Yesterday morning was a beautiful morning in our yard, but most exciting was the presence of at least three Golden-crowned Kinglets, high in the pecan tree. I don't think I'd ever seen any in my yard. Have you ever tried to photograph kinglets? They never stop moving. I snapped away, mostly getting pictures of browning pecan leaves. I didn't think I'd caught a single one, except for a nondescript belly shot, but I was surprised to see later that I'd actually gotten one in flight.
But I couldn't stay around. I'd planned a short trip to just north of Houston (about 4 hours away) to try to get photos of Red-cockaded Woodpeckers to use to paint from. I took our dog Shar along for company and arrived at W.G. Jones State Forest at about 3:30. I heard and saw numerous Brown-headed Nuthatches and Pine Warblers, and saw a couple of Downy Woodpeckers, a gorgeous Pileated Woodpecker, and a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker before 4:45, when all of a sudden the Red-cockaded Woodpeckers arrived, squeaking busily and then quickly diving into holes in the pine trees. You had to be quick to get a picture, but I got a few somewhat fuzzy ones. I thought all the pictures were of single birds, but imagine my surprise when a couple of the pictures showed two of the sneaky birds. Although better pictures would have been nice, I decided not to stay around overnight - my home sounded much better than finding a motel, and so I returned home last night. Back to work now, after a quick trip into the car dealer to replace a tail-light that a kind policeman last night pointed out to me was dead.