American Avocet (three photos)

I have a long standing fascination of the American Avocet. Much of it stems from the twenty or so years it took me to see an avocet in person. Still today, the upturned bill and seasonal color variations stir interest in the bird.

Avocet 1The deceptive personality of the American Avocet is also intriguing. Tall and slender, the avocet seems like a mild mannered ave. Yet it will strike at predators, challenging hawks and corvids alike.

Avocet 2The American Avocet also at times employs an interesting defensive technique. It will gradually change pitch in a series of calls to hamper the ability of predators to zone in on it’s location.

Avocet 3

Arizona Cardinal (two photos)

Desert Card 2Northern Cardinals are popular in America, honored as the state bird in seven states. These photos were taken with a friend at the base of Tonto National Monument near Globe, AZ. We agreed they were the most uniquely colored Cardinals we had ever seen, different from the Cardinals in the Midwest. This male was photographed on a cloudy day. I’m guessing it has something to do with minerals absorbed into plants.

Desert Card 1

In Honor of Halloween (one photo)

I know, I know, the Double-crested Cormorant is not usually associated with Halloween. I want to know why it isn’t.

  • Dark, oily feathers
  • Long, snaky neck
  • Piercing eyes
  • Pointy downturned beak

Maybe the cormorant will never catch on for All Hallows Eve. At the very least, I found a creative way around publishing the usual crows and ravens for Halloween.

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