Monday, April 29, 2013

Zooming Around Uselessly vs. Zooming In with a Purpose

Well, I had hoped to write something interesting for this first post of the second thousand, but it's almost dinnertime, and I haven't written anything yet. My to-do list is long today -- long enough that I find myself vacillating over what's most important and what should be done next, and all that dithering has kept me from making any noticeable headway whatsoever. Levi and Gimpy will start asking for their supper in a matter of minutes, so I'll forget about posting something "meaty" and slap some photos up here. I wanted to show you these anyway.

There's a new kind of bird in our neighborhood this spring, the Mississippi Kite. I've seen several recently but didn't know what they were until one sailed overhead while I was talking with my neighbor over the fence. She knew. (Of course, just to be sure she knew, I Googled it as soon as I got back in the house.)

A day or two later I was outside again when one made several passes over the house, so I hurried back inside and grabbed my camera. By the time I got back out the door, the bird had disappeared. Oh, well. It was a beautiful day, the light was pretty, and the clouds were fluffy, so I took this photo of my garden shed and the neighbors' backyards behind it:

The little tree near the center of the picture above is one of my favorites. You'd be surprised how many times I've photographed that tree over the years, but one can never have too many photos of a favorite subject, so I zoomed in and took another one:

As soon as I took the tree photo, I checked it in the camera's LCD panel. Wait, I thought. What is that dark clump on the right near the very top of the tree?

I zoomed in as far as possible and was excited to take a third shot -- then another and another and another. That "dark clump" was the missing Kite:

Still wanting to get a better look at it, I rushed back inside, uploaded the pictures, and used photo-editing software to enlarge the images further. This, folks, in case you're interested, is a Mississippi Kite:

Pretty, isn't it? A little smaller than the Red-tailed Hawks we were seeing so frequently last year but plenty big enough to catch your attention when it flies. 

Now I'll feed the dogs. Then I'll make a new list so I can get some of today's things done at least by tomorrow.


  1. Pretty birds, but aggressive when they have little ones. During hatching and incubation time, they have terrorized many a golfer here in west Texas by diving at the golfer's head. When one starts diving, his friends join in and before you know it, it is an all out Kite attack. Golf courses have tried many ways to keep the Kites from building their nest's in trees on the course, but I don't think anything has been successful. Just a note of caution in case one starts zooming in on you! :~)

    1. Joy: Oh my, thanks for the warning! I have noticed that they seem to pay close attention when I'm playing ball with the dogs, but all the tall trees are on the other side of my fence, so maybe we won't get close enough to send the Kites into attack mode. I've also noticed crows carrying nest-building materials into the tallest trees back there. I've always thought of baby birds as incredibly sweet, but that was before the idea of baby crows occurred to me.

    2. I laughed when I read your line about the baby crows! I remember your post about them not too long ago. Yep, a lot of crows flying around is a little creepy. Thinking about crows also made me remember a book I read not too long ago. The name of it is "The Art of Racing in the Rain." Believe or not, a dog is telling the story and this dog HATES crows! ;~) I really enjoyed the book. If you haven't already read it, I think it might be something you would enjoy too.

    3. Joy, I read that book a couple of years ago. Good one.


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