Tony also saw plenty of birds he could identify: bald eagles, Canada geese, common terns, eastern kingbirds, mallards, ring-billed gulls, robins, common mergansers, double-crested cormorants, American black ducks, great blue heron, Nashville warbler, killdeer, red-winged blackbirds, common grackles, black-capped chickadees, song sparrows and starlings.
He shared some wonderful photos of kingbirds and a heron; I’ll save those for a later day.
Meanwhile, I was far away, visiting friends who are missionaries in the interior of Papua Indonesia. There are something like 700 species of birds in Papua, but I didn’t see many of them. Thanks to my host pointing them out, I saw — and heard — one flock of hornbills. Each day, about 5:30 p.m., a flock of parrots would fly noisily overhead. I’m pretty sure I saw a few of them one time. One day, I watched a beautiful brown-and-white raptor of some sort soaring over the hills. I haven’t yet figured out what it was. The ubiquitous bird in the area we were in, which was about 2,300 feet above sea level in the tropical rainforest, was some sort of swift. They were artful fliers and great fun to watch. If I stood still, they’d almost fly into me before making an abrupt turn. But they moved much too quickly for me to get a picture.
I took a few pictures of butterflies instead, and I might share them one of these days.
I also had my first taste of python and got a close-up view of a tarantula.
Your bird stories and pictures from far and near welcome at: firstname.lastname@example.org.