Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Hi, I'm #136

This lovely little horned grebe is my 136th yard bird here at the cabin. It’s been a while since I’ve added a new one to my “yard” list. In the first place, I don’t have a yard, of course. I count any bird I can see from my cabin as being in my yard.

I found the little grebe last evening as I was returning from work. By the time I reached the far end of the pond, I could tell the little bird on it was a grebe, but it was only when I got close that I saw it wasn’t a pied-billed grebe, an uncommon visitor in and of itself. Although my camera travels with me everywhere, the entire camera bag doesn’t make every trip, and on this day that meant I didn’t have my long lens with me. Still, I stopped and snapped some photos, figuring that although the photos would be exceptionally bad, it would still be possible to identify the grebe as a horned grebe. So I took about 20 photos with my normal lens.

The little grebe was being cooperative, however, so I decided to chance driving up the hill to the cabin to get the long lens. Now once there, Dog HAD to go out, and instantly. So I took Dog and the long lens, waited for Dog to pee, then loaded him in the car, put the long lens on the camera and somehow after all of that, the horned grebe was still on the pond.

At first I took a few photos from the opposite side of the pond, but then I felt brave enough to drive up along the pond closer to the bird, where I stopped and took about 50 more photos, including these two.

The little bird was pretty cooperative, though didn’t do much other than keep an eye on me while I took photos from inside the car. After spending 15 minutes or so snapping away, I decided to leave the bird alone. When I got back up to the cabin, I could still see it sitting on the pond. It was gone this morning.

#136, you were a beauty!


Anonymous said...

hi carol...

Your lucky day1 Are you sure he's not a decoy?

just kidding, Marci

Scott said...

I've got a Pied-billed Grebe on my pond here in the Piedmont. I'm not sure if I've ever seen one here. Your Horned beats my Pied-billed, though! Congrats.

Carolyn H said...

Scott: I had p-b grebe here last summer, which I thought was pretty cool. I did have to wait almost 20 years for the horned grebe to show up. I figure the same pond that attracts the p-b grebe will (eventually) attract the horned grebe, too!

Carolyn H.