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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

December 28, 2013 12:08 PM CST

Description

Checking for Hawks Before Coming to Eat

Photos / Sounds

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Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

April 23, 2018 08:46 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, sandstone columns above the spillway
Easy Spider Meal
These non-biting midges are common on the sandstone pillars above the spillway. I also have often found them being eaten by spiders there. I'm guessing they are fairly easy to catch. I mostly see jumping and wolf spiders munching on them.
Female

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

December 29, 2013 12:17 PM CST

Description

For a Moment There I Thought it Was One Squirrel With 2 Tails

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

December 30, 2013 09:15 AM CST

Description

Scarface Paid Me a Visit
I'm guessing he gets in a lot of fights.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Thin-legged Wolf Spiders Genus Pardosa

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

April 23, 2018 08:42 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, walking path above the spillway
Wolfie
I was walking above the spillway when I ran across this wolf spider. It was eating a bug of some kind. I tried to get a better angle to find out what it was eating but the spider did not appreciate being disturbed. It took its meal and left. My best guess is the meal was either a midge or a moth.

Photos / Sounds

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 5, 2014 12:55 PM CST

Description

Baby squirrel can't quite make it up the pole

Photos / Sounds

What

Feral Pigeon Columba livia var. domestica

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

April 23, 2018 09:21 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, between Winsted parking lot & lower spillway steps
Photo 1:
Sunbathing
I walked up on a rock dove sunbathing in the grass.
Photo 2:
Ruffling the Feathers
While I watched, it stood up and faced in the opposite direction then fluffed out all its feathers. Possibly shaking out mites killed by the sun.
Photo 3:
This is My Better Side
It settled back down in the grass facing the other way now. Gave me a look as though to say: "That's better, you can take my picture now". So I did.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 8, 2014 10:03 AM CST

Description

I See You

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 10, 2014 10:58 AM CST

Description

Talk to the Tail

Photos / Sounds

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What

Northern Shoveler Spatula clypeata

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

May 14, 2018 10:40 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, Sunset Bay
No one has a bill like a shoveler, can't miss them.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 12, 2014 12:06 PM CST

Description

Sometimes Ya Just Gotta Scratch

Photos / Sounds

What

Downy Woodpecker Dryobates pubescens

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

April 22, 2018 09:57 AM CDT

Description

Photo 1:
Temper Tantrum
I had to chuckle at the antics of this little juvenile woodpecker. For several days his mother had brought him here and fed suet to him. Today the mother was at the suet basket but she stopped feeding him and was eating the suet herself. Junior fussed at her and raised the sparse red feathers on top of his head which was a woodpecker version of a temper tantrum.
Photo 2:
Junior Joins Mama
Mama ignored Junior's temper tantrum & continued eating. Junior finally flew over to the suet & continued to vocalize, demanding to be fed. You can see that his crest is still straight up. Mama does not have her crest raised. If she had been an unrelated female downy she would have raised her crest & driven the juvenile bird away. Instead she just ignored & ate.
Photo 3:
Tough Love
Mama's strategy worked. Junior finally started eating suet on his own. But as you can clearly see by his spiky raised crest, he is not happy about it.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 13, 2014 10:06 AM CST

Description

Aww, I Think He's Smiling

Photos / Sounds

What

American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

December 9, 2017 10:16 AM CST

Description

Photo 1:
Pecan Thieves
I saw two crows across the street eating something. Got my camera and stepped out to see what they were eating. Turns out they were eating pecans still in the shell. The crow on the left has already cracked its pecan and is picking out pieces of nut.
Photo 2:
Tiny Little Morsel
Crow holding a tiny bit of pecan pried from the shell.
Photo 3:
I Found One!
The second crow found an intact pecan & was squawking while holding it. After this shot, both crows flew off with the pecan.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 13, 2014 10:46 AM CST

Description

Winter Mating Season
When I researched fox squirrels in North Texas, it said they have 2 mating seasons, September and January. I first captured this behavior Sept 1, 2013. This one was taken Jan 13. 2014. Gonna have some cute babies in the spring.

Photos / Sounds

What

Anhinga Anhinga anhinga

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

August 14, 2018 10:31 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, canopy of the fish hatchery
Photo 1:
Deep in the Forest
When I was at the top of the spillway, I turned to go back down and looked over the forest below. I saw a familiar shape and used my camera to get a better look. So that is where the anhinga went. First time I've seen one in the tree canopy of the fish hatchery.
Photo 2:
Evergreen Perch
I zoomed all the way out and cropped to get as close a look as possible. She was sitting at the very top of an evergreen tree with her back to me. She has hung around for several weeks now.
Photo 3:
Anhinga Smile
If she was vocalizing, I was too far away to hear her. To me, she looks like she is smiling.
Photo 4:
I See You Back There
Surely I was too far away for her to actually see me but it sure looked like she turned around and spotted me. I looked down at the spillway at some sandpipers and when I looked back up, she was nowhere to be seen.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 18, 2014 05:31 PM CST

Description

I was sneaking up on this squirrel taking a nap in the fork of my tree when he heard me

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 20, 2014 11:26 AM CST

Description

I Wonder if I Can Make All Those Doves Scatter?

