Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving Surprise....Utley Texas yard bird

The surprise is not that the species is here, I get them fairly often, the real surprise is that I actually managed to get a photo of one, as normally this bumbling photographer usually can not photograph anything that moves....Happy Thanksgiving All  Yesterday's Couch's Kingbird was calling up a storm just to the south of me this morning as well.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Great Property Bird On The Way To The Mailbox

This Couch's Kingbird was just down the road from me.  I heard it first calling behind a neighbor's house, folks I don't know yet, as I walked the half mile to the mailbox  I could not see it as it was somewhere in their Live Oaks.behind their house..But on the way back I waited it out and it finally appeared from behind the house just long enough for a few distant crumby photos...It was a long way back in there.  This in Utley, Bastrop County, Texas on a cold clear afternoon today. It was calling its "kip" call notes steadily but that was all.  So I stood at my gate up on the road straining to hear it, and was finally just able to.  I am easy...If I can hear anything from my property it goes on the mental list.   These are becoming pretty regular up here.   I hope it actually will decide to visit the many dead snags on my property proper.  It was just over a decade ago that these were almost unheard of in the county.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

My Turf in Utley, Bastrop Co. Texas

Many have asked how I get the birds and animals I get...Well it is rural here for now and all I can really do without showing the exact location of my property is to show you the area on Google Earth.  A wide variety of habitats for all seasons with the Colorado River and a major tributary (Wilbarger Creek) very nearby..  I will say that I live in the northwest quadrant of this image and my property and cabin is there to be seen.  Would be more precise but don't want NSA coming to raid my newly bought Butternut Squash and turn-buckle from the Tractor Supply Store. Increasingly crammed between the Austin Metropolis and  swelling Bastrop, where else do migrants have to pass?   This is part of the remaining gap of about 16-17 miles with little to no light pollution at night and still ample places for diurnal and nocturnal migrants to land and roost  mostly unmolested between those two rapidly growing cities.  Eventually, someday, this gap will close and become just more urban sprawl, though I hope not in my lifetime as I treasure this area.  It is my reason for living here, the reason I moved here and why I have remained here for almost three decades...Almost half my life....Still a very quiet neighborhood

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Chili Pequin ( Capsicum annuum ) time again

Nothing like this native Texan for chili fixings, scrambled eggs, beer "popcorn", stewed meats, or just to flavor anything except maybe lemon pie. Superb flavor...Maybe a little spicy for some.  Grows in semi-shaded areas of south Texas down into the tropics.  A favorite of Native Americans for thousands of years. A perennial that comes back every year and in good locations can grow to five plus feet. I am fortunate to have many, many volunteer plants throughout my property  Very drought hardy.