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Archive 2013 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...
  
 
trailhiker
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p.1 #1 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


First off, apologies for being scarce here lately. I've been Out and About with the 7D/500 f4/BushHawk, either solo or with "birder" friends, and we've been having quite a time here in southern California. Add to that my ongoing plans for retirement from Kaiser in May of this year, and the accompanying "downsizing" (i.e., getting rid of a lot of "stuff") and, well, just planning on what I'll be doing for the 3 years I'll be On the Road with Discovery (my Lance 1685 travel trailer) -- and STILL working -- it doesn't leave much time left over. But here are a few things...First, the Blue-headed Vireo. While on a birdwalk at Ken Malloy Harbor Regional Park here in Harbor City, my friend Steve Dexter, a veteran birder, saw movement in a tree, lifted his binocs then said "Blue-headed Vireo!" Now, you don't hear that AT ALL west of the Rocky Mountains; the BHVI is an eastern bird. And there have only been 2 records here in California of a wintering BHVI (Point Loma in San Diego County), and that was the same bird that returned. So this is a VERY special bird. As I was there on the birdwalk, I took the first photos of the bird, and once the birding world here saw them, they knew it wasn't a Cassin's Vireo, which comes through here on migration and looks somewhat similar. It's WAY too bright and contrasty; the Cassin's is duller and sort of "washed out", with no clear delineation of the colors. This bird was meant to be SEEN; it's, well, a striking-looking bird. Kimball Garrett, the pre-eminent bird authority here in Los Angeles, refrained from making a positive ID, even after looking at my photos, but when he saw it in-the-field, he knew it could only be a Blue-headed Vireo, and said so. So I'll be sending my photos to the California Rare Birds Committee for documentation of the sighting. Oh and yes, there's the juvenile Yellow-crowned Night Heron at Bolsa Chica that my "wunderkid" (he's 16) birder friend Jose Sandoval and I saw 2 weeks ago -- another Life Bird for both of us. It's nice to be able to put my camera rig to good use for these rare-for-the-area birds. All shot in RAW, adjusted and converted to JPEG in Canon DPP, then tweaked a bit in Paint Shop Pro X3. I'll try to be here a bit more often...

Best Wishes,
Steve



trailhiker 2012


Blue-headed Vireo 1

  Canon EOS 7D    500mm    f/4.5    1/200s    200 ISO    0.0 EV  





trailhiker 2012


Blue-headed Vireo 2

  Canon EOS 7D    500mm    f/4.5    1/200s    200 ISO    0.0 EV  





trailhiker 2012


Blue-headed Vireo 3

  Canon EOS 7D    500mm    f/4.5    1/400s    200 ISO    0.0 EV  





trailhiker 2012


Juvenile Yellow-crowned Night Heron

  Canon EOS 7D    500mm    f/8.0    1/1600s    200 ISO    0.0 EV  





trailhiker 2012


Juvie Yellow-crowned Night Heron and Adult Black-crowned Night Heron

  Canon EOS 7D    500mm    f/7.1    1/400s    100 ISO    +0.7 EV  




Jan 17, 2013 at 03:21 AM
Lil Judd
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p.1 #2 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Steve,

congratulations on the Blue-headed

Nice shots

Lil
P.S. did you get my e-mail from a few days ago



Jan 17, 2013 at 03:25 AM
KirkB
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p.1 #3 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Wow how exciting Steve, huge congrats.
Images looking good my friend... Well,done.

Kirk



Jan 17, 2013 at 03:30 AM
KCollett
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p.1 #4 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Nice set Steve.


Jan 17, 2013 at 03:37 AM
Karl Witt
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p.1 #5 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Oh so now you are a famous rare bird photographer, autograph please

hey buddy was thinking about you recently, wondered what took you off the FM maps for a while? Congrats on your find, lovely little birdy too. I guess they like bugs

Very cool find on the juvi YCNH and a nice contrast against the BCNH!
Good stuff, pace yourself, you are almost retired
And your '1685' travel trailer surely must have some stories to tell in its lifetime

Karl



Jan 17, 2013 at 03:43 AM
Rob Tillyer
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p.1 #6 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Hey Steve go to see you back. Congrats on the two super "finds" and some very nice photos to go with them. Oh and thanks for the story to go with them.

