Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sleepy Loon (and some Loon videos!)

"I'm getting very sleepy....."




Zzzzzz!!



I wanted to share a few Loon videos with you. This first one shows a nesting Loon, if you watch closely, you'll see the loon chick come out from underneath its mother's wing.




And here's a "Loon Concert" for your listening enjoyment.


And now my Loon week has truly ended! I need to start paying attention to my other birds as well. Bob the Mourning Dove is getting cranky! (P.S. His baby is doing well! I'll try to get photos this week.)

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Nothing to do with birdwatching....

But here's my future bird watcher - my Bernese Mountain Dog puppy!



She is 4 weeks old and will be ready to come home at the end of June. I'm hoping I can take her in the kayak with me to look for Loons....

P.S. If you'd like to see what a Bernese Mountain Dog looks like once they are all "grown up" - CLICK HERE.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Loon Togetherness (and a Loon Poem!)

Loon week is almost coming to an end (sadly - but you know I'm going to post 10,000 more Loon photos before the summer is over - ha!)

I wanted to share a Loon poem with you that my good friend Michele wrote for me. She is such a talented poet, please visit her HERE and read this special poem first. This will set the "Loon mood."

One thing that always touches my heart about the Loons is the tender relationship that the male and female Loon have with each other. They are always together, always looking out for each other.


I love how they constantly swim so close to one another....






When one of them is fishing, the other one keeps an eye out for danger.





And they enjoy relaxing together, thinking about all the fish they are going to catch and how they are going to protect their Loon chicks once they are hatched. It's true Loon love!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Male Model Loon

The male and female Loon have the same feather colors but you can tell them apart by the following:

  • The male's body is larger than the female
  • The males beak is longer
  • If you see/hear the Loon yodeling, then it's the male since they are the only ones who do that particular call. It's their territorial call.

Please take a look at my male model...









Isn't he just gorgeous with that sunlight dancing off that long beak?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Loon's Morning Stretch








It's Loon week on my blog! (I promise not to post all 185 photos! Ha!) I'm hoping I will be able to show you through my photos why I have such passion for these birds.

If you would like to hear some of the Loon's different calls - click HERE. Once you are on this page, you have several different loon calls to choose from. My favorite is the 'Wail'- I typically hear it in the early evening on our lake. Which call is your favorite?

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Look what I found this morning...



After kayaking my arms to exhaustion all over a 230 acre lake and trying to follow the loons' call to see where they were located, I finally found my beloved loon pair pictured above. Now who's going to tow me back to shore? :-)

*I headed to the local coffee shop and took advantage of their WIFI. I just couldn't wait until Tuesday to post this. I took over 185 photos and I will probably take more. I may have to make this Shelley's Loon Week!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Have a Nice Memorial Weekend!




I hope everyone has a safe and nice Memorial Weekend! Remember those servicemen who sacrificed for us and those who continue to do so!

My internet access at the cabin will be sporadic - I will check in with you on Tuesday!

Friday, May 22, 2009

More "Cherry Picked" Photos

I call these my "cherry picked" photos, because I photographed these birds at a festival where they were being exhibited by a Wildlife Rehabilitation Organization. How I would love to see these in the wild and be able to capture photographs of them in their natural settings!


Here's a Kestrel that was hit by a car and ended up being blinded in one eye. He will not be able to be released back into the wild but is now part of the education program. This was a treat for my husband to see as this is his favorite bird.





Here is a Rough-legged hawk. I believe this one had an injured foot/claw so he would not be able to grasp his prey in the wild. He was very vocal and loved showing us how beautiful his wings looked spread out.

I Apologize

I apologize.

As some of you are aware, I recently did a post on saving a baby mourning dove. It upset some people when I wrote about protecting the remaining baby from a Blue Jay with a bb gun. Please note the following:Italic

  • I will not be harming or shooting the Blue Jay or any bird, nor am I an advocate for doing so. I am well aware of the laws.
  • The post has been removed.
  • This post was written in the heat of the moment. It was a thought written - not an action. I should have been more clear and given more thought before posting this. This blog is me, I find humor in my birds and I love birds. A blog is a personal journal of thoughts and feelings. However, it is not my intention to upset or offend anyone.
  • It goes without saying that I love birds and am a big advocate for them. It is why I write this blog. It is why I am a member of the Michigan Audubon and Michigan Loon Preservation. My money, my time and photos have been dedicated towards the preservation of birds and their habitat and will remain so.

