Friday, December 2, 2011

James Island County Park: Young Birds of August

         Hot August arrived and I was languishing, wishing for cooler temperatures, and yet making myself move out into the heat to walk for exercise at James Island County Park.  Rewards do occur for those who push themselves out into the sweltering heat -- and my reward was the young birds of August!  For the most part, the adult male Painted Buntings had long stopped singing.  And yet, occasionally, you can hear them slip into song, before they spy you and then slip into cover.  Instead of  the bright and audacious birds of late Spring and early Summer, these males were reclusive and molting.  But they were still keeping watch over their bolder, perkier fledglings, as the youngsters fed in the tall grasses. 

Young Painted Bunting -- James Island County Park -- August 3, 2011

Young Painted Buntings -- James Island County Park -- August 3, 2011

Also, along the perimeter trail that runs through the scrub oak and pines alongside the marsh of the Stono River, the cheery, young Carolina Chickadees enthusiastically chattered, perched, and chased each other across the path from tree to tree right in front of me.

Carolina Chickadee -- James Island County Park -- August 2011

And finally, best of all, bright and curious young Prairie Warblers, a favorite of mine, respond to phishing and pop up as though to say hello.

Juvenile Prairie Warbler -- James Island County Park -- August 3, 2011
Juvenile Prairie Warbler -- James Island County Park -- August 3, 2011
What a great treat!  And very much worth the sweat factor required to be there in the moment!  But, I can also say that as the mid-morning temperatures continued to rise, the moment was expiring as was I!  And so I contentedly beat a quick path back home to shower off the sweat and then to upload the photos of these perky youngsters.

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