Category Archives: Birds

Colorful Barnyard Chickens

Along with the heritage breed Coastal Sheep that have free run during the day at Middleton Place there is a small mixed flock of colorful chickens.

Barnyard Chickens
Barnyard Chickens, Perched on Sheep Pen Dividers

The  Sheep had just been penned for the evening and needed a bit of grain to induce them into their quarters.

Barnyard Chickens, Sheep In Their Pen
Barnyard Chickens, Sheep In Their Pen

The chickens were well aware there might be droppage available for pecking.

Barnyard Chickens, Rooster Crowing
Barnyard Chickens, Rooster Crowing

They also seemed to know not to get amongst the sheep until they settled down,

Barnyard Chickens, Rooster Preening
Barnyard Chickens, Rooster Preening

A fourth fancy-looking fellow joined the crowd on the safety of the divider.

Barnyard Chickens
Barnyard Chickens

The big rooster decided to move on, dropping into an empty pen that is awaiting the birth of lambs, expected any day now.

Barnyard Rooster in Flight, or Glide
Barnyard Rooster in Flight, or Glide

Middleton Place
March 30, 2021

Speedy Tree Swallows

I realized the American Avocet Pair was moving further and further from me, so focused instead on trying to capture a Tree Swallow. It was a grey, sunless day, so the iridescence of their wings was also dull.

Tree Swallow In Flight
Tree Swallow In Flight

A small flock of them were feeding over a pond, zipping in unpredictable patterns over the water.

Tree Swallow In Flight
Tree Swallow In Flight

I’m sure they were capturing insects, but that action was undetectable.

Tree Swallow In Flight
Tree Swallow In Flight

They often swooped near each other, but never crash.

Tree Swallows In Flight
Tree Swallows In Flight

Last second change of flight plan was pretty common, showing off flight skills.

Tree Swallow In Flight
Tree Swallow In Flight

Peacock Announcement

Peacocks only seem to have one volume when they have something to say: high!

Peacock and Daffodils
Peacock and Daffodils

Me, more genteelly: My apologies for any comments you’ve left in the last few days that I have not acknowledged. My WordPress site has had a hiccup and some comments have gotten left out of the Comments list. Fortunately there are other ways to find them, now that I know.

 

Kingfisher Eludes Me

Acutally, he flew almost into me as I was watching a Great Blue Heron standing at a water trunk. We both jumped and he made a speedy exit to this tree top down the trail.

Treetop Kingfisher
Treetop Kingfisher

I inched my way along the trail towards the tree, the Kingfisher zipped back to the spot he originally wanted on the trunk.  This gave him a close view of the Ashley River just beyond the trunk and the rice field pond that now was between us.

Kingfisher on Trunk
Kingfisher on Trunk

Land and Turn

Pelicans don’t look that agile, but you can see by the landing trail in the water that this fellow executed a 90 degree turn as he was hitting the water. I suspect he saw something for lunch!

Brown Pelican Landing
Brown Pelican Landing

We are on day two without internet service but I can log into WP admin with our spotty cell phone data service. I found this post in my drafts from February 2018. I have no idea what my plan for it had been but this seems like a good time to finish the post. I’m still amazed at the way Pelicans can fly and dive.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

The Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers are industrious and fun to watch when feeding in plain view.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

This one was in the drinking phase of his routine, from holes previously made in the bark.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Holding still on a short break I got a nice profile view showing off that sturdy beak and beautiful color pattern.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

They tend to circle the tree, moving up and down, enough to make the photographer dizzy guessing where they will reappear.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

Red-bellied Woodpecker Pair

I didn’t have a great view when I first spotted this pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers. I was pretty sure the one on the right zipped into that hole while I maneuvered around the tree between us.

Pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers in Tree
Pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers in Tree

I watched for him to come out before turning my attention to the other one as he was pecking on the tree. Then I could hear the second one calling.

Red-bellied Woodpecker in Tree
Red-bellied Woodpecker in Tree

The question then was to keep watching the first subject or risk missing some action there and look for the second. I succumbed to looking and he eventually popped up behind this branch. Or was there the whole time and I just didn’t notice.

Red-bellied Woodpecker in Tree
Red-bellied Woodpecker in Tree

He quickly flew off. Meanwhile the first one had moved a little higher, paused a moment, then also flew off.

Red-bellied Woodpecker in Tree
Red-bellied Woodpecker in Tree