stuff and things

08 August 2012

Tiny and Tinier Dancers ...

First off: Please excuse the awkward look of this post. I am not used to the "new and improved" (((choke))) Blogger, and also I'm trying to cut and paste from emails as quickly as possible. Thanks, as always, for your patience.

A family of Black-Necked Stilts, a bird closely related to the Avocet, have hatched a brood at our nearby Famosa Slough, very close to, (and fed by) the San Diego River:

Ray Spencer has given me permission to share his wonderful photos and narratives on my blog (I don't think he has a blog or I would have simply linked to it). If you are really sensitive (as I am), know that these little guys (the hatchlings) might not be around anymore. I searched for them this evening (8/8) and saw only the 5 or so adults. In any case, we have Ray's moving record in words and pictures.

There are many photos,but if you love birds, and these "tiny dancers" ... you must keep going ...

How many feet does this guy have, anyway? At least two babies under him.

The marsh grass, growing more and more endagered, and such an important habitat.

A message below from the "woman behind all that is wonderful about Famosa Slough, including being instrumental in saving it from shortsighted "development" way back in the 70's or so.

Bird Watching Friends -
Here are Ray Spencer's pictures from last Thursday (8/2).
Please note that the first ones are of a large rodent being downed by a Great Egret (NOT a baby BLNS).
- Barbara Peugh

From Paul, the photographer and narrator:

[I] stopped briefly last Wednesday and couldn't locate the 4 Black-necked Stilt chicks at Famosa Slough. On Thursday I found them, but their ranks had been reduced to 2. Of course there is a possibility that this is a different family, but I doubt it. Anyway, in addition to lots of cute shots, I observed one potentially tragic encounter .... which this e-mail will detail. The next one will have lots of cute shots. In any event there were 2 safe and sound chicks when I left about 9:30 on Thursday.There are multiple dangers the chicks face, including predation and by unsuspected sources. You'll see an adult drive off a Snowy Egret who arrived on the scene. Least you think that Egret eat only fish, recall this series where a large rodent was downed by a Great Egret:

We're sure the prey is a rodent; not a baby Black-Necked Stilt. It gives you an idea of how varied their diet can b

The adults can't keep the chicks totally under their control. The adults share responsibility, but usually only one is on the job at any time, and the other is off feeding itself. Though often they are sheltering them, the youngsters will explore and eat.

Safe for now.
Sorry for the funky type face errors, but the new Blogger is so different. Let's cross our fingers for the little bebbes!