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September 21, 2013 / Leslie

Weekend Birding: Blurry Birds and How Did That Get Up There?

When I’m out walking and looking for birds I’m usually gazing up at the trees. One of the easiest ways to find birds, is to scan the tops of dead trees. That can be dangerous in more ways than one, the most common problem is stepping into a hole and twisting my knee or ankle, but that’s another story. And yes, it’s happened.


Last week I saw a lot of birds but most were hiding behind leaves or in constant motion resulting in blurred photos. I did find this large green ball way up in one of the trees. It looks suspiciously like a walnut but someone had to put it there. The trees around it were all dead so it didn’t just fall down. Perhaps a squirrel who hasn’t learned how to safely stash food for the winter.


It was pretty high up there. Now I’m curious to see if it’s still there when I go for my walk today.

As for the birds, last week I saw a lot of beautiful warblers which have begin to migrate through the Chicago area. Warblers are one of the most difficult birds to photograph and to identify. They are fast, tiny, look a lot alike and tend to hide in the leaves.

Magnolia Warbler

This is a Magnolia Warbler, a gorgeous bird that I only see during migration. A quick fan of the tail was all I could capture before the bird dove back behind the leaves.

Saturday Snapshot was originated by Alyce at At Home With Books. For the summer it will be hosted by Melinda of West Metro Mommy. Visit her blog to see more great photos or add your own.

© 2013 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.



Leave a Comment
  1. irene / Sep 21 2013 10:36 am

    He’s lovely, and yes that must have been a squirrel with issues.


  2. laurelrainsnow / Sep 21 2013 11:08 am

    What an intriguing journey you had! And I wonder how that ball got up there, too. I love the sound of the word “Warbler.” It has a joyful ring to it. Thanks for sharing.


    • Leslie / Sep 21 2013 11:20 am

      And they have a joyful song. They sing more in the spring but some of them can be heard in the autumn too.


  3. Ginny / Sep 21 2013 1:21 pm

    It does look rather like some sort of fruit. I wonder if you will be able to find it when it falls down. You need a good windy day.


  4. Rahul / Sep 21 2013 1:30 pm

    That is a unique bird.. thanks for sharing.


  5. Elizabeth / Sep 21 2013 2:23 pm

    So cool…looks like a pear….thanks.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog too with the “cloudless sky.” It wasn’t today, though. It was on last Tuesday that it was cloudless. It is pouring down rain here today. 🙂

    Silver’s Reviews
    My Saturday Snapshot


  6. A.M.B. / Sep 21 2013 2:29 pm

    I love unexpected finds while looking for birds! Like you, I walk around with my eyes on shrubs and tree tops, and I might just miss that pothole or pile of dog poop right in front of me. Oh well!


    • Leslie / Sep 21 2013 2:42 pm

      Yup, dog poop is another danger!


  7. readerbuzz / Sep 21 2013 2:33 pm

    Never thought about seeking out dead trees for birds but, yes, that sounds right. Thanks for these photos.


    • Leslie / Sep 21 2013 2:45 pm

      Some species such as raptors like to sit up high and scan the area. Woodpeckers love dead trees. And sometimes birds like Starlings just collect up there, perhaps it’s the agreed upon meeting place.


  8. Anne Bennett / Sep 21 2013 3:00 pm

    You inspire me to get out there and take some nature photos. Please take a look at my page:
    Anne’s Snapshot Saturday


  9. Allison / Sep 21 2013 3:00 pm

    Great warbler photo! My husband and I like to take bird shots too.

    The ball kind of looks like fruit. If it had more bumps, I’d think it were the weird fruit from the Osage Orange tree.


    • Leslie / Sep 21 2013 3:43 pm

      We have Osage Orange trees on the other side of the park but no, not bumpy enough. I’m still thinking it’s a Black Walnut, they are green like that before ripening.


  10. Vicki / Sep 21 2013 3:34 pm

    I love the shot of the fanned tail! I hope you find out exactly what that is up in the tree!


  11. BermudaOnion / Sep 21 2013 3:39 pm

    I bet walking with you is a lot of fun!


    • Leslie / Sep 21 2013 3:45 pm

      Well, thanks! My husband doesn’t like to walk with me, he said I stop and look around too much.


  12. Christine Harding / Sep 21 2013 3:53 pm

    The bird is beautiful, and quite well camouflaged I think – the green matches the leaves, and the banding on the tail could be shadows on the branches… Thanks for visiting my blog.


  13. Louise / Sep 21 2013 5:10 pm

    Fun post Leslie. You do never know what you’ll see. Sometimes one of life’s little mysteries. And birdwatching can certainly be an extreme sport with it’s own injuries and dangers. My husband doesn’t like going birdwatching with me either, he likes just walking, and powering on all the time. I’ll stop and try and see things or photograph them.


  14. Suko / Sep 21 2013 6:27 pm

    More spectacular photos! You inspire me to look more more closely at the birds I see outside.


  15. cherylmahoney / Sep 21 2013 9:07 pm

    Haha, I love imagining a squirrel thinking he’s found such a clever place to stash something…


  16. Peggy@Peggy Ann's Post / Sep 22 2013 9:49 pm

    Nice shot!


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