My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Chasing Birds and the Lunar Eclipse

I got up this morning to confirm whether a bird I had seen and photographed last Wednesday was a pectoral sandpiper or a ruff.  I was out scanning the field as soon as I had enough light, which down here is about 7:00A. Another lady from Beaumont, Texas joined me with her camera. We spent two hours photographing a pair of them.  I came in picked out the best of over 200 pictures of  birds that stubbornly refused to come any closer than about  50 yards and preferred to be hiding behind wispy dead grasses. Then I had the TexBird list readers take a look at them.  The experts said I definitely had pectoral sandpipers so the excitement diminished. But they were still lovely birds. Hopefully they will still be here tomorrow so they can be counted on the Bolivar Christmas Count.

Pectoral Sandpiper
Size comparable to a killdeer

Pectoral sandpiper pair

I attended a going away luncheon for one of the volunteer couples and took the opportunity to stop by the library and get the directions for downloading an audio book. I found I have to be on a waiting list for most of them but did find one.  Now I'll have something interesting to listen to when I'm planting grass seed. 

I went to bed early with my clock set for 12:20 A.M. so I could get up and watch the eclipse.  It was beautiful and, as the light from the moon faded, orion was joined by legions of stars.  But we had a partly cloudy sky and finally it closed in altogether, just as the eclipse was at its fullest.

Eclipse is well on the way but partially hidden by clouds

The last view I saw just before the moon was totally eclipsed
 And now it feels like bedtime again, so good morning. I'll try for a few more hours of sleep before getting up and getting ready for company, the Christmas count tomorrow and getting ready to leave for Christmas with my grandson and his family.  Oh yes, I'll also have to do a little work and hope to plant grass seed and work on cutting downed branches to complete a big brush pile.