I ventured out to the pastures in Lamar a little later than usual this morning since there was a pretty heavy cloud cover and not much light to work with. There were three whoopers in the lower portion of the pasture when I arrived and soon after three more flew in and joined them, unfortunately, they were just a little to far off for any great shots, and somewhat to my surprise, there was no interaction between the two groups even though they were in very close proximity to one another, no territorial disputes.
As always, click on any image for a larger, sharper version.
Up before dawn again hoping for a colorful sunrise, but it just wasn’t to be, so I drove down to the point on 12th Street and parked there to await daylight.
Just as the sun was breaking the horizon, a Great Blue Heron flew in and set up camp on a post just 40 feet from me as I was getting ready, setting up my tripod and camera.
Normally, I just can’t get excited about this bird, as I have a million shots of them already, but there was something about the lighting from an orange sun still just kissing the horizon, and I got off more than a few shots as I waited for the cranes to fly in.
While shooting the heron, out of the corner of my eye I saw some movement in the grass quite near my setup. In the dim light, I couldn’t make out what it was, but I knew it was a bird I had never encountered before.
Turns out, it was an American golden plover, one of the world’s most ambitious flyers. This small bird nests in the Arctic, then jaunts down to southern South America to spend the winter! His stop here in Texas is just a refueling stop , usually for just a few days, before heading much farther north.
As the light grew stronger, I noticed another stranger, though certainly not as unusual as the plover, over in the cow pasture, quite near the road, a long-billed curlew.
I really didn’t have any luck with the whooping cranes today, but I did finally finish up processing yesterday’s bonanza of whooper shots, one of the best days I have ever had with these birds.
Late afternoon I took a trip into Camper’s Clinic in Rockport to make an appointment for an oil change for the motorhome and see if they know anything about the windshield wiper problem on the Workhorse.