky-rocketed over me.  The baby is almost fully fledged.  He’ll probably be flying by next week.  I also saw the Wrens, Tree Swallows, and a couple of pairs of Western Bluebirds at their nests.  I thought I was getting video of one of the bluebird nests but when I got home I realized I didn’t have it.  The nest was low enough that I was hoping the camera could see inside of it and catch a glimpse of the babies. I could hear them chirping… but I must not have pressed the record button hard enough.  Dang!  I then found a Mourning Dove nest tucked away in the “elbow” of a tree.  It was camouflaged so well that I didn’t see it until it was right in front of my face.  Mama was sitting on it, perfectly still, perfectly quiet.

Along the river, I came across a large flock of Turkey Vultures.  Some were sitting on a large flat rock in the water; others were up in the trees in front of me and over my head.  Most of them flew off when I approached — shy creatures — but there were a couple of brave ones that stayed around long enough for me to get some photos of them.  While I was watching them, they were watching a family of Canada Geese swimming along the river bank: two adults, two fuzzy silver-gold goslings, and two fledglings that were just starting to come into their adult coloring.  The vultures didn’t bother them.

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While I was walking, another photographer came along and said there was a Cooper’s Hawk nest by the horseshoe pit area, so I drove over there, but I couldn’t find the nest.  That ARE always well-hidden though. While I was there, I took some photos of a pair of male Wild Turkeys that were napping in the shade before I headed home – and pretty much collapsed for the day.