Monday, August 10, 2009

A Weekend Outside

It was a hot weekend, but the Master Naturalists had two events--fortunately in the morning. We went out in search of horned lizards in Saturday morning out near Dean. We were skunked on horned lizards, but were able to document a box turtle and took some pictures of a walking stick bug. On Sunday, I had a mussel watch at Lake Wichita and Lake Arrowhead. I did find some mussels at Arrowhead, to include a live yellow sandshell, but it wasn't the best day I've had for mussels.

But as in all outdoor events, there was an opportunity to do a little bit of birding. On Saturday, I thought my best birds were lark sparrows. They have a pretty song and although they are fairly common in the county, I don't see them in town.

On Sunday I saw a lot of birds. There was a belted kingfisher fishing at the Lake Wichita spillway. There was also a small flock of snowy egrets. One of the birds was still in breeding plumage and he was giving all of the others a tough time--chasing them around, jumping on them and squawking. He is a little confused--it's time to start getting ready to leave. Breeding season is over. I was waiting for the others to gang up on him, but they were just trying to stay away from him. My other highlight was a singing Bewick's wren in the bottom of a bush. He was just pouring his heart out. I watched him for several minutes.

Good birding!

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