Thursday is finally here. I get to really go out and look for and see birds on Jekyll. Don’t get me wrong I watch birds everyday. This week the Tufted Titmice have fledged two young. They were back and forth to the feeder with the little “darlings” in toe several times a day. The Blue Jays are in and out of the bird drip all day. The Great Crested Flycatchers are whipping around in the tops of the trees. At several stops around as I attend planning meetings for the Georgia Colonial Coast Birding & Nature Festival as well as promoting birding for our coast I am hearing Orchard Orioles. What a wonder song!
With the full moon our tides are very high and the wading birds are feasting on trapped fish. I met Janet and her sister Sue. Sue is a photographer birder so the first stop is the pond under the Sidney Lanier Bridge. It is easy to watch the huge concentration of egrets, herons, and storks from Gisco Marine Drive. The Roseate Spoonbill is the first bird the scope lands on talk about luck. There are several lingering immature birds, dowitchers, Semipalmated Plover and Semipalmated Sandpipers. As we peruse the edges of the pond I spot a pair of Black-necked Stilts. I move the van in a better position to watch these birds closer and we notices the terns flying over the pond. Most of the terns are Least Terns but there are two Gulled-billed Terns wheeling around over the surface of the pond as well. What I am learning about myself is that terns fascinate me. I am not sure if it the way the fly or that they have that classic sleek look but it is a trill to see them. Gull-billed Terns are no exception. Since we have wide expanses of marsh for these marsh birds to spread out finding a place to watch them up close is significant. They appear to be mostly white and pale gray except for that sleek black cap and blunt black bill. “Just stunning!” is all I can think to say.
Pulling us away is all I can do for we have some many other places to visit we head back toward Jekyll. As we drive it become clear that we need to stop at a little roost for the storks and spoonbills.
Janet had had a little accident early in the week so she decided to stay with the van as we creep into the roost area. It was a rewarding stop Sue and I snapped away as seventeen Roseate Spoonbills loafed on a skeleton of a tree. When we head back to the van, Janet is resting comfortably having seen some of the spoonbills fly around the area.
Hoping to add Wilson’s Plovers to the day’s experience I decide to walk the south end from St. Andrews Picnic area. This pair of plovers were elusive and today was no exception but we add the ever courting Royal Terns to our list as well as late Ruddy Turnstones.
To finish the morning of course we go by the Amphitheater. The Wood Storks are the stars of the shows. One good sighting was the Anhingas. There were two females sitting tight on nest. Let’s hope that they will raise a few young. There is nothing so fascinating than Anhinga chick. Stay tuned.
With Georgia birdlife on my mind-good birding