Thursday, January 15, 2009

Holiday Vacation Days

I was lucky enough to make 4 vacation days stretch into a week and a half off of work by attaching those days between Christmas & New Year's holidays and it was a welcome relief just to stay home and grub around the house and yard (that is, after celebrating each holiday and then putting away all the decorations for said holidays - ha!) But that was the beauty of such a stretched out vacation - sufficient time to do EVERYTHING with leisure time to spare. Yay!

And one of the things I had the leisure time to do was, on the spur of the moment, turn into the parking lot of the wetlands walking park that I am always saying I want to explore but just never have the time to do! And it turned out to be a delight!
While sitting out on one of the observation pavillions that stretch out into the wetlands, I saw a white crane-like bird poking around the shoreline and then . . . wow! What's that?! A black crane sitting in a tree!!! A black crane?!! Now this is something new! So I studied the bird as he sat there stretching out his long snake-like neck and spreading his wings. And I got lucky enough to see him fly across to another tree and lo and behold, there were patches of white on the back of his wings!!! Now I knew I had enough information to go back home and look through my field guide and see who this guy was! Of course, a few hours later, I did just that and now I know that I had a first sighting of an Anhinga!!! What a cool bird!

Here is a photo of a female Anhinga. I didn't take this pic, but got it off the Bird Feeder Friends blogsite. Shelly took this photo. and I returned on New Year’s Day, with guide and camera in hand, hoping to catch sight of that black male Anhinga. We had a lot of fun exploring the park and of course, David had to do a little extreme park walking. Alas, we did not see Mr. Anhinga but we did see this crane.Well, now that I know Restoration Park is such a great place to safely view all kinds of water birds, not to mention other woodlands birds, I will continue as many times as I can find the opportunity to go out there and take photos. Hopefully one day I will have my own photo of Mr. Anhinga to post here on this blog.

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