Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Bobolink - male
(click on images to enlarge)

I've been persuing field material...gathering if-you-will.  Two birds have been playing tag with me this summer; I'd like to do some small studies of them...then perhaps a larger piece of work...painting or drawing.  They've both been here in the pastures this summer - should make it easier huh!  Not.  For some reason these guys move onto the neighboring crop ground where I can't get close to them...private ground too.  So I've been looking on public prairie areas that are larger in size, so they don't feel so squeezed when I'm nearby.  I find birds will eventually get used to your presence if they have some space.

Bobolink - female

The two birds are the Bobolinks and the Dickcissels.  Both are grassland obligates, or birds that require grassland habitat to survive and nest.  Interestingly the Bobolinks are one of the first grassland birds to complete nesting and leave.  They are in the process of doing so right now!  

I was photographing on a large prairie area last week and noticed the males were bunching up...one of the first signs that the second phase of their summer was about to begin.  Then I noticed immature birds...young that had fledged (left the nest).  Yup, there they go!

Don't misunderstand, these birds will still be around for a few weeks but not in a predictable manner.  They seem to move from one area to the next for the rest of the summer (kind of nomadic) , and they seldom call and display as they have the past several weeks.  I miss them already!

Dickcissel - male

The Dickcissels are still calling here...saying their name and declaring territory or just enjoying themselves!  Dickcissel males are the real singers, the females have an insect like buzz when they're disturbed around the nest or young.

Dickcissel - female

Have some image files to go through but hopefully will find some possibilities I can entertain.  Gathering images and material is fun, now comes the hard part!

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