Photos / Sounds

What

Anhinga Anhinga anhinga

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

August 14, 2018 10:13 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, pool by the Winsted parking lot
Photo 1:
Deep in the Greenery
This time I found the anhinga in a tree across the Winsted parking lot pond. She looked a bit wet like she had just been fishing.
Photo 2:
Drying Her Wings
She stretched her wings out to let them air dry. Anhingas have a wingspan of three and a half feet.
Photo 3:
Anhinga Detail
I kept this one because it showed a lot of face and feather detail. Such strange looking feet, like flexible rubber flippers.
Photo 4:
See Ya Later
Abruptly she turned around and jumped deeper into the greenery and out of sight. Shows over. So I left that area and walked up the spillway path to the top of the dam.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

January 22, 2014 11:43 AM CST

Description

That's What Happens When You Chew With Your Mouth Open

Photos / Sounds

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What

American White Pelican Pelecanus erythrorhynchos

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

September 4, 2018 10:33 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, Sunset Bay
Pouch Full of Fish
The pelicans are returning to Sunset Bay like they do every year. This young one swam past me with a pouch full of fish.

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

February 5, 2014 10:43 AM CST

Description

Obviously plotting to take over the world

Photos / Sounds

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What

Black-chinned Hummingbird Archilochus alexandri

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

April 23, 2018 08:56 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, walking path above the spillway
Photo 1:
I See Purple!
Finally I can confirm a mature male black-chinned hummingbird. I was above the spillway at the lake & he was going for the red salvia. In this first shot the light was good enough to see some dark purple at the base of his throat. He also was a much lighter green than the deep emerald of a ruby-throated.
Photo 2:
This is How You Pollinate
Check out that yellow pollen on his bill.
Photo 3:
Mid Air Hover
He hovered in front of me beautifully for a few moments before flying out of sight. Shooting right into the sun was challenging and no time to move around to the other side. This encounter took place in the space of 9 seconds then it was over.

Photos / Sounds

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What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

February 6, 2014 10:01 AM CST

Description

Snowy squirrel

Photos / Sounds

What

Interior Least Tern Sternula antillarum ssp. athalassos

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

July 31, 2018 10:08 AM CDT

Place

Texas, US (Google, OSM)

Description

White Rock lake, spillway
12 part photo story (if anyone can identify the sandpipers I'll do separate observation for them, may be mix of least & western)
Photo 1:
Interior Least Tern Adult with Juvenile
I had heard there were least terns on the spillway so went looking. To my surprise I saw a family group. At first there was one adult and a juvenile exhibiting some begging behavior.
Photo 2:
Proof They Are Breeding Here
Most least terns breed along the coast but one subspecies is known to come inland and breed along rivers and lakes. They are called interior least terns and this subspecies was added to the endangered list in 1985 due to habitat loss. They are still on the list but their population is increasing. It was exciting to find out some have been breeding near my favorite lake.
Photo 3:
A 2nd Juvenile Joins Them
While I was watching, a second juvenile flew over and joined them. I caught it in the air so got a good look at the wings and tail.
Photo 4:
Parent With 2 Kids
I sent these photos to a local bird expert who is an ebird reviewer for our area. He confirmed this seemed to be a family group. He also felt they did indeed nest nearby. Over the past decade he had been involved in a long term project to establish a breeding colony which began in SouthSide in Dallas, then moved from there to Hagerman in good numbers. The young ones stayed with the parents into August. Very cool to see them show up at White Rock with young now.
Photo 5:
The Parent Spots Someone in the Air
The adult tern watches as another bird approaches from the sky. The two juveniles seem oblivious.
Photo 6:
Two Parents Now
The newcomer was another adult least tern, the 2nd parent. The family group is complete. Now the juveniles become aware of the 2nd bird. Can't tell which is mom or dad, both look alike.
Photo 7:
This One Brought a Fish
This parent arrived with food in tow. A fish! That got the immediate attention of one of the juveniles.
Photo 8:
Junior is Very Interested in That Fish
The parent dangled the fish in front of the juvenile. This had Junior's full attention. Mine too as I hoped to capture the parent feeding the juvenile.
Photo 9:
Tough Love
After dangling the fish in front of Junior, the parent walked away without offering it. It seemed this was an example of tough love to motivate the youngster to find it's own food.
Photo 10:
Life Lesson
Junior just stood there and stared as its parent walked further and further away with that wonderful fish. The other parent just watched it all without interfering.
Photo 11:
It's a Tough World Out There
Both juveniles watch as one parent walks further away with that fish & the other parent flies a short distance away. I believe the parents are trying to encourage the children to forage for their own food. And demonstrating what to look for.
Photo 12:
Gummy Fish
Last shot I took as the parent positioned the fish for eating. The fish reminded me of a gummy worm. The parent gulped down the fish and flew off, presumably to find another.

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

February 12, 2014 12:51 PM CST

Description

Is the Coast Clear?

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

February 17, 2014 04:39 PM CST

Description

You Can't See Me, I'm Just One of the Statues

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

February 18, 2014 11:40 AM CST

Description

Squirrel in a Stare Off With My Cat

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

February 18, 2014 12:30 PM CST

Description

Case of the Strange Squirrel With Two Tails

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Snowy Egret Egretta thula

Observer

kalamurphyking

Date

September 25, 2018 10:14 AM CDT

Description

White Rock lake, tree above pool behind lower spillway steps
The Egret Tree
A popular perching spot at the spillway. Great egrets at the top with a couple of snowy egrets at the bottom.

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