Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Cinnamon Surprise

The recent mild temperatures in the Midwest has brought many a smile to winter-weary Chicagoans. I was fortunate to spend a couple of beautiful days visiting a few of my favorite birding spots. Though I mostly viewed the common winter visitors (White-breasted Nuthatches, Black-capped Chickadees, Red-bellied and Downy Woodpeckers), I was in for quite a surprise at North Pond in Lincoln Park. After making the rounds of the pond, a gentleman approached me and excitingly inquired if I had seen the red duck. I had seen many Lesser Scaup, Mallards, Canada Geese and 3 Greylag Geese, but no red duck. I was intrigued. He kindly offered to show me the red feathered beauty and off we trod to an area where there was a large congregation of Canada Geese. There, swimming at a very rapid pace and skimming the water with its long bill was a most stunning creature, a Cinnamon Teal. Its rich ruddy hues, brilliant red eye and lovely iridescent blue and green wing feathers created quite the breathtaking sight. We both observed the little busy teal, captivated by its beauty.

Upon further research, I discovered that Cinnamon Teals are most commonly found in marshes and ponds of western North and South America. Its migration route does not include the Midwest. Where did this lovely dabbling duck come from?

This blog features many of the beautiful sightings seen on a few March outings.


A most unique pond visitor ~ Cinnamon Teal


A striking Red-headed Woodpecker excavates a deep cavity


An attractive Mallard pair wade in North Pond


A common doe-eyed winter visitor ~ Tufted Titmouse


Putting on quite the display for a fellow White-breasted Nuthatch


A Ring-billed Seagull admires its reflection from the edge of the ice


The sightly profile of a Red-bellied Woodpecker


Glorious Sandhill Cranes in flight


On this day, I was fortunate to view hundreds of migrating Sandhill Cranes ~ I heard their raucous trumpeting calls the entire 2 1/2 hours I spent birdwatching ~ I observed smaller groups of cranes at various altitudes come together and form one massive, incredible flock



The magnificent colors of a male Wood Duck


A Lesser Scaup delights in the sunny day


Exquisite feathers ~ Cinnamon Teal


Cinnamon beauty


One last look at the stunning Cinnamon Teal

43 comments:

Cynthia White said...

Wow, absolutely stunning beauty!

forgetmenot said...

Julie, Thanks for your lovely comments--so glad you are a "follower". Do you take "amazing" photos, or what!!!!!! These are wonderful. I just had a pair of doves "take over" an old nest that robins had used the year before. It is right outside my kitchen window so I am about 4 feet away--I am so excited to have them as neighbors and watch all that goes on for the next few weeks. Mickie :)

Kah-Wai Lin said...

Nice series of pictures!

Jen said...

Gorgeous photos... The Cinnamon Teal is one of my all-time favorites! Love that photo of the gull with his reflection!

Cindi said...

WOW! Awesome photos Julie!

Beverly said...

Simply exquisite images!!!! Love the cinnamon teal duck!

PoetessWug said...

I love all of your bird photos...always! But I must say...the Cinnamon Teal has sky-rocketed to the top of the list! :-) I can see why the gentleman was so excited!

Robin said...

Stunning images! Thanks for sharing!

Herman versteeg said...

Hoi Jullie
wat een geweldige foto's heb je geplaatst.
erg mooi.
groetjes Herman.

JRandSue said...

Fantastic collection Julie,we hope to see a large number of these Birds,when we go to Canada in May.
Love the Cinnamon Teal,but, my favouriye has to be the Wood Duck.
Superb Photography.
John.

Weekend Cowgirl said...

Your photos are amazing and I really enjoy seeing all the birds..

RVDaalen said...

Wonderful captures of serval birds, really beautiful to watch.

Greetz from Holland,

Remco

Daniel said...

Wow! I don't know what other metaphor to use. Do you give private lessons?

Daniel

Explore. Dream. Discover.
http://daniels-view.blogspot.com/
--

Frances said...

What's your camera?

BirdGalAlcatraz said...

Ohmigosh, Julie, how stunning! All the photos are gorgeous. I love the Cinnamon Teal and all the exquisite captures you got of this magnificent dabbling duck. The male Wood Duck is also stunning - no other duck is quite as showy. And I love the White-breasted Nuthatch with his outstretched wings - what a great capture. Thanks for sharing!

dAwN said...

Gorgeous!Awesome...and woweee! :) love them ALL.

capturethesoul said...

Gorgeous, Gorgeous, Gorgeous post!! I love taking my time to savor each image...the seagull looking at his reflection is a WOWSER!! When are you going to make your coffee table book??

Marco Alpha said...

