Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Indigo Bunting

Now that I'm done with the Tawas Point Birding Festival I can get back to real-time blogging. Lisa, Lori and I paid a visit last week to the Brighton Rec Area to pull garlic mustard. The DNR's Stewardship program has workdays on the weekends where a group will get together, lead by the program's coordinator Laurel Malvitz, and do all sorts of habitat restoration. But thanks to our schedule (arts shows and markets on the weekends) we are rarely able to make it to these. So we try to get out and do some work mid-week.

We were working an area around a prairie that the state has been working hard to restore. Here we are working our way up the slope of a ravine.

Lisa with a handful of garlic mustard.

Where the trail cuts through the prairie we paused and listened and watched. I was curious to see who was hanging around this open space. To my delight we found not one but three male Indigo Buntings, rotating from tree to shrub to snag, singing and singing.

I decided to return the following morning, and I set my stool under a big maple tree across the trail from a snag that seemed to be a favorite perching point so I could get some pics of this gorgeous bird. We see them at our place only once a year, I guess as they're passing through, so I was thrilled with the opportunity to get to spend more time with them.

They did not disappoint!

This Goldfinch wanted in on the action too!

I sat for about 45 minutes, watching and listening, surprisingly unbothered by mosquitoes. What a treat!

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