Growing up a skimmer

In mid-July the baby black skimmers were growing up quickly and heading out on their own. Many were already down at the water line and practicing their wing flaps.

There were still a few younger ones including the one on the left with a young royal tern and much older juvenile skimmer on the right.

Soon the babies will start flying and leave along with the parents and then all that’s left on the beaches are those annoying laughing gulls, looking to steal some kid’s sandwich or chips.

A small part of the skimmer army, lined up along the water.

Photographing New Zealand

Birds and birders at Fort Desoto

The resident long billed curlew was prancing around in front of a large group of birders. He’s almost too tame. He was walking so close to people that they were backing up to take pictures of him

Piping plover staring at something.

An osprey flew close to this huge flock of birds and spooked them into flying around. It was mostly laughing gulls, skimmers, royal terns and sandwich terns. I know these birds need their rest but it was a nice sight to see.

A small sampling of the large flocks of birds resting on beach. I didn’t notice until I got home and cropped the shot that I caught a fish jumping up in the back of the picture.

Just a few of the birders that were there on a recent Saturday morning. They were enjoying the big group of birds resting on the low tide spit in the north beach lagoon.

The above could be: a) male yellow warbler (common here lately and has the brown stripes on the chest.), b) Cape May warbler (one was sighted minutes earlier, adult male winter has the same colors) or c)something totally different.  Several seasoned birders there had different opinions on what this was.

I was told this was a first year male common yellowthroat warbler.

This was another one that was with the one above. I think both are same.

I almost didn’t go. I had been to Fort Desoto several weeks in a row with little luck. I decided to try one last time for that jaeger and I had several friends that would be there on an audubon walk. I headed first to the gulf fishing pier and found the jeager pretty quick. After taking a few hundred shots of it, I headed to the woods to catch up with the group.  The woods didn’t have a large assortment of little birds. Just the few above. Then we headed up to the north beach marsh where tons of birds were resting. It turned out to be a beautiful morning even though I didn’t get too many migrating birds.

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