Along the Natchez Trace

Sunday, March 10, 2013

This One's For the Birds

Or really...  about the birds...

I've been wanting to walk through Parque Maria Luisa again as it's been 2... maybe 3..  weeks since we've been there.  The skies were blue...  the sun shining...  the air was even fairly warm...

Off we went...  headed up to the park...  the skies got dark...  raindrops fell...  again.

We headed to a cafe ...  had some tapas and a beer...
 The rain wasn't heavy and we were able to sit outside under the awning.
Bill is having a tuna and potato tapa, that's a paella tapa next to my beer, and a spinach-garbanza bean tapa in the lower center.  These are "little" dishes... kind of like a big appetizer...  and we often split them so we can each have a taste of the cuisine.

The rain quit and we headed back to the park...
I'll include some more photos in another blog, but today is
 "For the Birds"
 I don't have a Spanish nor an European bird field guide with me, so these are birds that I'm not really familiar with.

Of course, a mallard is a mallard no matter where it is....
This drake was quite beautiful...  showing off his iridescent green head.

This one's an unknown to me...
If I were here longer and had more time, I'm sure I'd take the time to identify these beautiful birds.

 This one is the most colorful!
He looks very much like the Wood Duck we see in the States...  he's probably closely related...  
Isn't he gorgeous?

I always look for the swans...
Saw only this one today...  you can see the contrast in size between the swan and the ducks.
He's big and beautiful!

This one has to be the Pintail 
Looks just like the pintail we see in the southwest.
His bill isn't as blue as it looks in the photo...  the light is reflecting the water and making it look shiny blue.

Now this guy really does have a blue bill...
Makes me think of a goldeneye...  but....???

The last one isn't a water fowl at all...
This Eurasian Collared Dove is now seen in the States...
The following is from Wikapedia.....
The Collared Dove was introduced into the Bahamas in the 1970s and spread from there to Florida by 1982. It has become invasive;[8] the stronghold in North America is still the Gulf Coast, but it is now found as far south as Veracruz, as far west as California, and as far north as Alaska, the Great Lakes, and Nova Scotia. Some of the more distantly dispersed records may refer to local escapes from captivity.[6] Its impact on other species there is as yet unknown; it appears to occupy an ecological niche between that of the Mourning Dove and the Rock Pigeon (also an invasive species in North America).[citation needed] In Arkansas (United States), the species was recorded first in 1989 and since then has grown in numbers and is now present in 42 of 75 counties in the state. It spread from the southeast corner of the state in 1997 to the northwest corner in 5 years, covering a distance of about 500 kms at a rate of 100 kms per year[9]. This is more than double the rate of 45 kms per year observed in Europe[10].

After spending some time at the bird sanctuary, we headed home.  It's a good thing we left when we did as we hardly got in our door when the rains started again.

Hopefully, the rains that we've been having for over a week now will be over soon.  I'm ready for sunshine and warm weather!

That's All For Today!


  1. Those ducks are beautiful. What does a pesrson drink in Europe if he doesn't drink alcohol?

    1. Looks to me like the same as we drink in the States... we drink tap water here (it's quite safe), but there is everything from bottled water to soft drinks to juices. Right now (7:15 am) I'm drinking a glass of Minute Maid Cranberry Juice... Rosa will have freshly squeezed orange juice at breakfast (8:30). I see lots of Coca Cola bottles on the outdoor restaurant tables. I've seen the aisle of soft drinks at the grocery but haven't checked them out as we don't drink them.

    2. Thanks for the info. I drink dark, extra strong, Columbian coffee.

  2. I missed your wonderful flamenco post of yesterday. Those dancers and costumes are so colorful. It must have been a wonderful evening of entertainment.
    You really got some great shots of the waterbirds. I've been following the blog of a guy named Bob in Gloucester. He takes amazing photos of European birds and I found your "Wood Duck" on his page and it's called a Mandarin Duck. You can check out his blog at You'll be glad you did!

  3. There is a Tapas restaurant on South Padre Island. A group of ladies from the refuge went there and we ordered a bunch of different things and shared them. Very good food and a reasonable price.

  4. The swan is so graceful and pretty and big all at the same time. But the Mallard remains my favorite.
    Hope the sun is shining soon!

  5. Your tours are most interesting and informative.

  6. The wood duck looks like a carving--beautiful photo.

  7. I enjoyed the bird photos even though I can't identify most of them either. :)