Saturday, April 11, 2009

A busy morning in the Garden

I showed up at 8 am Saturday in the Caboose parking lot for a OLLI birding class, led by Heyward Douglass.

There was also a small triathlon going on (the run looped around the Garden's back roads), a photography class (from Pickens County Museum), and an unidentified hiking group, who looked like they were ready for a much more challenging hike than the Garden presents.

A beautiful spring morning had a lovely show of birds.

A highlight was a pair of blue gnatcatchers (an early spring migrant) whose call tests hearing in higher decibel ranges.

A sharp-shinned hawk (about the size of a robin) raced by.

Among the Carolina Wrens and Tufted Titmice calling back and forth, we (at least Heyward did) heard a Yellow-rumped Warbler and other warblers.

An American Robin sang, and a mockingbird went through a complete song cycle, including an imitation of a hawk and a kingfisher!

The distinctive call of White-crowned sparrows was fun to hear, too.

But, the highlight of our walk was a group of Cedar Waxwings taking a break for a little sunning. Busy this time of the year eating berries of various sorts, they're usually on the move, cycling from tree perches to shrubs.

But here are several just apparently soaking in some sun.

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