Young Skimmers

Wednesday, September 30, 2020,

These are a pair of pics of juvenile Black Skimmers that I took on the south shore recently. The bird in the top photo is begging for food and actively harassing its parents. Both birds are nearly the size of the adults. Normally, at this point in the season, these youngsters would be much more self sufficient but Tropical Storm Isaias wiped out a bunch of the Skimmer nests and even chicks so many of the Skimmers were forced to re-nest. While this speaks volumes of the dedication of Skimmer parents and the persistence of Mother Nature, these newer chicks face a much tougher immediate future than their brethren who were hatched earlier in the season. I wish them all well.  JK.



A Hummingbird in Huntington

Tuesday, September 29, 2020,

This is my first Hummingbird post of the season and it’s very likely my last. It’s nearly the end of Hummingbird season. I’ve seen Hummingbirds in a few places but I just haven’t been able to get any decent photos. I had seen them at Frank Melville in Setauket and at the Marine Nature Study Area in Oceanside but I never had any luck. Last week, a friend of mine told me about a place in Huntington called Manor Farm. They have a sunflower maze and lots and lots of Trumpet Vines, which are these pretty flowers you see here. Word is that Hummingbirds love them. It certainly looks like they do.  JK.



Lesser Black-backed Gull

Monday, September 28, 2020,

This is a new bird to me. I had seen it at the shore’s edge and just assumed it was another Great Black-backed Gull. I never expect to see unusual birds. However, when I saw it trying to steal food from an Oystercatcher, I had to give it a second look. While this bird is larger than an Oystercatcher, the difference is not huge. On the other hand, a Great Black-backed Gull is nearly twice the size of my beloved Oystercatchers. Guessing, and hoping , that I had something new, I decided to take a couple pics of it. When I got home and compared my photos to online resources, I was pleased to confirm my hunch. Oh, and by the way, the Oystercatcher kept its meal. That would have been unlikely with a Great Black-backed Gull, who are notorious bullies. JK.


Bullfrog Portraits

Friday, September 25, 2020,

This is a pair of Bullfrog portraits that I took at Frank Melville Park in Setauket. These are two different frogs. They were hanging out within eight inches of each other, so it made for some easy shooting. The second frog is about twenty percent larger than the frog above but because of the way I’ve cropped these photos, it may be difficult to tell. Not that it matters to the frogs. They’re both green, they’re both ensconced in Duckweed, and neither is dating Miss Piggy. Wins all around. JK.




Looking Back

Thursday, September 24, 2020,

This is a juvenile Oystercatcher looking back at me as I was photographing it at Point Lookout Beach. I don’t know that this will be the last juvenile Oystercatcher that I photograph this year, but these pics do make for a decent bookend for what has been a pretty good year for Oystercatchers here on Long Island. This particular bird was banded, as you can see in the photo below, so I hope that I can maybe photograph it next year or, at the very least, follow it’s exploits in the coming years. I wish you well, my young one, and I truly hope that our paths cross again.  JK.