This is another bird that flew in right over my head while I was watching the Great Blue Herons work on their nests. I’m pretty sure it is a Pine Warbler, but there are a number of similar yellow warblers making my ID iffy.
He landed on a strand of hanging Spanish Moss and gave it a couple of pokes.
Not finding anything, he flitted a little further from me,
My view wasn’t as good but he treated me to an acrobatic display.
Secretive is a word that Cornell Lab’s AllAboutBirds uses to describe the behavior of many sparrows. The song birds often keep a layer of branches or undergrowth between them and a would be photographer.
Secretive as he was, zipping in and out of the reeds at the edge of the path along the edge of the old rice field, I did get a few good shots.
The yellow around his eye points to a Savannah Sparrow or a Swamp Sparrow. Or it could be one of the 30 other Sparrow variations listed on their website. On the Song Sparrow listing they say:
Don’t let the bewildering variety of regional differences this bird shows across North America deter you…
I am deterred from proper identification but not the photograph.
It looks a lot like the Gnatchatcher drawing in the Peterson Field Guide and less like the photos on Cornell’s All About Birds website. The eye ring points to a Vireo.
Either way, it was a perky energetic bird that mostly stayed hidden by branches of the trees he was inspecting. A dead limb let me get a few clear shots.
A flash of the tail and he was gone.
I’ve been calling these small birds “Song Birds” but have learned while trying to identify this bird that as members of the order Passeriformes they are “Perching Birds.” The arrangement of their toes, with three pointing forward and one backward, facilitates perching. Somehow I’ve been skipping over that in my bird ID activities.
The USS Yorktown (CV-10) is covered with attractive nooks and crannies if you are a bird. This includes the twelve historic aircraft on display on the flight deck.
Grackles were particularly abundant this week, using all openings for their homes.
An Osprey nest is perched in the tower. I hope it is a little sturdier than it appears here, at the top of the ladder.
A small flock of House Finches was perching off the edges of the flight deck on safety netting. I wasn’t able to see where they might be nesting as they zipped back and forth, somewhere below the edge of the deck.
The USS Yorktown (CV-10) is the centerpiece of Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum, Mount Pleasant, SC. Towed to this spot in 1975 the Yorktown itself is a museum and additionally houses a number of exhibits associated with its history dating back to World War II.
Northern Cardinals have a wide range across much of the United States east of the Rocky Mountains and down into Mexico and northern Central America. I frequently see them but rarely get a good shot.
This male Northern Cardinal was singing loud and clear in a tree above me but I just couldn’t spot him. I expected him to fly away as two people approached from the opposite direction. They could hear, and see, him, and seeing my dilemma kindly pointed him out.
This Chickadee was zipping around in the tree line and surprised me when he landed very close. Too close to get him all in focus before he flitted away.
I watched him go in a hole in a dead tree branch. He spent some time enlarging the hole, paused again for a look around, and then flew away. I waited but he did not return. I’ve been by the branch a few times since then and don’t see any sign of activity.
I’m calling it a Carolina Chickadee based on Cornell’s explanation that the range of the Carolina and Black Capped versions do not overlap. They also say there are differences in their voices, but my ear is not that good to distinguish a “a four-noted song, and a faster chick-a-dee call.”