Saturday, March 15, 2014

Fun Times at Franklin Mountain

We took a quick trip out to west Texas (El Paso area) a little over a week ago. I went back to the same parks as last year, including Franklin Mountain State Park. This park has some great hiking trails (the mountain bike trails looked like a blast too). I spent some time observing birds from the bird blind they have set up near a nature trail. They have a water source, which attracts a lot of birds and feeders, which attract even more birds and  even a few critters.

It's always fun to bird away from your regular area and catch up with different species. The Curve-billed Thrasher was definitely one of my favorites. Check out that bill!

White-winged Doves aren't too exciting, but they are pretty.

I saw my first Lesser Goldfinch, a species not found in the sunshine state.

I wish all sparrows were as easy to identify as the Black-throated Sparrow! There were hundreds of sparrows at Hueco Tanks this year, some of which I wasn't too sure about.

This was also my first sighting of a Spotted Towhee. This was the most skittish species of all that were visiting the waterhole. It made a brief appearance for a quick, refreshing drink.

A cute little Texas Antelope Squirrel!

I have a good little helper who likes carrying my camera bag (while I carry the camera). He is funny...when he spots a bird on a hike, he usually tells me "Mom, there's one of your birds".

He also celebrated another birthday...Happy 4th to my mini-birder! Time goes by way too fast!


  1. he's getting SO big! what a cutie. loved all your bird shots! several not seen in my east side of texas.

  2. Another lovely set of shots Tammy, the light looks so nice there and no doubt excellent for photography.

  3. The Thrasher is exciting. I see the Lesser Goldfinch being posted by bloggers from Spain too. You've been able to get a lot of variety there. You have a beautiful boy.

  4. A great set of photos Tammy, How many Thrashers are there in the US ?, And happy birthday to the mini birder, He really is getting taller.
    All the best Gordon.

    1. Hi Gordon, thank you for your compliments! I believe there are 8 species of thrashers in the US. The Brown Thrasher is the only one the can be found in Florida; all the rest are in the west/southwest.

  5. Awesome birds, I love the Curve-billed Thrasher! Great post. Have a happy weekend!

    1. Thank you for stopping by, Eileen! I hope you have a happy weekend too!

  6. Beautiful pictures. And a very handsome helper, you are blessed. Happy Birthday to your mini birder.

  7. Hi Tammy !
    Happy birthday to the Minibirder !
    You have got some good Texas Pictures, hard light but great contrast and details in all of them. Have a nice week both of you !

  8. Wow... amazing photos!!!!
    Best regards from Poland :-)

  9. Hola Tammy, una magnifica serie de aves algunas muy curiosas y desconocidas para mi,Felicidades por el cuarto aniversario de tu pequeño ayudante.Un fuerte abrazo amiga

  10. Hello Tammy,
    What a fantastic shots you show again.
    Great all these birds. The first is very special with his hooked beak. Wonderful!!
    Nice shots of your little helper, so cute!!

    Best regards,

  11. Happy birthday to your little birder! In just a few years he may be carrying the camera! Great shots Tammy. You got the eyes in the birds just perfect.

  12. Beautiful birds you shot, and a bit late but, happy birdsday to your son.

  13. Jeez Tammy,

    again what a wonderful blog with a variation of the most beautiful birds. Lovely crisp and bright and beautiful colors and details in the plumage. my compliments
    Dear greetings, Helma

  14. Como siempre un trabajo sensacional.
    Enhorabuena Tammy.
    Un saludo desde Extremadura

  15. Fabulous photos as usual, I love seeing birds I don't get to see myself, and am a bit jealous! ;) Your son's adorable! How nice to have a helper and birder-in-training!

  16. Very nice stuff from southwest Texas, Tammy! We're accustomed to your superb photography and it's wonderful to see it even works on unfamiliar species!

    That's quite an assistant you have, there!

    We're looking forward to visiting Texas later this year. Hope we find a few birds.

  17. How great to to such a lovely bird-helper to accompany you in your outings!
    I bet you carry the camera!! LOL!
    Again a superb series of photos and species I discover through your lens!
    The blue patch around the dove's eye is gorgeous!
    Keep well Tammy!

  18. Your wee little 'birder' is adorable! The backpack is almost bigger than him - LOL!
    xo Catherine

  19. A great series of shots, especially liked all the exciting birds. Otherwise, I think all the pictures were great to look at!


  20. Great shots Tammy. Helpers are nice, especially when they get big enough to carry a full camera bag!

  21. Hi Tammy!!!.. has made ​​a stop in your blog .. Beautiful pictures as always these beautiful birds .. Hope to see you soon .. Regards ..

  22. I haven't ventured out El Paso way, yet. I can see I need to keep it on my list of places to go. It would be a lot more fun if I had a darling birding companion like you do!! What a cutie. Sure have missed your posts! I'm settled for the summer and back to blogging a little more regularly.

  23. Hi Tammy, How's things ? I see like me you haven't posted in a while, I don't know when I'll get back to it, I hope you and the familly are well and happy, and the mimi birder is ok too.
    All the best, and take care Gordon.

  24. Tammy how exciting, I hope you have safe journy's and enjoy your trip/adventure. North Wales is nice but the Lakes in Cumbria is better, especially the Borrowdale valley, where I lived for 8 years.
    Do let me know how you get on, All the best, Gordon.

  25. Lovely series of photos and handsome young man. Doesn't get much better! :)

  26. Beautiful! The colors in your photos are spectacular. And happy birthday to the mini-birder...way to start him off right!

  27. It's great to see your beautiful subjects again Tammy. Been out of touch for a few months. I think my favorite was the Thrasher, the Dove and the Lesser Goldfinch, aw shoot they were all pretty awesome.

  28. Beautiful captures as always, Tammy.
    Happy Birthday to your not so little birder :) and hugs to you both.

  29. Preciosas fotografías y fantástico blog, me hago seguidor. Saludos cordiales desde España.

  30. what! I just finished commenting on another post and then went to 'follow'...and I had already 'followed'...but you aren't showing up in my reader feed. I will now fix that! ...By the way, live in Tampa, but I'm from El Paso originally. The coincidences collide.

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