Saturday, October 14, 2017
RTES Young Birder's Club Inaugural Adventure
We set off on the path with our binoculars, camera, and my mom had the spotting scope. At the starting point we saw an immature House Sparrow with downy feathers. After that we heard 20 to 40 Rose-Ringed Parakeets squawking from the tall Palm Trees. The other kids were not sure what they were so I helped them identify the Parakeets. Most people do not realize that these birds are actually invasive here because someone let go of their pet Parakeets. Now there are hundreds.
After almost an hour of walking my mom and I were getting nervous that there was not going to be anything too exciting for the group to spot. Mom was desperately scanning the dunes for movement, then she saw something. We set up the scope and my mom exclaimed "Isabelline Wheatear." As we continued to scan we noticed there were actually four of them. Our theory is that there were two parents and two juveniles, but we could not distinguish with certainty, which ones were juveniles. There was one male who was noticeably brighter than the rest. The other kids had never seen a Wheatear before, so it was fun to give them a chance to look through the scope at them!
At the end of the trip, we happened to spot an Indian Silver-bill that appeared to be gathering nesting materials from the ground. He was darting from the sand to the top of a small Palm Tree and back again. The entire trip was only an hour, but several of the other kids were already tired at the end so it was good we only went for that long. There were several kids who want to go again, with one of them asking "can we do this every weekend?" Probably not, but I do look forward to leading another RTES Young Birder's Club outing, perhaps to the far north end of camp to "Boy Scout Beach" to try to spot nesting Crested Larks.
As always, you can see my blog and other Eco-adventures at www.birdsandturtles.com