Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night. (Rainer Maria Rilke)

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Fall Migration is in Full Swing!

I want to wish everyone a very Happy Autumnal Equinox here in the northern hemisphere!  And a very Happy Vernal Equinox to my friends in the southern hemisphere!  I'm, as usual, a little late in getting my post out, but I think the Equinox extends into the next day or so...something like that.  

Above is some lovely red leaves from a vine I found out in the preserve.  It's about the only obvious fall color I've found.  We do get quite a bit of subtle changes down here in the swamp and I try to document with photos as that goes along.

I'm so darn excited to have a new bird visitor to the yard.  This is an Ovenbird.  Some are here for the winter or he may move on to the Caribbean.  I haven't done all my research on him yet, but I got a positive ID from some Florida birding friends on Facebook.  Otherwise, these confusing warbler types really strain my brain trying to figure out which one they are.  The pink legs really help with this identification.

Now, I think this is a Yellow Rumped Warbler also known as good ole Butter Butt.  

And I think this is a Palm Warbler.  BUT - as I find the Warbler family to be so similar, I am never positive with my ID.  I should really join up with a birding group down here and get a bit more practice!

I am however, quite sure this is a Yellow Throated Warbler.

And this is a Black and White Warbler.  (not exactly a tough one to ID on those last two, haha)

This isn't a very good shot, but I did get what I believe is a Blue Headed Vireo come through the yard.

Another noisy shot, but what a cute Eastern Phoebe to arrive.

This guy showed up last year and I still don't know what kind of sparrow he is.  I didn't get a lot of pics of him so I'm tentatively ID'ing him as a Field Sparrow until somebody can tell me.  And I might not have enough photos to show all the aspects that is needed to get an identification.  Oh, well - I try!

And as always, the Holy Grail is when the Painted Buntings and Indigo Buntings arrive!  I love all the birds that visit, but I can't help getting a little excited when these beauties show up.

So I went ahead and put out the very heavy birdbath before the end of the hurricane season, which I usually don't do because it could become a flying missile.  We live less than five miles from the coast, so we would get a big hit if one came in.  But because the Painted Bunting arrived so early this year, I put it back out as they love it so much.  

If Florida gets a hurricane - yes, it will be my fault... aaargh!

All kidding aside, I love watching the buntings frolic in the birdbath.  

I had a few weeks lately where I went walkabout from the computer.  Needed a social media break I guess.  Hopefully, there will be more new birds going through the yard during migration in the next few weeks - always fun to watch for!  I'll keep you updated.

Friday, September 4, 2015

The Painted Buntings are Back!!!

I'm so surprised to see the Painted Buntings already arriving here in southern Florida.  Last year they didn't show up in my yard until the end of September.  This guy is looking a little scrubby - maybe he had a rough flight, poor guy.  I'm happy he's found food and water in our yard.

Here's a shot from February of this year - you can see how gorgeous and sleek and healthy this guy is looking.  I hope the above bunting will be okay.  I'm waiting for his friends to join him, they're so much fun to observe, especially frolicking in the birdbath.

I'll tell you, I've been pretty much MIA in the garden for all of August and it definitely shows.  I'll have to get out the big guns to tackle the jungle this month - that would be the machete, saw and ladder.  So, I think for this post, I'll just show the pretty parts, like this beautiful blue Plumbago! :)

The Purslane is thriving thanks to the deer that have decided to give it a break...they're devouring my Passionflower instead.  But that's nothing new.

I kept cropping and recropping this Crown-of-Thorns photo, but just couldn't get it looking satisfactory - so I gave up.  Here it is, looking bright and cheery at least. 

I think the stems are cool.

I've got a rogue Lantana bloom out front.  I left it.  I welcome all strangers to my garden, especially those that attract pretty butterflies!

The orange/red Lantana out back attracted this pretty Julia butterfly.  I love his polka dot eyes.

The Myrtles have been blooming for awhile now in the neighborhood.  There's this gorgeous deep pink, there's purple ones and white as well.  I'm happy to report there have been no Crape Myrtle murders in our area! :)

Speaking of the neighbors, directly across from us, we are provided with this pretty Mexican Petunia sight every day.

I can't get enough of anything purple.

Although I like to mess around with the edit features and see what happens.  Here the infrared edit shows such wonderful detail and it almost looks like crepe paper.

I really like to use the infrared on orchids.  Yes, I know it's not REAL infrared photography, but I still like how the edit feature looks.

Here's another one from one of my Vandas.  I have a bunch more, but I'll stop as I realize it's probably an acquired taste, lol! 

I want to gush and veraciously thank one of my garden blogging friends (e) for sending me this adorable Firebush marker for my garden!  I'm waiting until October (after Hurricane season) to put it out as it would be sure to be washed away by our daily heavy downpours.  I can't wait to get it set out!

I have, however, put out my Autumnal Door Blessing a little early this year.  I was just feeling like it.  I do find it a little hard to incorporate subtropical things like palm fronds (and palm doorknockers) to reflect a fall feel.  I guess I'll have to get crafty and work on that! Happy September everybody!