Monday, November 9, 2009

Scenes From the Prairie

Wild horses on Bolen Bluff trail, Paynes Prairie State Reserve

Fall migration is over. The warblers I enjoyed only a few weeks ago are now (I hope) safely ensconced in their winter digs in the tropics. And our winter visitors have only begun to settle in: A flock of Chipping Sparrows has already planted itself underneath my feeder, and the Eastern Phoebes ( not nearly as clean and natty-looking as my western Black Phoebes) have been singing loudly just about everywhere. This guy was on the prairie at Bolen Bluff:

Paynes Prairie is always a good place to visit when you want to go out, but know there won't be that many birds. There is always some interesting non-avian distraction. For the past month or two at Bolen Bluff, I've passed by this beautiful wasps' nest: I love how symmetrical it is. It looks like something that could be sold at Crate and Barrel as a yuppie decorative item. But I understand that the wasps who built it can deliver a nasty sting:

There's something perverse about the fact that temperatures in the mid-70s feel a bit chilly here. And when we turned back the clocks last week, it did feel unexpectedly autumnal. A strange reflex of this change of seasons was the eruption of yellow blooms at La Chua last weekend:

There have been rumors of Grasshopper and White-crowned Sparrows—and even an errant Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher—at La Chua over the past few weeks, but I haven't found any of these, yet. Right now, I'm just enjoying the autumnal weather (such as it is out here), and waiting for the chirps and calls of winter visitors.


Sparverius said...

I love to just go out and enjoy whatever there is to see and experience. And this is a great time to do it. Glad you are out enjoying the weather.

Felicia said...

Thanks! And you are so lucky that you get to go out and explore the outdoors for a living! I hope fall is great where you are!

Ali Iyoob said...

Glad you are seeing cool birds. Try pishing in brush and you might pull up something interesting.