Saturday, May 14, 2016

Oklahoma's First Summer Birds Are Coming In


                                                                    Brown Thrasher


                                                                  Carolina Chickadee


                                                                     Eastern Phoebe


                                                                   Mourning Dove


                                                               Female Orchard Oriole
                                                                      1st Summer


                                                            Three-toed Box Turtle


These shots are a couple of days old.  The third wave of migratory birds is coming in, the
birds that were born last year.  They get the secondary territory, which goes in a general pecking order.  The top quality adult males, which are usually the oldest, come in from Central and South America first.  Most of them choose last year's territory if it provided what was needed last year.  A couple of weeks later, most of the adult females come into the area, and choose a mate, based on natural selection, as well as a choice territory.  Then last year's first year birds arrive to get what is left over.  The female Orchard Oriole pictured above is seeking a mate right now.  She was with another
female yesterday.

Oklahoma has two indigenous box turtles.  I have photographed both of them.  Besides the Three-
toed Box Turtle, we are also home to the Ornate Box Turtle.  There are also several other water
turtles, like the Red-eared Slider, the Snapping Turtle, and more that I'll try to locate.

Migration is still going strong, and once we get past this cold snap and the upcoming rain, we'll
see more of them.