Tag Archives: Birds in Flight

Bird Chaos at Bird Key

Hundreds of birds nested on Bird Key this summer and the land and sky were full of activity on this July day.

Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve
Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve

Most of the birds on land seen here are Brown Pelicans, the smaller white ones are chicks. The chicks were awkwardly walking, but not yet flying.  There were lots of Laughing Gulls that provided constant noise, and a few White Ibis mixed in.

Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve
Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve

On the outer edge of the island, the open Atlantic Ocean beyond, a sand bar has formed that was popular spot for preening.

Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve
Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve

Taken from a boat at Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve
Between Kiawah Island and Folly Beach, SC

July 12, 2021

Brown Pelicans Off Duty

On our way out to Bird Key to see the Brown Pelican chicks we spotted several small groups of adults flying to sand bars.

Brown Pelicans
Brown Pelicans

According to our guide the adults assign a baby-sitter Pelican at the rookery then find a place to rest.

Brown Pelicans
Brown Pelicans

They certainly picked a beautiful, if sparse, location.

Brown Pelicans
Brown Pelicans

From a boat, Kiawah River, Charleston County, SC
July 12, 2021

Turkey Vulture, Flying Low

This is the same Turkey Vulture I’ve featured in recent posts as part of the the educational and flight demonstration program at the Center for Birds of Prey, this time showing off his flight skills.

Turkey Vulture
Turkey Vulture Ready to Go!

Turkey Vultures are impressive with their flight skills, easily making sharp turns, using their wings to full advantage.

Turkey Vulture
Turkey Vulture In Flight

It was very cool to see this one glide just above the ground, with seemingly little effort.

Turkey Vulture
Turkey Vulture In Flight In Flight

The Center for Birds of Prey,  Awanda, SC
June 24, 2021

Previous Posts:

Turkey Vulture, Wings Out

Turkey Vulture, Up Close

Gulls Took To The Air

Danger, danger, fly, fly!

Can you spot the Eagle?

Birds in the Air over Bird Key, Stono
Birds in the Air, Eagle is about 1/4 of way in from the left, one of the top birds

This island has a lot of advantages for nesting birds, but it is not without risk. This time the Eagle appeared to leave without a meal.

Birds in the Air over Bird Key, Stono
Birds in the Air over Bird Key, Stono, Mostly Laughing Gulls

About a half hour later it happened again. We were further away from the action and I didn’t capture the Eagle, but this view gives an idea of how many birds are nesting on this little island. And how unconcerned the Pelicans appeared.

Birds in the Air over Bird Key, Stono
Birds in the Air over Bird Key, Stono

Taken from a boat at Bird Key Stono Heritage Preserve
Between Kiawah Island and Folly Beach, SC

July 12, 2021

Naturally Framed Owl

Framing of a scene by a tree can be good, lending a natural composition element to a bird image, like this Barred Owl.

Barred Owl Framed By Two Tree Trunks
Barred Owl Framed By Two Tree Trunks

It was still good as he swiveled his head to check out something above us.

Barred Owl Framed By Two Tree Trunks
Barred Owl Framed By Two Tree Trunks

But then as he bent down I knew…

Barred Owl Framed By Two Tree Trunks
Barred Owl Framed By Two Tree Trunks

…the framing would keep me from catching the action.

I did get kind of a cool picture of his powerful talons.

Barred Owl Framed By Two Tree Trunks
Barred Owl, Mostly His Feet, Framed By Two Tree Trunks