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What

Common Porcupine Erethizon dorsatum

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 25, 2017 03:37 PM CDT

Description

DOR

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What

Eastern Amberwing Perithemis tenera

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 12:34 PM CDT

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What

Black-tailed Jackrabbit Lepus californicus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 08:12 AM CDT

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What

Eastern Ringtail Erpetogomphus designatus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 10:45 AM CDT

Description

pair in copula

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What

Common Mestra Mestra amymone

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 10:31 AM CDT

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Hayhurst's Scallopwing Staphylus hayhurstii

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 10:06 AM CDT

Description

I think this is Hayhurst's Scallopwing, but if not I'm sure some of you lep folks will let me know. Only got this single image then it was gone.

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What

Roseate Skimmer Orthemis ferruginea

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 10:22 AM CDT

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What

Great Pondhawk Erythemis vesiculosa

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 10:06 AM CDT

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Celia's Roadside-Skipper Amblyscirtes celia

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 09:42 AM CDT

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Russet-tipped Clubtail Stylurus plagiatus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 09:20 AM CDT

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Hawaiian Beet Webworm Spoladea recurvalis

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 08:57 AM CDT

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Pearl Crescent Phyciodes tharos

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 08:56 AM CDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Blue-faced Ringtail Erpetogomphus eutainia

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 21, 2017 08:33 AM CDT

Description

@centratex @dhend9 and I met up with another friend and spent a few hours this morning in Gonzales looking for BLue-faced Ringtaill and other critters. WE likely saw 20+ BF Ringtails, the most I had ever seen in a single day. @dhend9 found a pair in copula which was only the 2nd time I had ever photographed that behavior in this species.

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What

White-tailed Deer Odocoileus virginianus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 20, 2017 04:03 PM CDT

Description

The White-tailed Deer fawns are feeding on their own on other forage, but when mom is around a little milk supplement is always appreciated!

Photos / Sounds

What

Piping Plover Charadrius melodus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 05:03 PM CDT

Place

Texas, US (Google, OSM)

Description

newly arriving bird from the breeding grounds in the north. I will submit the banding data to proper folks.

Photos / Sounds

What

Elegant Tern Thalasseus elegans

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:58 PM CDT

Place

Texas, US (Google, OSM)

Description

This will be way overkill in regards to photos but this was a very exciting discovery for @upupamartin and me.

Elegant Tern
Thalasseus elegans
North Padre Island,
Kleberg Co., Texas
18 July 2017

Details: Martin Reid @upupamartin and I decided to make a day trip to the Corpus Christi area to look for dragonflies. We spent some time in Kingsville as well as Corpus Christi and by 1 PM it was so hot that our enthusiasm for continuing to walk in the sun and heat was waning (or at least my enthusiasm was waning!) so we decided to do a little beach driving to see what birds the late summer might be returning to the Texas coast before we had to drive home to San Antonio and Austin. We drove down to Padre Island National Seashore and checked out Bird Island Basin and Malaquite Beach and noted many flocks of hundreds of Black Terns as well as Least Terns, Royals, and the other expected Texas coast species of late July. At about 3:30 PM we drove north on the beach heading north toward the Bob Hall Pier and left the national seashore. We were about 3/4 mile north of the national seashore boundary when we noted a juvenile Royal Tern pestering an adult so I thought I’d try to get a few shots of this interaction. I turned the front of my vehicle toward the surf so I could take some shots out the driver’s window with the sun more or less from behind but still quite high overhead. As I am taking the shots of the two Royals:
http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/7118108
something in the background caught my eye. There was another tern with a very long, very slender, and very bright orange/red bill with a full black shaggy crest. I thought to myself that it looked like an Elegant Tern, but then thought to myself…this is Texas, that is normally a Pacific coast bird. As I am still looking through my camera I saw a second bird that looked like an Elegant Tern. Then both birds started preening and the bills were no longer visible. I told Martin that I think there are two Elegant Terns here. Martin was also looking but at the moment the birds had their bills hidden while preening. The two suspect terns were physically smaller than Royals, perhaps the size of Sandwich Terns or a little larger by direct comparison. Martin said something to the effect of “Are you sure?” and at that moment I started to doubt what I had seen, but then one of the terns picked its bill up and I said rather emphatically “Those are Elegant Terns!”. Martin said something like “uh…yes, yes yes!” or words to that effect. We started taking photos, and in the end together we likely shot 600+ images of these birds. We were with the birds for just over an hour and 15 minutes. The information on these birds was posted to various bird alerts by Sheridan Coffey, Martin’s wife, and we sent her an image or two from the back viewer on the camera. We called several people, but most were too far away to get to our location the same afternoon. Both Mel Cooksey and Jon McIntyre got to us within about 45 minutes and were both able to see and photograph the birds extensively. Jon @mako252 has some shots on iNat at:
http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/7110585

