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Posts Tagged ‘Carolina Wren’

On some winter days it is tough to find birds to photograph—all of the birds that I do manage to see are either far away or hidden. On one of those kind of days last week, I was thrilled to spot this cute little Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) that was only half-hidden in a distant tree. My efforts were aided by the fact that Carolina Wrens are loud singers, especially considering their diminutive size, which allowed me to hear this bird well before I actually saw it.

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Carolina Wrens (Thryothorus ludovicianus) are usually active very close to the ground in the undergrowth. I was therefore quite surprised when one recently flew into a tree at almost eye level as I sought to track a different bird. The minimum focusing distance for my telephoto lens is almost 9 feet (270 cm) and although this little bird seemed to be really close, it was apparently a little beyond that distance.

I managed to quickly focus on the wren and capture this shot before it flew away. It is always cool when I am able to be at eye level with a bird, because I think that it tends to show the personality of a bird more than a shot from a lower or higher angle.

 

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Most of the time when I see or hear Carolina Wrens (Thryothorus ludovicianus), they are hidden in the undergrowth. I was thrilled therefore last Monday to be able to capture an image of this one in the open at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

I generally think of Carolina Wrens as cheerful, energetic little birds and I like the way that this simple shot captures a bit of that personality.

 

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I love the sweet sounds of a Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus), like this little beauty that I spotted on Wednesday at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge.  Most of the times when I see a Carolina Wren, it is hopping about in the underbrush, but sometimes when they are going to sing, they choose a higher, more visible perch.

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Carolina Wrens (Thryothorus ludovicianus) are small birds that often remain hidden, but their loud songs let you know when they are near. I caught a glimpse of this one from an unusual angle last week at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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This week I visited the bird banding station at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge. This is a very small operation, run almost entirely by volunteers, that bands mostly smaller songbirds.

While I was there, they captured a Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) and a Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum). Both birds were weighed, measured, and examined. The tiny Carolina Wren already had a band from a previous year and the much larger Thrasher got a band. The bands come in all sizes—it was amazing to see the range of sizes.

When it was time to release the wren, one of the volunteers handed her over to me. It was such an amazing feeling to hold the little bird in my hand and then to slowly release my grip and feel the tiny points of her little feet press down on my palm as she took to the air.

Click this link For more info on the banding station including hours of operation.

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

Brown Thrasher

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

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Sometimes when a bird fluffs up its feathers, its appearance changes enough that identification becomes more difficult than usual. That was certainly the case with this little Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) that I spotted on New Year’s Day at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The head and the tail looked normal for a Carolina Wren, but I had never before seen spots on the back of one.

Once again, experts in a Facebook forum came to my rescue and reassured me that this was normal behavior for a Carolina Wren. When they fluff up their feathers to roost at night, the spots are visible too, although in this case I suspect that the wren was merely trying to retain body heat in the bitter cold weather that we have been experiencing the last couple of weeks.

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I had hopes of capturing lots of images of birds perched on snow-flocked branches at Huntley Meadows Park  yesterday morning, but this happy little Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) was the only bird that cooperated. About an inch of light fluffy snow had fallen overnight and covered the trees and cars, but the streets were totally clear—it was what some local meteorologists like to call “conversation snow.” Traffic snarls easily in Northern Virginia, but fortunately this dusting of snow did not seem to create any serious problems on the road.

So far this winter, snow has been uncommon here, but I am sure we will be blasted before long and, conditions permitting, I’ll be out again trying to capture the snowy images that I have in my mind.

Carolina Wren

 

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Do you pay any attention to the nondescript little birds pecking about in the underbrush? Do you even notice them?

I love trying to capture images of impressive, powerful hawk, owls, and eagles. There is no denying their beauty. However, I’ll also stop and try to get a glimpse of the small birds too, for I have learned that they have a special beauty all their own.

I am especially happy when I can get an unobstructed view of one of them, like this Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) that I spotted yesterday at my local marshland park.

The beautiful little wren seems full of personality and exudes a positive, happy attitude.

Don’t let that beauty go unnoticed.

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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“Joy to the World, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing…”

In this case, “nature” is a Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) that I photographed one recent morning, singing with all of its might.

joy_blog

On Christmas Day, many of us recall the message of the angels, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” Yet sometimes I feel like Henry Wadsworth Longfellow must have felt when he wrote the words, “And in despair I bowed my head. “There is no peace on earth,” I said. “For hate is strong and mocks the song of peace on earth, goodwill to men.”

My prayer this Christmas Day, is that we will all be encouraged and blessed and filled with love for one another. Longfellow did not conclude his poem, “Christmas Bells” in despair, but instead ended with these words:

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead; nor doth he sleep!
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Merry Christmas to all of you.

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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Peering through my telephoto lens at this tiny bird, I couldn’t help but smile—its energetic personality, round body, and tiny wings and tail were cartoon-like.  It looked like a wren, but it certainly didn’t resemble the Carolina Wrens that I am used to seeing.

I did a little research and have concluded that this is probably a Winter Wren (Troglodytes hiemalis). According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, these little birds are “incomparably energetic in voice” and per unit weight deliver their songs with ten times more power than a crowing rooster. I can only imagine groups of scientists with tiny scales and microphones conducting the research to back up that statement.

I noted on the statistics page of my blog that this will be posting number 1,000. I never imagined how much I would come to enjoy the process of blogging when I started this blog on July 7, 2012 with a photo of a Blue Dasher dragonfly. The support and encouragement from innumerable readers has helped to sustain me on my journey into photography. Thanks to all of you.

The journey continues.

winter_wren2_blogwinter_wren1_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Back home from a week overseas in Vienna, I felt the need to reconnect with nature and headed off to the marsh at Huntley Meadows Park early this morning. The weather was cold and gray, but I was able to get some shots of birds, like this Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus), surveying the frozen pond from an overhanging branch.

It’s nice to be home.

wren_dec_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Why was this wren perching on the nesting box just prior to entering it? It’s not nesting season, is it? Was it seeking shelter on a cool, windy day? Were there insects inside to eat?

As I noted yesterday, bird activity was low on Monday—we didn’t even have any Canada geese or ducks passing through. I initially noticed this small bird, which I think is a Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus), when it was checking out the underside of this nesting box. The box itself is pretty big and was placed there, I believe, for ducks to use. Eventually the wren perched on the edge of the entrance and peered inside and then looked all around before going inside.

wren_box_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Nowadays when I see a little brown bird, my first thought is that it’s probably some kind of sparrow. In this case, however, the beak seemed to be too long to be a sparrow, so I had to so some research. I’m pretty sure this pretty little bird is a Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus). In addition to the beak, I was able to use the white eye stripe and uplifted tail as identification features.

In addition to the internet, I now have my first hardcopy identification guide, Peterson Field Guide to Birds of North America, a thank-you gift from friends for catsitting. I suspect that this may turn out to be the first of a series of guides that I’ll end up acquiring.

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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