Monday, May 15, 2017

Bullock's Orioles on the Tuolumne River Parkway Trail

One of the pleasures of the coming summer season is the arrival of the tropical species in our region. Many of them are colorful, and as a beginning birder, I was surprised by how many could be seen in our region. I was on my river walk the other day, and I went an extra half mile to the trail that extends along the River Pointe development. There's a nice line of ancient oak trees along the river, but I've not seen a lot of native birds there (mainly lots of sparrows and house finches at the backyard feeders).
This time around, I spotted a yellowish bird in the oaks that I didn't immediately recognize. I immediately thought of female orioles, but wasn't sure. I got a couple of shots and started searching more carefully. I realized there were a number of birds flitting about high in the branches. Some of them were Cedar Waxwings, but then suddenly I saw a bright flash of yellow high over my head, and there it was: a male Bullock's Oriole (Icterus bullockii).
I did something unusual for my walks...I sat down! The birds weren't particularly upset by my presence, and there was a bench anyway, so I enjoyed watching the activity above.
I got a couple of half-decent shots and a short video. Enjoy!

I don't know, maybe he was irritated with me after all...

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