Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Red eyes, Golden eyes

There hasn't been much in the way of nice sunny days this winter, but the warmer than usual temps have made it hard not to go out and take some pics of birds.

On a sunny day after work recently, I decided to take a little drive on lightly traveled roads to see what I could find.

I happened upon a nice looking bird with awesome looking red eyes. Nope, too early for a Red-eyed Vireo. This adult Cooper's Hawk was sitting in a tree just off the road. I watched it for a while, taking pics out the car window, using the car as a blind.

Cooper's Hawk


The bird kept repositioning, changing its demeanor constantly.

Cooper's Hawk

Closer look at those red eyes.

Cooper's Hawk

Cooper's Hawk


Yesterday after work, I went down to East Fork State Park to check out the Common Goldeneyes that have been hanging out there. I went to a somewhat secluded little cove to watch them. I love to watch ducks perform their courtship rituals in the early spring.

The sun was replaced by cloud cover when I arrived at the lake. I was able to quickly spot a male Common Goldeneye by himself.

Common Goldeneye

Soon after, I was able to spot a female Common Goldeneye. The male swam towards her. He then performed his courtship display. Like most ducks, the males bend their heads back while calling. I describe the call as sounding similar to a loud zipper. The female appeared not interested as usual. The female is the duck on the other side of the rocks.

Common Goldeneye

The male goldeneye then swam up to a pair of Horned Grebes and displayed to them. They paid no attention whatsoever.

An approaching fishing boat spooked the goldeneyes, causing them to fly. I was able to catch the male flying away.

Common Goldeneye


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12 comments:

  1. The photos of the coop are awesome! I enjoy watching ducks exhibit their courtship behavior as well.

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  2. Nice looking eyes!

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  3. Great shots, Donald! I love raptors.

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  4. That Cooper's Hawk is a beauty Donald.
    I love watching the Goldeneye perform his courtship. He puts so much effort into it.

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  5. Great photos of the Cooper's Hawk! It is such an amazing bird to see!!

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  6. Cool shots of the Hawk! Grreat series of photos.

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  7. Fantastic captures Donald, love those eyes

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  8. Cool series of photos. It sounds like that Goldeneye needs to work on his pick-up lines; I hope he finds success.

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  9. Hi Donald,
    Nice pictures, especially of the Hawk! I have a bit of a soft spot for birds of prey!
    J
    Follow me at HEDGELAND TALES

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  10. I love watching ducks too Donald but your Cooper's Hawk shots are fabulous!

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  11. Nice collection you have shared here which is really eye catching.

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  12. A wonderful bird to see..

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