Elegant Tern has six previous records for Texas, so this should be the 7th.

Description: These were medium to large terns, perhaps slightly larger than adjacent Sandwich Terns. They seemed to be ca. 80% the size and bulk of adjacent Royal Terns; but obviously smaller. One of the Elegant Terns was still in mostly breeding plumage with more or less a full black, shaggy crest. There were a few white spots showing up on the forehead. The second Elegant Tern had a mostly white fore crown but still displayed a shaggy crest. Their bills were bright red/orange, as long or longer than Royal Terns, but very thin and almost slightly de-curved looking. Refer to the images for more information. Martin and I both have seen many Elegant Terns in California, Mexico and various South America locations so we have some experience with the ID of the species.

Image 1: shows the adult and juv. Royal Tern I was photographing for:
http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/7118108
and in the center of the shot you can see what caught my eye…an Elegant Tern.
Image 2: Elegant Tern with Sandwich and Black Terns
Image 3: Good view of bill shape and structure of one of the Elegant Terns
Image 4: Elegant Tern in center
Image 5, 6: Two Royal Terns in front, Elegant in rear
Image 7, 8: both Elegant Terns
Image 9, 10: side by side comparison of the bills of a Royal Tern and an Elegant Tern
Image 11: Elegant Tern
Image 12: Elegant Tern in front on Royal Tern. Even though the Elegant is closer to the camera, note the larger size and bulk of the Royal.
Image 13, 14: Two Elegants and two Royals
Image 15: both Elegant Terns
Image 16: one Elegant Tern
Image 17, 18: wing stretch by an Elegant Tern near two Laughing Gulls
Image 19-26: Elegant Tern bathing

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What

Royal Tern Thalasseus maximus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:56 PM CDT

Description

juvenile bird (on the left) following the adult

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Gull-billed Tern Gelochelidon nilotica

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:51 PM CDT

Description

This species is more often seen around ponds, lakes and marshes and not so commonly observed on the Gulf beach, but we saw quite a few today.

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What

Willet Tringa semipalmata

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:50 PM CDT

Description

likely Western Willet on right and Eastern on left but I will just leave this at species level. Eastern breeds in Texas but Westerns start showing up this time of year to winter here.

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Long-billed Curlew Numenius americanus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:41 PM CDT

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Brown Pelican Pelecanus occidentalis

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:39 PM CDT

Description

with assorted terns

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Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:05 PM CDT

Description

Two Caspian Terns on left; two Royal Terns on right. Three Black Terns also in view.

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What

Sandwich Tern Thalasseus sandvicensis

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:05 PM CDT

Description

on far right

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Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:01 PM CDT

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Least Tern Sternula antillarum

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 03:00 PM CDT

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Black Tern Chlidonias niger

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 02:54 PM CDT

Description

Black Tern in back, Common Tern in foreground

Photos / Sounds

What

Sandwich Tern Thalasseus sandvicensis

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 02:50 PM CDT

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What

Laughing Gull Leucophaeus atricilla

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 02:50 PM CDT

Description

juvenile bird in center

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Royal Tern Thalasseus maximus

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 02:50 PM CDT

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Common Tern Sterna hirundo

Observer

greglasley

Date

July 18, 2017 02:49 PM CDT

Description

many hundreds of Common Terns were on the beach today....just coming back from breeding areas in the north.

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