This blog originates on the banks of the Atchafalaya River, in Louisiana. It proposes to share the things that happen on and by the river as the seasons progress. As the river changes from quiet, warm, slow flow to rises of eighteen feet or more, there are changes in the lives of the birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles that use the river. And the mood of the river changes with the seasons. I propose to note and comment on these things.

My Photo
Location: Butte La Rose, Louisiana, United States

I transitioned a few years ago from a career as a water-pollution control biologist. I want to do this blog to stay in touch with a world outside my everyday surroundings, whatever they may be. I like open-minded company and the discussion of ideas. Photo by Brad Moon.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Friendly Hummers

How many can you count in this picture (click on it). Hint, I get between 20 and 25. Just can’t get enough of the amiability of these hummingbirds! Every once in a while you see one zoom after another one, but by and large they don’t bother each other. It probably won’t be like this when they thin out, but for now they don’t mind communal dining. The feeders are a foot outside my office window. It is a double pane window and sometimes the flash gets caught in the glass. In the picture below you can see two and even three birds using the same hole to feed from at the same time.

This morning there was a spotted sandpiper (full of spots now) resting on a log out in the river. Seemed strange to see one not constantly moving and bobbing the tail.

I am intrigued by a guy in the Corpus Christi area who is able to use radar (and similar) technology to see flocks of birds leaving Yucatan and central Mexico for their flight over the Gulf of Mexico. By watching them and knowing what the weather conditions are along the Gulf coast, he can predict when there will be a “fall out” of migrating birds at the coastline. He is announcing this to people who are interested in time for them to get to the coast and see these migrating species and observe the phenomenon. What a remarkable use of meteorological technology.

Note the ghost coming in at the upper left. It has landing gear and rudder down, and flaps up.

The frogs were not as active as you might think after the rain last night. There was a chorus of chorus frogs in the barpit at the levee and a few gray treefrogs too, but not the huge response you might expect. Maybe this weekend.

The river is still about 6.5 on the Butte La Rose gauge, and the north wind will push a little more water out. The Mississippi and Ohio are not set to produce any more rises for us at this time.

Rise and Shine, Jim


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