Some Songbirds

Pine Siskin
Orangevale, CA; DEC 2020

I am sharing a few songbirds that we see here in the Sacramento area. I’m especially excited about the Pine Siskin. This winter is the first we’ve had them visit our feeder, or at least the first time I’ve recognized one.

Please click on caption to see image at higher resolution.

Savannah Sparrow
Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, Davis, CA; DEC 2020
Dark-eyed Junco – Oregon Subspecies
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; JAN 2020
Hermit Thrush
Mississippi Bar
American River Parkway, Orangevale, CA; DEC 2020

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Wandering Around Effie Yeaw Nature Center

Crepuscular Rays at Sunrise
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; NOV 2020

I am a volunteer at the Effie Yeaw Nature Center (sacnaturecenter.net) in the Carmichael section of Sacramento, CA.  The center is a nature study area along the American River Parkway that provides nature classes for children and adults alike. It was named for Effie Yeaw, a teacher, conservationist and environmental educator who led natural and cultural history walks in an area known as Deterding Woods, located along the American River in Carmichael. It spans 100 acres replete with trails through a riparian woodland and along the American River. Black-tailed Mule Deer, Wild Turkeys, Acorn Woodpeckers, Fox Squirrels and California Ground Squirrels are often an attraction when wandering through the center. But watching closely, you’ll see many species of birds and sometimes a coyote.

I am a Trail Steward. My job is to walk the trails, report any issues, pick up litter and answer questions from visitors. But, most of all, I get to hike and to photograph what I see, while providing this labor of love. I even get to write a blog and share my photography. It is a dream job.

This blog is based on one I wrote for the Nature center. I am sharing it so all my friends and followers can see one of my favorite places. This will be the first. I will share more over the next few months. Meanwhile, you can see many more photos of Effie Yeaw Nature Center at https://larryklink.smugmug.com/EYNC/. Better yet, if you live in the Sacramento Region, make a visit, bring the kids and grandkids.

Female Acorn Woodpecker Building It’s Larder
Chipping away, the Acorn Woodpecker prepares another hole in which it will store an acorn. Note the flying wood chips.
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; NOV 2020

This is an Acorn Woodpecker. The Acorn Woodpecker uses its beak to drill holes where it stores acorns. Once the hole is ready, it will pound in an acorn for later use.  In this picture, the woodpecker was drilling a hole. If you look closely, you can see wood chips in the air. Also note that some of the existing holes are empty and others have acorns.

Oak with Moss at Sunrise
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; NOV 2020
The Contenders – Wild Turkeys
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; DEC 2020
Sunrise along Meadow Trail
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; NOV 2020
The Pointer – California Ground Squirrel
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; NOV 2020
The Pond
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; NOV 2020

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Some Raptors

Red-tailed Hawk
Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge, Willows, CA; NOV 2020

I am sharing images of 3 raptors, i.e., birds of prey. Take note of the image of the White-tailed Kite in the air. It was kiting, its characteristic behavior of hovering over potential prey before it drops down to catch it.

Please click on caption to see images at higher resolution.

Red-tailed Hawk
Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge, Willows, CA; NOV 2020
White-tailed Kite
Davis, CA; APR 2019
White-tailed Kite
Mather Park, Sacramento, CA; JUN 2019
1st Year Juvenile Sharp-shinned Hawk
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; JAN 2020
1st Year Juvenile Sharp-shinned Hawk
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; JAN 2020

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Not Just A Duck

Four images of various specise of ducks.
Female Mallard Duck
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; SEP 2019

In a blog I follow and enjoy, Peace of Life Today, the author shared the post “Just A Duck” which contained some beautiful photos of a female Mallard. Until a few years ago, that is what they were to me. I could identify a white domestic duck and a male Mallard. I have heard people talk about a variety of ducks, but they were just some abstract concept. Then I met some new friends who were wildlife photographers. They taught me that we live in the Pacific Flyway, a migration route and wintering ground for many species of waterfowl. They, along with other birding friends, taught me about Mergansers, Golden Eye’s, Teals, and many more. The diversity and beauty of these creatures is astounding. For me, there is no such thing as just a duck anymore and I am better for it.

Please click on caption to see image at higher resolution.

Wood Duck Inspecting Possible Nest
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAR 2019
Common Merganser
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; JUL 2020 #Photography
Female and 2 Male Barrows Goldeneyes
Lake Natomas, American River Parkway, Gold River, CA; NOV 2019

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Errata: In my original post, I misidentified the Goldeneyes. They are Barrows Goldeneyes, not Common Goldeneyes.

California Scrub Jay

California Scrub Jay Eating Dragonfly
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; SEP 2019

I was fortunate enough to observe a California Scrub Jay (Aphelocoma californica) in the process of eating a dragonfly. It used its beak and talons to position the insect, then picked it up with its beak and swallowed it.

Please click on caption to see image at higher resolution.

California Scrub Jay Eating Dragonfly
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; SEP 2019

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Breakfast Time

Downy Woodpecker on Oak Gall
Willow Creek State Recreation Area, American River Parkway, Folsom, CA; AUG 2020

I am sharing images of birds and of an otter that are enjoying breakfast time. I watched as they worked hard to get their meal.

