Thursday, August 25, 2011

Parking Lot Birding

.Monday morning I was sitting drinking coffee in front of the hotel where I was staying in Denver. The view wasn't exciting - rows of cars, lines of lampposts and a few small trees - so I didn't have my camera with me.

Suddenly a rabbit hopped across between the cars and passed by within 3-4 feet of me. Then three Magpies flew down and searched the edge of the lot for food. As I turned to leave, I saw another bird out of the corner of my eye. It was largish and brown and/or grey, and as it flew I thought I glimpsed a white rump and blackish tail. I couldn't think what it was.

The next morning I was in front of the hotel again, but this time I had my camera. Luckily! A loud call from on top of a lampost made me look up to see - a male Northern Flicker. What an odd bird to see in an urban parking lot!

A few minutes later his mate arrived.

I realized this was the bird I had glimpsed the previous day.

She proceeded to do her morning grooming.

Turning back to enter the hotel, I looked up to see a Double-crested Cormorant cross the sky above, followed a moment later by an American Crow. Then I noticed a bird on the corner of the hotel roof. An American Kestrel.

It just shows that even the most unlikely places can produce interesting bird sightings - and that you should always carry a camera.

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