Stillwater News Press

Local Columnists

May 10, 2014

Life at Boomer Lake 05-11-14

It’s a critical time for animals at Boomer Lake

Things heated up a bit this week, but this is getting to be a critical time, too.

Boomer Lake is losing water due to evaporation, so rain is very necessary at this juncture. Our avian friends, flora and fauna must remain healthy and water is more important than food to their well-being.

We have our first Mallard ducklings! I spotted the first family on Wednesday, both parents just beaming with their little group in tow. The Red-bellied and Red-headed Woodpeckers also let themselves be known, as I made my way into the Northern Reaches to see who might be lurking in the most quiet area of the lake.

Since it has been a bit windy, the Turkey Vultures have been soaring on thermals, as they survey their kingdoms from on high.

Great Egret has also migrated to the main part of the lake and was fishing right next to Great Blue Heron.

However, Great Blue Heron prefers to do his fishing alone, so he rushed off and left Great Egret to his own devices, allowing this magnificent male in breeding plumage to be the victor of the spoils.

There is a great deal of nest building and egg-laying going on as I relay this information, and before we know it, there will be some beautiful young songbirds gracing us with their presence soon. We are hosting the Brown Thrasher, the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, Red-winged Blackbirds, the Cedar Waxwing, several sparrows, Bell’s Vireo, the Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher, American Goldfinch, and many others.

Not only is Boomer Lake home to numerous species of birds, we also have our share of wildlife. This week I have seen the white tailed deer, box turtles, red eared sliders, and several Eastern cottontails.

For those of you that enjoy shorebirds, the Killdeer and the Spotted Sandpiper are showing themselves more frequently. The Spotted Sandpiper is the most widespread, and teeters its rear body up and down constantly. The adult only has spots on its chest and abdomen during breeding times.

Many of you will notice the Northern Mockingbird standing on power lines making an assortment of calls, jumping in the air and doing somersaults quite frequently.

I agree that these birds are rather odd, but it is the male’s way of attempting to attract a mate. Let’s face it, with all that yelling and acrobatics, he is certainly apt to attract something.

The Red-winged Blackbirds have been keeping the American Crow population and the Red-shouldered Hawk at bay. I have been watching droves of the blackbirds escorting the crow and the hawk out of their territories. Soon enough, it will be time for the hawks to spend their share of time hunting and mating, so they will not be gone for good, I assure you.

Keep your eyes to the ground and your head in the clouds. Happy birding until next week, and please keep visiting with me as I report your local birding activities. I enjoy your stories and appreciate you keeping me informed about bird antics.

Deb Hirt is a wild bird rehabilitator and professional photographer living in Stillwater. Half of her wildlife photo sales are returned to the birds via the Payne County Audubon Society. She can be found wandering around Boomer Lake on almost a daily basis monitoring the wild bird population

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local Columnists
  • PIONEER PRIDE: District must meet needs of all students

    July 30, 2014

  • The Library Shelf 07-29-14

    Summer@ Your Library has come to an end. We recorded our highest registration and attendance. We want to say a big thank you to all of our sponsors, but especially to the Friends of the Library who fund most of the programming.

    July 29, 2014

  • 3- Pool Mom of three children Jacinta Sears.jpg AND, STILL THE WATER RUNS: Stillwater pool teams shooting for national championships in Las Vegas

    July 27, 2014 4 Photos

  • AT THE LIBRARY: 7-27-2014

    July 26, 2014

  • HELPING HANDS 7-27-2014

    July 26, 2014

  • Live Well 07-27-14

    The topic of the legal drinking age is an ongoing debate among American politician and citizens. Among the countries that set a legal drinking age, 18 is the most common. Along with Mongolia, Indonesia, Palau and several states in India and Egypt, the United States is an outlier with a minimum purchase age of 21.

    July 26, 2014

  • GREATHERON.jpg Life at Boomer Lake 07-27-14

    The presence of the fledglings is rare, but there are still several juvenile birds around if one looks for them, like the American Robin and the Northern Mockingbird. I have seen nesting Eastern Bluebirds over the past couple of days, so we’re not over the hump of raising young yet.

    July 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • Down Home 07-27-14

    This isn’t the first time and more than likely it won’t be the last. I’m putting myself back on the wagon as I’ve eaten my way through the last pile of “fat” clothes I have stashed in my closet.

    July 26, 2014

  • In the Garden 07-27-14

    Quercus is the Latin name for oak. It is a quirky name; some believe its roots came from the Celtic word for “fine tree.” Anyone familiar with oaks knows they are indeed fine trees.

    July 26, 2014

  • Concerning Kids 07-26-14

    Just last week, I was at a family gathering and one of my cousins found out that I’m a teen librarian.  
    “My son is 11 but he reads at an 11th grade level,” my cousin said. “He loves to read but it’s so hard to find books that are challenging for him and have age appropriate content. What do I do?”

    July 25, 2014

Buy & Share Photos
NewsPress e-Edition
NewsPress Specials
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Stocks
NDN Video
Weird 'Wakudoki' Dance Launches Promotional Competition Two women barely avoid being hit by train Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening Chapter Two: Designing for Naomi Watts NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH) She's Back! See Paris Hilton's New Carl's Jr. Ad Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth
Must Read