Of course, after a while the same individuals and lesser numbers of birds can seem a bit mundane I suppose, but fortunately many of us travel to other's backyards in the warmer summer months. This was the case for me recently when I skipped across to Utah for the American Birding Association's annual Convention held at the Snowbird Ski Resort. Even while working a booth in the vendor area, I was able to view a feeders flush with Cassin's Finches and Pine Siskins, with Cordilleran Flycatchers "Pi-peet!"ing right out the door.
Even wide spread species like Warbling Vireos are not a bird that nests in the sub-tropical regions of Florida so these even offered a different feel from my backyard. However, careful observations also showed these birds sang and looked a lot different than Warbling Vireos from the NE United States. This western subspecies had a more succinct song and was darker marked overall.
I even miss the "in your face" nesting antics of the American Robin in my deep south digs, so this too was a different experience I can't see at home. Of course, it was interesting to note there were no worms this trip. A mouth full-o-wasps (or similar) will have to suffice.
Of course not all of the species up here were widespread, Dusky Flycatchers bred just up the road, MacGillviray's Warblers sang from nearly every bush (it seemed) at Snowbird, and I was thrilled to catch up with the old friend above I haven't seen in years. I was real fortunate to observe a unique display as I watched him. In the image above and even more so in the video clip below you can see this wonderful territorial wing display. I'd always wondered why an otherwise drab ground-dweller would want to have brilliant yellow-green, iridescent upperwings. Now I know! What better way to send the message, "This is my territory get out now!" than a brilliant flash of color?!?...
The video clip and still image above were taken through the Leica APO Televid spotting scope with the same small digital point & shoot camera, the Leica C-Lux 2! Most modern point & shoots offer unlimited video capabilities that are ideal for capturing rare moments like these.