When out and about at the Western Treatment Plant, often I’m asked, “What are you looking at/photographing”.
Which is an interesting question in an area of such a multiplicity of bird species.
Usually the question is only an introduction to a more meaningful question. “Have you spotted something I should look at, or have you located my target bird for the day”.
Not always, but often times the question comes after one or two fourwheel drives have arrived at great speed, like the devil hisself was after them. Wind down window, “What have you seen…”
Or after having driven past where I was sitting several times, curiosity overcomes and the “What have you seen…” is often asked.
The second part of the question really is, “Have you seen the bittern, or pehaps the plentiful pec sandpipers, or maybe even the long-toed stint, or the black-winged bluetailed rock-eater.” As surely its been mentioned on spaceblock or elist, or someone’s text message.
So I generally respond, “Striated Fieldwrens”. Oh, -quickly checks bird list, no don’t need one, Safari of vehicles disappears in proverbial cloud of dust.
Or, “Have you seen any?”, to which usually, truthfully, I can say, “Oh, not yet, but I’ve only been waiting thirty minutes so far”, Eyes glaze over, window winds up, dust indicates the vehicle has moved on.
Now to be fair, not every encounter is like that. Often good birding discussions take place and the cloud of departing dust is tolerable.
However on a fine sunny evening as we were negotiating some areas of said Treatment Plant, EE and I saw on a number of occasions, Straited Fieldwrens. We saw more in one afternoon than in the past three years.
And they were all out, and about, and calling, and displaying. Easy to approach, great light, in the open. Photography doesn’t get any easier.
Enjoy. We did.