Sincerely,

Shelley

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Early Bird...

The early bird.....




...gets the worm! It's true!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Saving Baby Mourning Dove



I already know - I shouldn't interfere with nature. And I'm not going to listen to the circle of nature opinion. In this instance I am being ruled with my heart. I came home this afternoon from the cabin to find a Blue Jay pecking my newly hatched baby mourning dove to death. It was too late to save that baby so we started looking for the other one. Meanwhile poor mama Mourning Dove is trying to protect her dead baby carcass from the Blue Jay so of course this has me in tears. My hubby removes the carcass and the Blue Jay is still looking for it and the Mama Dove is still protecting the now empty space.

We thankfully found the other baby - too young to be off his nest. Either the Blue Jays or the wind knocked him down. Greg got a ladder and we put the baby back in his nest. Now I am praying that Mama Dove comes back and finds her baby there and is able to protect him. (I have the baby pictured above.) Please wish me luck and send good thoughts my way. ( My friend Bird Girl - recently shared her story about losing her bluebird babies. - I shed tears that day reading her story. Now today I know how all too well how she felt. )

P.S. These are "Bob the Mourning Dove's" babies that I've been waiting for to hatch.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Expectant Father





Nesting mother....


Pretty soon I'll have 2 of Bob's mourning dove babies running around. I'll need to load up on some extra bird baths (or toilets for that matter.) They'll need names.....sounds like I'll be having a giveaway in the next couple weeks!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Hannibal's Challenge - Personal Best

Hannibal at Hannibal's Animals recently challenged us to post our personal best bird photos. She always has wonderful photos but recently named these PHOTOS her personal best.

Now for mine. It was hard for me to choose - I still feel I haven't gotten my personal best but am hoping to with the Loons this year. But here are two (since I could decide!)


I had to resize this eagle photo for this blog post so it's a little off but here it is! This was exciting for me because it was the first time I had seen a Bald Eagle. A local fellow collected roadkill deer carcasses to throw in the field for the Eagles to help them with a meal in the winter. My photo was published in the local paper (I was thrilled!)




And this Loon photo many of you already have seen before. I love it for the reason you usually see Loons in the water and it's hard to catch them flying around. This guy was flying around the lake giving his territorial call to let the loons know that this was HIS lake.


So, what's your personal best?!!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

End of the line buddy...

CRAP! No where to go!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Welcome to the Loons' Nest

I think I told you I named my log cabin the Loons' Nest, right? Some of you already know I'm loony for those loons so did you doubt I would name my cabin anything different?! This past weekend was too cold to go kayaking so I had to settle for hearing them in the distance. There's always next weekend.....sigh.....
But let me share my weekend with you....

Here's my Loons' Nest sign. I had to have my hubby take photos of me in front of it cuz they are going to feature it in Log Home Living Magazine. I tried to make Greg get in the photo - but no luck!



Look inside this tulip....do you see what I see....?




Some of you noted how weak the Robin's nest looked last time I posted it. Well I'm glad to report that mama Robin tightened up the place and it's looking much better!




Here's my chickadee mooning me! By the way the funniest thing happened. My husband and I were standing on the deck talking, and this little chickadee landed on the log post within inches of me and was making a chortling sound and tilting his head at me. It was like he was speaking to me and was very happy. I said hello back and then after a few minutes he went to the feeder. My husband and I now count this as one of my best birding moments ever. Gosh I love these little guys!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Games I like to play



I'm headed to the cabin this morning and will be back on Monday. I am excited to check out the Loon's nesting raft to see if they have settled in.

On another note, Bob the Mourning Dove should be a father any day now! His wife is still nesting in our roof gutter and coos at me everytime I walk by.

Happy Mother's Day to all you moms out there and I will catch up with you on Monday!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Meet my new neighbor



Sure, she's not a Loon or Wood Duck or a Chickadee, but I will still take her as a neighbor!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Bufflehead Excitement

Went kayaking in search of a loon....




Found a Bufflehead duck and was very excited!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Juvenile Common Loon



This photo was taken last summer while I was fishing with my husband. This juvenile Loon popped up next to us in the boat and then it occured to me he was chasing the fish that was chasing our bait. I'm headed to the cabin and hoping that the Loons will begin nesting soon. There is an artifical Loon raft that was made by one of the Loon Rangers to help a Loon pair along. I believe they have been successful the last 9 summers. Here's to another successful summer!