Author Topic: My Nebraska  (Read 145673 times)

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Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1095 on: October 25, 2019, 08:00:27 PM »
Boy it has been busy around here but I got out for a little last weekend.  The weather was not too bad.  The winter migration has been going on and I happen to be out in the area where the Sandhill cranes stop during spring.  Well I heard the familiar call and I looked up and saw a number of Sandhill cranes flying in formation heading south.



A large flock of black birds and starlings I think flew in a nice murmation in front of me.  So neat that they don't fly into one another.



Life along the platte river,  beauty in the river and in the sky



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Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1096 on: October 29, 2019, 05:54:25 PM »
Finally I was out by the river but almost missed the glowing sunset.



Halloween is close and have a few pumpkins available but not for carving jack-o-lanterns they are for the squirrels.  They love the seeds and also eating the pumpkin.  So my treat to them is a few pumpkins.



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Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1097 on: November 03, 2019, 10:50:36 AM »
Wow oh Wow ----   When birding and looking for migrating birds you always hope you can come across some birds that you haven't seen or would really like to see.  As you know my license plate on my car says "CRAINIAC" ,  I enjoy the spring when the sandhills cranes stop here for a few weeks and I docent tours with guests to watch them from blinds, well there is a short time when they fly back south for the winter and along with the Sandhill Cranes there are  Whooping Cranes that stop here also.
 
The Whooping Crane numbers have been increasing little by little thanks to the great effort of many people and places.  Still seeing them is never a guarantee and they don't stay in Nebraska long.  During crane season, being spring or fall there is a group that flies a small plane along the river early in the morning  spotting and counting Cranes.  A bird nerd friend helps as a spotter and had info that a small group was seen the night before when they flew into the river to roost for the night.  She asked if I would be interested in a morning trip to a blind and see if they were still there. How could I not go,  right!

 We headed out way before light and found our way in the darkness to the blind.  We could see the stars which meant it was going to be a clear morning,  that also meant it was going to be COLD.   So we waited and waited,  it began to get light and some ducks started to fly, heard some duck calls and then .....  looking straight across from the blind I saw something moving on the other side of the river.  Maybe it was a deer or something in the water,  we kept watching because there still wasn't good light. Then it happened 4 birds appeared on the sandbar in the Platte River.  We jumped  up and down (also that helped us warm up so we could use our fingers).  We got to enjoy them for a good amount of time as the light got better.

There was 3 adults and one youngster,  the family seemed to have leg bands on while the other adult didn't.  After a bit the took off from the river and we watched which direction the flew.  Our hope now was to drive that way and find them in the meadow.  We find a ground spotter for the airplane and he said they were just a mile east of his location so we were off.  Seeing the tall white birds in the field was amazing.  We found a spot to stop and get a few pictures,  again an amazing moment to see them.















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Offline NancyM

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1098 on: November 03, 2019, 12:27:09 PM »
AWESOME sighting and photos, Deb!

Offline mishikeenhquay

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1099 on: November 10, 2019, 04:59:09 AM »

Your photos are fantastic Deb!
"Our true enemies, as well as our true sources of strength, lie within."

Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1100 on: November 11, 2019, 07:59:59 PM »
I am excited to see an eagle couple take on a new territory.  They had been working on the nest but was so hard to see with the leaves, well now the trees are bare and you can see the nest nicely.   Sunday I went for a look and saw only the female show up.  She landed on the nest tree for a bit and then flew off to another tree.  Looking closer at her beak it seems there is a bit of red on it,  she must have been off eating somewhere.  Maybe the male was still there.








Also present a nice young Red Tail hawk visited




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Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1101 on: November 16, 2019, 08:19:28 PM »
Now I get to post some eagle nest updates.  I visited the nest this afternoon, first one eagle arrived and landed on the nest tree above the nest.  Soon some calls and the second eagle arrived and landed very close to the first eagle.  They were happy to sit and do some preening.  Then one took off and while I was there the remaining eagle still stayed.  I am excited that at this time the trees are without leaves,  but dang you still have to contend with branches.  LOL









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Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1102 on: November 16, 2019, 08:26:29 PM »
Today another nice bird flew by.  It was a Northern Harrier,  most of the time I see them in the distance but today I was able to get a couple photos of it.  Just look at this face,  really reminds you of an owl somewhat.  They love to fly over the prairies scanning for food. 





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Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1103 on: November 16, 2019, 08:30:46 PM »
The full moon was a few days ago,  and maybe you don't think of seeing the moon during the day but this was just after sun up.  So the moon was on its way to setting for the night.  Such pretty light this morning


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Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1104 on: November 17, 2019, 07:51:15 PM »
While up doing a school science day the room next to where I was found a Tiger Salamander crawling in the room.  They caught it and I asked to take it back with me.  They are pretty hard to find,  they live around vernal pools and wetlands.   They can be found in other places also, they make a burrow in the ground and can withstand the cold.  They eat worms, crickets, mealworms and superworms, they emerge from their burrow at night to feed.  They are mainly terrestrial and usually only return to the water to breed,  they are good swimmers also.  Their markings can be variable from one area to another.  Like anything pollution and habitat loss is affection their numbers.





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Offline jeavverhey

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1105 on: November 18, 2019, 06:14:09 AM »
wow - so cool Deb :whistle :nod2

Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1106 on: November 26, 2019, 07:49:59 PM »
This is totally a different post from my normal photos.  I work at a really neat place and photography was really important to the man that the center is named for, The Edgerton Explorit Center.  Harrold "Doc" Edgerton was the man who perfected the strobe flash.  He also did long exposure pictures and also sound trigger photos.  So the other day at work we decided to do some photos with a string of christmas lights.  These are some of them, nice and fun







A smile is the universal welcome- Max Eastman

Offline mishikeenhquay

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1107 on: December 01, 2019, 01:57:54 PM »


Wow Deb, these are awesome!  What fun!
"Our true enemies, as well as our true sources of strength, lie within."

Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1108 on: December 10, 2019, 07:49:02 PM »
I had a great weekend,  the weather was great and got to watch an eagle couple work on their nest.   This is a new nest being built I have heard, not sure what happened in the area last year.  As I drove up I saw one eagle flying into the trees so I got out of the car and sat on the ground by my car just off the road.
 The Nest is not far off the road in the tree line, it overlooks a great wetland protected area. 







grabbing a stick and flying it to the nest was so cool to see







I am looking forward to following this couple and wish them good luck this season
A smile is the universal welcome- Max Eastman

Offline gmadeb3

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Re: My Nebraska
« Reply #1109 on: December 10, 2019, 08:39:18 PM »
This time of year the Rough-legged Hawks come down from the north and stay.  I had been scouting for them but never close enough to make a good identification.  At the same area as the eagles I saw a hawk enjoying the breeze and scanning over the field.  I kept my fingers crossed that it would come close enough that i could tell what kind it was.  Lucky for me it took a few banking turns and I was able to get a good look.  Looking at the pattern under the wings you can really tell what kind of hawk it is.





This really shows the tail feathers nicely


Another bird that flew by was an adult Norther Harrier,  another nice view of the wing feather pattern






I liked this photo because it shows the long legs of the harrier

A smile is the universal welcome- Max Eastman