Saturday, April 3, 2010

A little adventure

I've been wanting to get away for a while now, so today I took off for a little adventure at the San Luis Wildlife Refuge , a couple hours from where I live.
The wildlife refuge is one of the best places I've ever found to go birding, but I've only been there in the winter, not in the spring. I tried not to get my hopes up about the birds I would see because it's much more enjoyable not to have any expectations, to just see what you see.

I knew the refuge would be very green and the wildflowers would be in bloom, and wasn't disappointed.

But there was one thing that surprised me ...
The refuge was empty. I had the entire place to myself. Well, okay, I did see a couple birders walking down the road, and one couple standing by their car taking pictures of an egret. But I was there for hours, and the refuge is huge! Why people weren't flocking to such a beautiful place is beyond me.

I drove through miles and miles of gorgeous grassland.

There were Great Egrets everywhere!

They are so beautiful in flight.

I lost count of the number of Great Blue Herons I saw. They are one of my top ten favorite birds, and today I decided if I were a bird, I'd be a Great Blue Heron. It was difficult getting a picture of one because they flew away the moment I came in to view, except for this one that let me get a snapshot of his head. I suspect he thought he was completely camouflaged.

On the drive to and from the refuge I listened to Committed , the new book by Elizabeth Gilbert of Eat, Pray, Love. I didn't think I would like it, but it's really good.

It was a wonderful day, and I loved having such a beautiful place almost all to myself. In addition to egrets, I saw lots of swallows, California Quail and another one of my favorite birds, Red-winged Blackbirds . I love hearing the sound of their call because it signifies that spring is here.

Hope you have a happy Easter.


Theresa said...

Looks like we were both enjoying nature yesterday:) Love all of those beautiful pictures my friend! Have a blessed Easter Sunday! Hugs from Georgia!

Linda said...

Happy Easter Stacy!
What a lovely place to visit, your photos are wonderful:)

Erin Wallace said...

I love red wing blackbrds so much! I love their trill, that flash of red on their wings. Down in Southern Ohio in Athens (where I went to med school) there are red wing blackbirds and great blue herons by the hundreds. Drive down Rt. 50, and it's a rare day when you don't see one. I do love birds.

Hilary Martin said...

I'm definitely going to have to visit there!

Suz said...

You had a magic day didn't you
egrets and herons are majestic
and oh those flowers
but what you can't show is the sound
I bet that was the best
Happy Easter

Maiden Jane said...

Amazed that you had such beauty to yourself. What a lovely adventure. I'm intrigued about that book since I read EPL this past year...

Dogwood said...

Love all your photos. I am glad you are feeling better and had a day out in the fresh air.

Have a nice evening...

Hugs, Dogwood

Thimbleanna said...

Wow! It looks so beautiful -- I wish I were your neighbor -- I'd love to go there with you. Now...whe IS your list of top ten favorite birds???

M.E. Greene said...

How lovely! Sounds like a perfect day.

Rachel said...

What a beautiful place - and how lucky you had it to yourself! That was a nice treat.

Did you read Eat, Love, Pray? I borrowed it from a friend who said she didn't like it. I did; I thought it was very good - interesting and inspiring. I plan to read Committed too, although the reviews weren't as good. I want to find out how the story 'ends'.

I'm still thinking about that online book club. Still haven't come up with a name...

Anonymous said...

ohhh these pictures are breathtaking!! such an amazing place to visit.
last summer a neighbour told me i had a heron on my roof, but unfortunately i didn't get to see it and they are rare around here.
we get a great many buzzards, they can look quite magnificent in flight.
i think one of my favourite birds is the little wren.
thank you for sharing these wonderful photographs, you really do spoil us :o) xxx

warm hugs xxx


5orangeptoatoes said...

what a beautiful place and a beautiful post. I agree and wonder why people weren't flocking there. I love gb herons, we have a rookery of them nearby and we are always fascinated to see their tall silhouettes perched high in the trees on the edges of very large nests.

Happy spring.