Category Archives: Birds

Sticky Beaks

Fellow blogger Ms. Liz, (ExploringColour.wordpress.com/) recently introduced me to the New Zealand term “sticky beak” used for an inquisitive and prying person.

Our chat came immediately to mind when I saw this group of barnyard chickens trying to peak through the slats into the coop where a few other chickens had been confined.

Chickens Gathered at Pen
Chickens Gathered at Pen

This chicken might have been as nosey but was exploring on his own.

Plymouth Rock Chicken Down the Lane
Plymouth Rock Chicken Down the Lane

Pea Hen

A Pea Hen was perched on the wall around the Middleton Place Stable Yard late one afternoon.

Pea Hen on Brick Wall
Pea Hen on Brick Wall

I hadn’t seen or heard any Pea Fowl at Middleton this spring and had wondered if they still hosted any. They roam free and easily fall victim to any number of predators.

Pea Hen on Brick Wall
Pea Hen on Brick Wall

Looking around I only saw this one dapper looking hen, no Peacocks. Other years a half dozen or more were all around the stable area.

Pea Hen
Pea Hen, Showing Off Her Neck

May 2, 2021

Red-headed Woodpecker

The Red-headed Woodpecker is a bird that I have only glimpsed, generally flying away from me. Then a few weeks ago I saw two in less than ten minutes!

Red-headed Woodpecker
Red-headed Woodpecker

The second one, perhaps a mate to the first, tormented Ted and me with knocking that we could not locate. Who knew they could make such a racket inside a tree?

Red-headed Woodpecker
Red-headed Woodpecker

Once out of the cavity he stuck to the shady side of the tree.

Red-headed Woodpecker
Red-headed Woodpecker

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