This year, I have had many opportunities to see animals hunt and eat. I am truly grateful to have had those opportunities and thankful that I only had to pull mine from a cupboard.

Please click on caption to see image at higher resolution.

Acorn Woodpecker
Mississippi Bar, American River Parkway, Orangevale, CA; AUG 2020
Female Belted Kingfisher
Mississippi Bar, American River Parkway, Orangevale, CA; JUL 2020
House Finch on Blue Elderberry
Mississippi Bar, American River Parkway, Orangevale, CA; JUL 2020
Juvenile American Robins
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; JUL 2020
Great Blue Heron with Prey
Mississippi Bar, American River Parkway, Orangevale, CA; JUL 2020
River Otter with Prey
Sailor Bar, American River Parkway, Fair Oaks, CA; AUG 2020

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

A Few California Landscapes

Old Barn
On Rt 20 Between Sacramento and Ft Bragg CA

Todays post contains some images from various spots around California.

Please click on caption to see images in higher resolution!

A Windy Autumn Day on Convict Lake
Convict Lake, CA; OCT 2019
Cherry Blossoms
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAR 2019
Sunrise on the American River
William Pond Park, Sacramento, CA. FEB 2016
Autumn at the edge of the Desert
Route 395, Near Rovana, CA; OCT 2019

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Cute Chicks – Part 1

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) with Goslings
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020

I am presenting the first of 2 parts entitled Cute Chicks. This part will present some local waterfowl.

One of the images is entitled Huddled Sord of Baby Mallards. I learned that a group of Mallards in flight is called a flock or sometimes a flight. Mallards on the ground are called a SORD. If the name sounds weird, it is because it appears to have no other uses.

Female Mallard Duck (Anas platyrhynchos) with Ducklings
Mississippi Bar, American River Parkway, Orangevale, CA; MAY 2020
Mute Swans (Cygnus Olor) with Young
Mather Lake Regional Park, Sacramento, CA; JUN 2020
Wood Ducks (Aix sponsa) with Ducklings
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) with Young
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Huddled Sord of Baby Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos)
Sailor Bar, American River Parkway, Fair Oaks, CA; MAY 2020
Juvenile Canada Geese (Branta canadensis)
Mather Lake Regional Park, Sacramento, CA; JUN 2020

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Egrets and Lizardicide

Great Egret (Ardea Alba)
Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, Davis, CA; MAY 2020

In this post, I am presenting 2 perspectives on the egret: the graceful, beautiful side and the visceral side.

A few weeks ago, we were at the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Refuge in Davis, CA. In one of the sloughs, there were perhaps a dozen Egrets, both Snowy Egrets and Great Egrets. It turned out to be a great day for capturing them in flight.

Please click on caption to see image at higher resolution.

Snowy Egret (Egretta thula)
Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, Davis, CA; MAY 2020
Snowy Egrets (Egretta thula)
Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, Davis, CA; MAY 2020

The lizardicide, killing of a western fence lizard for food, happened at Effie Yeaw Nature Center. It was fascinating to watch. The actual capture was done in tall grass under the shade of a tree. After capture, the Great Egret made a short hop/flight out to the trail then prepared to devour his prey. The intrepid little lizard put up a strong fight but, in the end, it succumbed.

Stalking
Great Egret (Ardea Alba)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; JUN 2020
The Lizard’s Gambit
Great Egret (Ardea Alba) with Western Fence Lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; JUN 2020
The Struggle
Positioning
The Swallow

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.

Young Hawks

Adult and Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020

This spring, a pair of Red-shouldered Hawks gave birth to a pair of chicks at Effie Yeaw Nature Center in Sacramento. Hawk babies are often born at the center. What made this remarkable is they nested at a place where you could see them well enough to photograph them. Today, I am sharing some baby pictures.

The first image is one of the adults at the nest. I do not know if it is the male or female. I don’t know how to tell them apart, except that the female is usually larger. After that image we entered the period of stay-at-home, so I missed a few weeks of photographing the nest. When I returned the nest appeared empty. But, as I watched, I could see a small crest of white down peeking above the rim of the nest. On my next weekly visit, there was no activity at the nest. But, the next week, I saw an adult and 2 babies; one beginning to have feathers, the other still in down.  The following week, the older of the 2 had more well-developed feathers and was branching, i.e. climbing out on nearby branches. The smaller had its first feathers also. An adult was perched on a nearby snag calling out and the older baby was returning the call.

In the past 2 weeks, there has been no activity in the nest. Both babies should have been large enough to see even if sleeping. In fact, they should have both been branching. I am hoping that at least the older one has fledged but I don’t know. I will probably never know the outcome.

Please click on caption to see image at higher resolution.

Adult Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus) at Nest
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAR 2020

First Week That I Saw Babies

Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Adult and Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Adult and Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Adult and Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Adult and Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020

Second Week I saw Babies

Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus)
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020
Adult Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo virginianus) Calling to Young
Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Sacramento, CA; MAY 2020

Please visit my website, www.earthwatcher.us to see my collection of landscapes and wildlife.

These and other images are available to purchase by contacting larry.klink@earthwatcher.us.