Mission Statement

Bearing Witness to Local Natural History-- from the wildness of Indiana

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

All Want Water

It has been eventful lately. We are coming into August-- we are in an extreme drought and there are not many water sources available for wildlife. I usually have Great Egrets migrate through at and around my property due to the ponds. Within the last week though, the largest number of egrets has gathered. Twenty Great Egrets as well as 20 Great Blue Herons (a rather high number also but not a record).

Nine of Twenty Great Egrets                          ©Joni L. James

Yesterday, I discovered a beautiful moth fluttering outside of the local Subway restaurant. I collected it in a cup and brought it home to photograph it. During the moth's fluttering it revealed the gorgeous reddish-pink hind-wings with black bands. I hoped it would extend its wings so I could capture the rich color. It did not. Below is one of the photos-- the only one that allows a peek within. As it grew dark, this nocturnal beauty, called The Sweetheart (Catocala amatrix)  flew off.

The Sweetheart (Catocala amatrix)                  ©Joni L. James

This evening a large flock of juvenile Eastern Bluebirds flew to the bird bath and battled to drink and bathe. An adult showed up also. There were seven in all and interestingly, a Carolina Chickadee and female House Finch all decided to come to the ole swimmin' hole at the same time. The bluebirds dominated the water source. The quality of the photos are not the best since I was shooting through a window inside the house.

Four Juvenile Eastern Bluebirds and a Female House Finch
©Joni L. James

While the bird bath was full, several were waiting their turn.

Waiting                                                            ©Joni L. James

Then there was dominance . . . hierarchy . . . bullies in the bird bath.

Bird Bath Bullies                                                  ©Joni L. James

Everyone wants refreshing water . . . especially during a drought.

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