Rob



Jan 17, 2013 at 04:01 AM
johnip
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p.1 #7 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Very cool sighting! The rare ones are that much nicer to get a good photo of.


Jan 17, 2013 at 04:29 AM
birdied
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p.1 #8 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Congratulations Steve !! Wonderful set.

Birdie



Jan 17, 2013 at 04:49 AM
Shasoc
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p.1 #9 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Congratulation on your rare find, Steve! Very nice set with photos that have a special meaning for you.
Good to see you posting
Socrate



Jan 17, 2013 at 05:18 AM
Tim Kuhn
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p.1 #10 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Congrats Steve, he sure wasn't going to make it easy for you!!! Looks like you bored the herons in the last one! Cool set of things we don't see a lot of

Tim



Jan 17, 2013 at 05:30 AM
 

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Conrad Tan
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p.1 #11 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Awesome set man!


Jan 17, 2013 at 06:29 AM
kmunroe
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p.1 #12 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


lovely set Steve


Jan 17, 2013 at 08:23 AM
skibum5
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p.1 #13 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


hate to admit it but you might now have a better shot of the BHV than I do and I live on the East Coast



Jan 17, 2013 at 08:40 AM
trailhiker
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p.1 #14 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Lil Judd wrote:
Steve,

congratulations on the Blue-headed

Nice shots

Lil
P.S. did you get my e-mail from a few days ago


Thanks Lil! Fun Times down here in coastal LA now...

Best Wishes,
Steve



Jan 17, 2013 at 01:21 PM
trailhiker
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p.1 #15 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


KirkB wrote:
Wow how exciting Steve, huge congrats.
Images looking good my friend... Well,done.

Kirk


Thanks Kirk! You should give the Blue-headed Vireo a go here, thinking is that he'll be at Harbor Park for a good part of the winter, and who knows when we'll see another one here in southern California, not to mention the rest of the western US...

Best Wishes,
Steve



Jan 17, 2013 at 01:23 PM
trailhiker
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p.1 #16 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


KCollett wrote:
Nice set Steve.


Thanks Ken!

- Steve



Jan 17, 2013 at 01:24 PM
trailhiker
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p.1 #17 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Karl Witt wrote:
Oh so now you are a famous rare bird photographer, autograph please

hey buddy was thinking about you recently, wondered what took you off the FM maps for a while? Congrats on your find, lovely little birdy too. I guess they like bugs

Very cool find on the juvi YCNH and a nice contrast against the BCNH!
Good stuff, pace yourself, you are almost retired
And your '1685' travel trailer surely must have some stories to tell in its lifetime

Karl


Karl, I'll give you that autograph in person -- signed on the photo of the BHVI -- when I see you in 2014... Yeah, I too like that "comparo" shot of the YCNH and BCNH; you really can tell the difference between the two, particularly in bill size. Pace myself? Seems like things are rushing towards May 2013...Oh, and I have PITA back on the living room floor, and all the instructions at hand, ready to finish her so I can put her on top of the camper shell rack take her for my Journeys With Discovery...

Your Amigo,
Steve



Jan 17, 2013 at 01:29 PM
surfnron
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p.1 #18 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Congrats on the rare sightings Steve. Very nice shots too ~ Ron


Jan 18, 2013 at 01:37 AM
trailhiker
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p.1 #19 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


Rob Tillyer wrote:
Hey Steve go to see you back. Congrats on the two super "finds" and some very nice photos to go with them. Oh and thanks for the story to go with them.

Rob


Thanks Rob! I just sent some of the RAW, untouched photos of the BHVI off to the California Bird Records Committee, which decides if the written and visual documentation is enough to officially list the bird as "rare". But the experts have seen it and have already declared it as such -- but it will be nice to have my photos on file with them.

Best Wishes,
Steve



Jan 19, 2013 at 12:04 PM
trailhiker
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p.1 #20 · Blue-headed Vireo in Los Angeles, and Another...


johnip wrote:
Very cool sighting! The rare ones are that much nicer to get a good photo of.



Thanks John! That's what I'm trying to do here in the South Bay of Los Angeles -- straddle the "dividing line" between "bird photographers" and "birders". I'm hanging out with local birders who are really excellent in spotting the birds, so I've been getting some pretty cool, rare birds with my 500 f4 lately...

Best Wishes,
Steve



Jan 21, 2013 at 01:14 PM
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