Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Wet Birds & Birders

A (wet) male black-throated blue warbler on Sugar Creek Mountain.

The rain came down on a regular basis from Tuesday evening through Sunday morning at the New River Birding Festival near Fayetteville, West Virginia. Wet weather is typical of the Appalachian Mountains in spring—it's one of the reasons the area is so lush and green.

While the bird watchers were undaunted by the precipitation, it was horrible for bird photography. I didn't even bother carrying my camera outside the van on most of the trips I lead. There was no light and nice cameras and wet, humid weather are unhappy bedfellows.

I did manage to get a few non-keeper shots of my favorite warbler: a male black-throated blue warbler which we found on the Sugar Creek mountain trip. There's something about this bird's color scheme that I find incredibly appealing. You can see how wet it was—there are water droplets on every branch in the photo!

More from the New River Birding & Nature Festival tomorrow when I will take you on a tree-top adventure.

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At 1:39 AM, Anonymous Jen "Display homes" Ambers said...

Are you cold little fella?
Poor thing!

At 5:43 AM, Blogger Mary said...

Likewise - my camera stayed under cover most of the time so I have very few bird photos. Your black-throated blue is sweet!

At 5:48 AM, Blogger Erik said...

That looks like just about every photo of a BTBW I've taken. There always seems to be a twig, branch, or leaf in the way. For a species that likes to hang out closer to the ground, they are hard to photograph.

At 9:37 AM, Blogger nina at Nature Remains. said...

I'm so glad to see I'm not alone in wishing I'd been able to grab more shots.
But, there's something very lovely about those mountains, shrouded in cloud, dripping in rain.
Something very, very deep that I will hold onto...in my mind.

At 12:16 PM, Anonymous Kenton and Rebecca said...

Thanks for introducing us to a new warbler. We've never seen one -- not even in a photo! Our guidebook tells us that they are just outside our range -- the line looks like it ends about an hour east of us -- so perhaps there's still a chance for us to spot one if we keep a good look-out =)

At 1:53 PM, Blogger Heron said...

We enjoy your word pictures and understand that the rain precluded much photography. Hope you all had a wonderful time even with the less than perfect weather.

At 5:46 PM, Blogger Anne said...

I saw one of those last weekend at Magee Marsh! I'm really enjoying being a new birder--practically every bird I see is a life bird.

At 3:23 AM, Blogger Kathiesbirds said...

Yeah, I came back with a lot of non-bird photos for the same reason as you but I hauled my camera around anyways! You couldn't see me though because I was the one in the camoflaged army rain poncho! They don't sell rain coats in the desert where I live! (BTW, I was never actually on one of your trips but I thoroughly enjoyed the Swinging Orangoutangs on Saturday night!)


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