A trip between rain showers

Swainson Thrush2 PMSP 04192020.JPG
Swainson’s Thrush

There were few birds found recently on Pinnacle Mountain State Park’s Arboretum Trail (and only 1 other person – we stayed far away from each other), but the ones I definitely made the trip taken between rain showers count. I found a Carolina Wren feeding its babies, a Carolina Chickadee (not pictured) gathering food and a Swanson’s Thrush. A native Red Columbine flower also grew near the trail – a perfect celebration of this being Native Plant Week.

Carolina Wren PMSP 04192020.JPG
Carolina Wren
Red Columbine2 PMSP 04192020.JPG
Red Columbine

Front-row seat

Eastern Bluebird2 BKNWR 04182020.JPG

Two Eastern Bluebirds have been feeding their young right outside of my front window for the past few days. Tonight, they sat in a feeder filled with mealworms and fed the youngster.

Eastern Bluebird1 BKNWR 04182020.JPG

Photos: Gotta get out!

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher2 Bufflehead Bay 04112020.JPG
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

On Saturday, we were going a little stir crazy at home so we decided to take advantage of the warm weather to grab some drinks at a nearby Starbucks and then visit local parks (while practicing social distancing of course and other guidelines advised by health officials).

The trip got off to a great start! Starbucks’ drive-thru line was long but there was a native Possum Haw tree/shrub that had about 15 Cedar Waxwings eating the berries on it.

Cedar Waxwing Little Rock 04112020
Cedar Waxwing

We eventually visited Bufflehead Bay, the flower garden near Pinnacle Mountain State Park’s Visitor Center and Two Rivers Park. The clear winners of the day were the many butterflies we saw as well as a Northern Diamondback Watersnake that was sunbathing. Here’s a little of what we saw:

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Pinnacle Mountain 04112020
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
Northern Diamond-backed Watersnake Two Rivers Park 04112020
Northern Diamondback Watersnake
Red-spotted Purple Admiral Butterfly Bufflehead Bay 04112020
Red-spotted Purple Admiral
Red Admiral butterfly Pinnacle Mountain 04112020
Painted Lady
Silver-spotted Skipper1 Pinnacle Mountain 04112020
Silver-spotted Skipper
Silver-spotted Skipper2 Pinnacle Mountain 04112020
Silver-spotted Skipper
Purple Martin3 Two Rivers Park 04112020
Purple Martins

Flower1 Bufflehead Bay 04112020

Scissortail Flycatcher Two Rivers Park 04112020
Scissortail Flycatcher

Currently loving: Common Yellowthroat

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Common Yellowthroat

I stumbled across a Common Yellowthroat during a recent trip to Bald Knob National Wildlife Refuge. Not going to lie, it took me a good 20-ish minutes to finally spot/identify this little guy. I could see two birds sprinting around in the shrubs across a huge ditch from me, but they were moving too fast for me to see clearly at first. I finally caught the one pictured above just resting in a bush.

This morning trip fielded about 28 different species of birds for me. Some of my highlights are below:

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Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Yellow-rumped Warbler3 BKNWR 040420
Yellow-Rumped Warbler
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher5 BKNWR 040220
Blue-gray Gnatcatchers and a Red-bellied Woodpecker
Double-Crested Cormorant BKNWR 040420
Double-crested Cormorant
Eastern Bluebird BKNWR 040420
Eastern Bluebird

Walk it off

Pine Warbler3 032120 Bufflehead Bay
Pine Warbler

Recently, we took a walk at Bufflehead Bay near the Jolly Roger’s Marina to get out, enjoy the good weather and see what birds we could find. There were TONS of common loons as well as other little birds like the above Pine Warbler.

Just a note: We did practice social distancing. 🙂

Season of Blue-gray Gnatcatchers

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher on nest Bufflehead Bay 04052020
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

During yesterday’s walk at Bufflehead Bay just west of Little Rock, I discovered a Blue-gray Gnatcatcher on a nest. I’m pretty excited since the nest overlooks the main trail. I seem to be spotting a lot of Blue-gray Gnatcatchers this season. Thank goodness they are so darn cute. Another cool sighting: an Easter Tiger Swallowtail butterfly.

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher on nest2 Bufflehead Bay 04052020
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher4 Bufflehead Bay 04052020
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Bufflehead Bay 04052020
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail