August already! 8-1-23

August 01, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

August has arrived!

According to my calculations, we have now given up 43 minutes of daylight since the summer solstice.

Summer has peaked!

 

7-20-23 Rough-leaf Dogwood berries, white are ripe7-20-23 Rough-leaf Dogwood berries, white are ripe

The Rough-leaf Dogwoods (Cornus drummondii) were covered in white flowers in May, attracting small pollinators. Now, the berries are ripening  and birds have really been after them. Thrushes, woodpeckers, catbirds and flycatchers all come in for the bounty.

 

7-20-23 Eastern Bluebird juvenile in Rough-leaf Dogwood7-20-23 Eastern Bluebird juvenile in Rough-leaf Dogwood 7-20-23 American Robin  in Rough-leaf Dogwood7-20-23 American Robin in Rough-leaf Dogwood 7-24-23 E. Phoebe immature7-24-23 E. Phoebe immature

Younger birds, like the speckled Eastern Bluebird, have to figure out the best approach, as the ripest berries are out on the furthest tips of the branches. Sometimes they can reach from a branch above. Often, they swoop down and pick them off on the fly. The robins and flycatchers, like the Eastern Phoebe will usually grab and go. We didn't plant these small trees, they were waiting in the seed bank to grow up after we removed all the bush honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii) many years ago. They are an important plant in our woodland, supporting 94 species of Lepidoptera, or moth and butterfly caterpillars, vital food for birds. 

 

7-26-23 E. Phoebe immature7-26-23 E. Phoebe immature

On these hot days, the birds have been taking time to refresh themselves at the Bubbler.

 

6-22-20 Eastern Phoebe juvenile6-22-20 Eastern Phoebe juvenile

One way to tell an immature bird is to look for the gape hinge at the base of the bill, which is usually a lighter color.

 

7-27-23 Tufted Titmouse7-27-23 Tufted Titmouse

This Tufted Titmouse appears to have the pinkish gape, and it pants as it bathes to cool its body.

  7-27-23 Mourning Dove, Eastern Bluebird, American Robin7-27-23 Mourning Dove, Eastern Bluebird, American Robin 7-27-23 Eastern Bluebird7-27-23 Eastern Bluebird

There is usually a mix of birds coming in around noontime. A Mourning Dove, Eastern Bluebird and American Robin find their space. At least for a while. This young bluebird scrambled out of the way until the larger birds finished. Ah, relief!

 

7-27-23 Great Crested Flycatcher immature7-27-23 Great Crested Flycatcher immature 7-27-23 Great Crested Flycatcher immature7-27-23 Great Crested Flycatcher immature

7-27-23 Great Crested Flycatcher immature7-27-23 Great Crested Flycatcher immature

We've had many young birds around and this immature Great Crested Flycatcher was confirmation of another successful nesting this year.

 

This is a photo from a few summers ago of an adult Great Crested Flycatcher. They've been nesting here for nearly a decade.

 

7-27-23 Carolina Chickadee7-27-23 Carolina Chickadee 7-27-23 Tufted Titmouse7-27-23 Tufted Titmouse

Birds are constantly looking for food, and often in this small oak hybrid, they look for insects. This tree was keyed out to be a natural hybrid of a black and chinquapin (or chinkapin) oak.

 

7-29-23 Mourning Dove7-29-23 Mourning Dove 7-29-23 Mourning Doves7-29-23 Mourning Doves

This trio of Mourning Doves have been seen together lately. I suspect they are all young birds. The pair on the right hang out together and the larger bird on the left wants to be with them, or perhaps is trying out 'moves' for the next breeding season.

 

7-30-23 Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)7-30-23 Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)

7-6-20 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Salvia 'Black and Blue'7-6-20 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Salvia 'Black and Blue'

Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are taking nectar at the few remaining blossoms of the Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) and the 'Black and Blue' Salvia. 

 

7-20-19 Cardinalflower (Lobelia cardinalis)7-20-19 Cardinalflower (Lobelia cardinalis)
 

Cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis) is just beginning to open a few blooms, but will be in full swing in another week or so. 

 

7-31-23 Ruby-throated Hummingbird7-31-23 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 7-31-23 Ruby-throated Hummingbird7-31-23 Ruby-throated Hummingbird

The dominant male or 'Flash', is protecting one feeder as best as it can. That's right! I noticed a real uptick in hummingbird numbers on Saturday, 7-29-23. They are right on time! Birds are on the move, and now you know to be ready with freshly filled feeders! It helps to fuel their insect catching ability so they can be ready to cross the Gulf of Mexico.

 

Check out the Migration Tools at:  BirdCast  

Click on the map for Upper Midwest and Northeast to check species arrival and departure dates. Fascinating! 

"After a wild spring of some intense flights, what will this new season hold for migration? Will the top 10 states for spring, in terms of total birds overflying the state in a season, see the same ranking and name: 1) Missouri, 2) Oklahoma, 3) Kansas, 4) Nebraska, 5) North Dakota, 6) Wisconsin, 7) Minnesota, 8) Texas, 9) South Dakota, and 10) Florida?"


 

 

7-30-23 Water lilies (Nymphaea odorata)7-30-23 Water lilies (Nymphaea odorata)

Enjoy our water lilies and think cool! 

 

 

 

 


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