Thursday, January 03, 2008

It's like my birthday is a gift that keeps on giving...you know, kinda like herpes.

As far as birding is concerned, it felt my my birthday was today instead of yesterday.

Today's birding, though short, was very sweet.
Birdchick said a long time ago that her goal was to see at least one wild raptor a day.
And today, I saw FIVE raptor species. FIVE.
1. The short-eared owls at Armleder Park:
one short ear in flight
I have figured out that there is something wrong with my camera. It's not a setting thing, or something I am doing wrong. Ever since I got it back after getting the lens motor fixed (right before Cape May) it hasn't been able to focus when I go in for a close zoom on a distant object (the birds, dammit, the BIRDS!). I used to get really nice pictures.
See that speck? That's a short-eared owl.


two short ears
And this photo op made me freakin' crazy...TWO short-eared owls right next to each other. And I couldn't get the camera to focus that far away. I missed a really great opportunity because my camera is disabled. How often do you get the chance to photograph two short-eared owls at the same time? It's rare in Ohio, let me tell ya.
So, I think I will have to bite the birding bullet and send it away again. That makes me sad. It took 2 weeks the last time. And they broke it this time. I think they should just give me a new one. What do you think?

Other raptors today:
Merlin
Northern harriers (harassing the short-eared owls)
American kestrel
Red-shouldered hawk

Passerines:
A small flock of eastern meadowlarks....where the heck did THEY come from?

Not bad for an hour's worth of birding with a sleeping kid in the car.




5 comments:

KatDoc said...

I, too, had a 5 raptor day, Susan. The SEOWs at Armelder (I saw 2 of them), and the Northern Harriers (also two) an American Kestrel, and a Red-tailed Hawk, all at Armleder.

I had 2 Red-shouldered Hawks and 4 other Red-taileds. I tried for the CD Bald Eagle, but no luck.

It WAS a good day for birding, wasn't it?

Thanks for the phonoe call!

~Kathi

Mary said...

You both had a terrific birding day. Susan, I can only imagine your frustration with a camera that won't zoom. I'd be nuts since I don't have a back-up camera...

Make them pay for a new one.

dguzman said...

I definitely vote for NEW camera. Call them up and whine/bitch until they send you a new one.

RuthieJ said...

I've never seen a short-eared owl--how lucky for you (even though your camera isn't working correctly). Five different raptors in one day would definitely be a gift even on a non-birthday day.

Born Again Bird Watcher said...

Happy belated birthday. I will always remember it from now on as it falls on the same date as that of my wife.

By the way, the headline simile is superb. Your writing is bold and fearless - something I greatly respect.