December 29, 2020

2020 is almost over, and what a strange year it was. I didn't do any out of state photo trips in 2020 - in fact, I haven't left Northern New Mexico since the pandemic arrived - but I had a good spring photographing in the mountains around Santa Fe and Los Alamos. Those photos will hopefully be coming along soon, but first, I had to catch up on a few lingering 2019 photos from an early fall trip to photograph migrant songbirds in Northern Ohio.

Philadelphia Vireo

A Philadelphia Vireo posed against a backdrop of Virginia Creeper and other fall foliage.

Most of my work on warbler photography has involved finding singing males on their breeding grounds, but in recent years I've been working on getting more warbler photos featuring females and birds in dull fall plumage. Though less flashy than breeding males, these female and basic plumaged birds have a subtle beauty all their own. This trip was more or less a repeat of my trip to Ohio in 2018. I had been planning to repeat this trip again in 2020, but with the covid situation, that will have to wait till 2021.

Bay-breasted Warbler

This fall Bay-breasted Warbler lacks the striking chestnut colors of breeding plumaged birds, and is probably either a female or a first year bird. Fall Bay-breasted Warblers can be difficult to distinguish from other drab fall warblers such as the Blackpoll Warbler, but the lack of streaking on the underparts, the richer yellow-green of the upperparts, the plain face, and lack of yellow on the feet help to identify this bird.

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