Thursday, April 29, 2010

Lair of the Bear

Visited Lair of the Bear up in Bear Creek Canyon yesterday. Was hoping there would be some Warblers or Lazuli's, but I guess it's still too early. Got some Waxwings fly catching over the creek last spring, too. It was pretty windy and not terribly birdy, but I did get to shoot some pics of a few things.

For the past couple years there's been a pair of Mountain Bluebirds that take up in a medium sized dead Cottonwood not far up the western bluff trail. Just after you cross over a little freshet. Don't think they have eggs yet, as both were sitting out on the tree and going off for ten minute bug hunts. I did see both go in their hole a couple of times, but didn't stay long.

Just as I was striking my tripod a bright Purple, Cassin's, House Finch (not sure which) lit in a nearby Cedar. Too bad it's back lit.

The creek was running pretty high and the first eastern crossing near the Beaver dam was partly flooded. Didn't feel like risking hoping rocks with my camera gear, so hiked back to the western bridge. Along the bluff it was pretty wet and there were a lot of butterlies on this one tree. Quite odd. A lot of Mourning Cloaks and some of these fringy orange yellow butterflies. I think they are Green Commas. Always seem to be a lot of butterflies over there along the bluff with it's weeping seeps and ferns.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

What a Tree!

Recently heard about this "Crane Tree" up near the Jeffco airport. I told the person reporting this to me that Cranes don't breed around here. She said they were just big birds that colonize this tree every spring, so I headed up to check it out. Right off 108th where it turns into the Jeffco airport commercial area is a large Cottonwood next to this medium sized pond on a golf course. There's a nice Great Blue Heron rookery of three or four nests. Also, a Great Horned family shares the same tree. A nice owlet sat on the nest, quickly molting into it's adult plumage. Didn't see it's folks. Cars were zipping by on the busy streets and a lawn crew was making a lot of noise mowing the grass. Didn't seem to bother either the Herons or the owl. It's amazing where some birds decide to make a home.