A novice birder's observation of birds and other natural wildlife with wings ... or maybe not with wings...
Friday, June 22, 2012
More Flycatchers - Willow Flycatcher in Northern Illinois
A Willow Flycatcher, Glacial Park, McHenry Cnty, IL; 6/10/2012.
June should be named "The Month of the Flycatcher" in Northern Illinois, as I have seen and heard all seven Flycatcher species that reside in our area for the summer. All of my posts to this blog last weekend were devoted to Flycatchers. Flycatcher residents that I have seen/heard in the first two weeks of June are: Eastern Phoebe, Eastern Kingbird, Eastern Wood Pewee, Least Flycatcher, Acadian Flycatcher, Great-crested Flycatcher, and Willow Flycatcher (Above). Of the three Flycatchers that have travel through our area to more northern homes, I have seen two of them: Olive-sided Flycatchers and Alder Flycatchers. The only Flycatcher species that I have been unable to locate is the Yellow-bellied Flycatcher.
The same Willow Flycatcher, Glacial park, IL; 6/10/2012.
Eastern Phoebes, Eastern Kingbirds and Great-crested Flycatchers are easily identified by their appearance. But all the others look very much alike and I have to rely on their sounds to be sure of my identification. Luckily each of them have their own unique song which are fairly easy to distinguish. Willow flycatchers (Above) have their unique song which is translated in bird guides and bird recordings as "fitzbew" or "ritzbew." In the Summer, these Flycatchers can be found from coast to coast in the northern half of the U.S. and will travel to Mexico and Central America to spend the Winter.
Hello, I have always been interested in birds, undoubtedly influenced by my mother and grandmother. As a young boy I remember paging through my parents' bird books. Both my Mom and Grandma would identify birds by both their songs and their looks. I enjoy nature and being out in it as often as I am able. Being a teacher helps - as I have much of the summer to do just that. I have done some nature and wildlife photography, but until a few years ago I never thought about photographing birds thinking that it would be too difficult - too small and too flighty. After a few thousand photos, my girlfriend suggested that I open a blog sharing some of the pictures that I have taken and hopefully will be taking in the future.
During the 3 years that have been writing this blog, I have graduated from my first camera, a Sony Digital, to my 2nd, a Canon Rebel T1i, to finally my 3rd and current camera - Canon EOS7D. I started with the standard 18-55mm lens, which I soon found was totally impractical. I then purchased a Canon 55-250mm which I used for quite some time, until I bought a Sigma 150-500mm.and finally sold that one and replaced it with a Sigma 150-600mm, my current birding lens.