Hello Julie,
Lovely pictures of these different birds. They are really beautiful. I like the picture with the woodpecker very much, it has wonderful colours and the picture of the Tufted Titmouse is amazing.
Thanks for all your true comments on my blogs!!

Greetings, Marco

dreamfalcon said...

I'm always fascinated by your stunning, colorful and super in-focused photos - awesome!
That Cinnamon Teal is a true beauty.

Debbie Miller @HooootOwl said...

Beautiful Julie, always enjoy your posts and photos!

cindyzlogic said...

Julie, your photography is just outstanding!! Super grand~glorious captures!!

May I use your Titmouse photo as a reference for a sketch in my Nature Sketchbook?

CinLynn Boutique said...

Stunning creature!! WOW!! That is awesome! Thanks for sharing it with us!

Kathiesbirds said...

I thought the nuthatch was my favorite photo until I saw the wood duck! All wonderful! I had seen the cinnamon teal on another Chicago blog as well. How nice that you got to see it also! Great Captures all! I love sandhill cranes! Their voice is music to my ears!

greggard said...

Beautiful photographs Julie!
Cinnamon Teal, Red-headed Woodpecker and migrating Sandhill Cranes are my favorite :)

Chris Petrak said...

Julie - Your photos are stunning - sorry I haven't kept more up-to-date. You have been very gracious with your comments on my blog - when I look at the quality of your photos, I then appreciate you feedback all the more. Thanks. Chris

Frank said...

Whow Julie, another stunning photo series but the Cinnamon Teal is definitely the star. FAB.

Rose Lefebvre said...

Love your photographs. Wht kind of camera do you use? I want to buy one and am getting suggestions.
poetrose24@comcast.net

SLH said...

Absolutely stunning shots! I love each and every one - epecially the Cinnamon Teals!

John's Island said...

Hi Julie, This is an absolutely wonderful post. I could sit here and write about each one of the photos ... they are all great. I love the Cinnamon Teal. Actually, I don't think I have seen one before but I will be on the lookout now and appreciate your giving me the introduction. Your photography is so inspiring. It makes me want to get out there and start taking pictures right now. :-) This is funny ... I went out to one of our nature spots about a week ago and got some shots of mallards that I thought were pretty good. I will post on my blog soon. The funny part is I only got one or two good shots where you give us a whole treasure trove here. Your blog is awesome! Thank you so much for sharing, your Seattle follower, John

Julie G. said...

A very gracious thank you to all! Your warm, kind, positive comments mean so much to me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your generosity.

Robin Robinson said...

AWESOME, AWESOME shots, Julie! WOW! This is a fabulous post with magnificient photos.

Bill S. said...

You create the most beautiful pictures of birds that I see. This is a super post. Love it.

Debbie said...

so happy i found your blog, your pictures are amazing...amazing...amazing with such vivid color. really beautiful. bookmarked and will def be back!!! xo

texwisgirl said...

Oh my!!! Debbie (comment above) sent me the link to your site and now I'm hooked too!!! LOVE your bird shots! L-O-V-E!!!

Larry said...

Fantastic photos of all the birds Julie! The Cinnamon Teal is a real find and you showed us all his attributes so well. That last front on shot is just super.

I had to smile at the White-breasted Nuthatch shot you captured. These little balls of energy are permanent residents in my yard and I have never seen that pose before anywhere. Awesome.

I can only imagine how impressive the flock of Sandhill Cranes must have been. I don't know if you and your readers are aware of the proposal to hunt these incredible birds in the eastern U.S. but please check this post by Julie Zickefoose and this post by Vickie Henderson and write letters to oppose the insanity.

I love your blog and I'm glad I followed one of your comments on Dawn's blog to find you.

Patricia/Trisketta said...

Julie: I can only gaze in awe at your stunning images. Now I must pick my jaw off the floor;D Splendid captures!

BumbleVee said...

your photos are beautiful..... and the last one of the Cinnamon guy is very cute......

Harold Stiver said...

Wonderful series of images. My favorites are the Cinnamon Teal, terrific!!

Bob Pelkey said...

Exceptional work. The gull was certainly not looking at its reflection.

Ricardo Torres said...

Oh my God This post are really wonderful like others Congratulations from Spain

John's Island said...

Hi Julie, Just stopped by to check on your blog. Although I knew it wasn't a new post, just wanted to see it again ... your photos are always worth viewing more than once! Have a great day, John

Amin said...

What a wonderful blog!
caucasusgeography.blogspot.com

Robin Robinson said...

Stunning series of images. LOVE the Cinnamon teal, as I've never seen one and yours are photos to aspire to. And, the nuthatch with wings spread is just too sweet. It's great to see a shot that isn't just the bird on a branch. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but great to see some action!