Sunday, August 2, 2009

Northern Cardinal x Turkey Vulture! Who knew?

Today, my son asked, "Dad, will you take my birding" - he is 5! How could I say no? We finished up lunch and my son, my daughter, and I took off to do a short birding trip to Southwestway Park in Indianapolis, IN. Here are a few pictures from the day. Although I am always happy to spend time in nature with my kids, I am more amazed at what they discover and what fascinates them. Sometimes they get excited over a bird, an insect, or even a rock, whatever it may be, I know that it is my job to acknowledge their excitement with our natural world. This will ensure they take care of it in the future!
And this Cardinal?

Bald headed Northern Cardinal... Indianapolis, IN. This lovely Cardinal has been visiting my feeder for about 3 weeks now and just doesn't seem to be getting any prettier. My kids keep referring to it as a Turkey Vulture Cardinal! Apparently, this unusual molt happens periodically in both Cardinals and Blue Jays. The issue has yet to be thoroughly studied. You can read more at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/pfw/AboutBirdsandFeeding/BaldBirds.htm
Unknown Insect (at the moment)... Indianapolis, IN. I am not sure what this is but my daughter pointed it out and wanted me to take a picture. The picture came out so good I thought it would be worthy to share.

Scarlet Tanager... Indianapolis, IN. Like so many birds, I just can't get enough of this one. So beautiful. This one is a juvenile male. It was in the company of 2 others and some Indigo Buntings. A beautiful make-up of birds, unfortunately, I could not get them in one picture. Scarlet Tanagers winter in southern Central America and northwest South America.

Pearl Crescent... Indianapolis, IN. Birding is so much more than just birds. Don't get me wrong - it is the focus! However, there are so many beautiful things that surround you as you bird - like this butterfly. All you have to do is look around. We are so blessed!

2 comments:

Kelly said...

Oh no! Poor Red! I've never seen one quite that bald before...

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Chad.. Thanks for visiting my blog. I too am obsessed with birds--but mostly the ones who visit my backyard.. I did not become a bird lover until a year ago when I had a family of Bluebirds nest in my backyard. That caught my attention BIGTIME. Sometime when you have a chance, check out the blogs in two categories on my sidbar (BIRDS and BLUEBIRDS).. You will enjoy my pictures.

I've enjoyed looking at your blog. I've never seen a tanager before. Would LOVE to see one in addition to an Indigo Bunting.

Come back anytime.. I don't always post about birds--but I still do quite often.
Betsy

Indiana State Bird

Indiana State Bird
Northern Cardinal