Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tri Colored In The Bag!

This photo was taken during the competition of a Tri Colored Heron. With some photos you can try to make your photo look cute or happy. I tried for more of a serious intriguing photograph with this Heron.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Rare Birds at Altamaha

Black Bellied Whistling Ducks are very rare in Georgia. In fact most bird guides will tell you that they don't even come within a two state range of Georgia. However birds don't read our bird books. This was a group of them that we found during the birding competition!

Clapper Rail

This is a Clapper Rail that we saw on St. Simons island. A wildlife photographer once said " The problem with birders is that they don't look under their own feet." We were walking to the edge of a marsh to look at a Tricolored Heron. I heard some splashes in front of me, I looked down, and there was a Clapper Rail two feet in front of me. I couldn't believe how well this experience matched up perfectly with what the wildlife photographer said.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Rare Bird Sightings

I saw and heard both Blue Winged and Prothonotary Warblers at my house this weekend. I was not able to get any photos but I will try to get some. Rare birds are at your house too! Just pay attention and listen and you will be amazed at what comes your way.

Silly Eastern Bluebird

This Eastern Bluebird loves to attack our cars rear view mirrors. We are pretty sure all he is doing is attacking the other male Bluebird which he sees in the mirror. ( His reflection.) This is another instance where knowing simple behavior experience can help you to get better shots. Knowing how to approach the bird and knowing the birds toleration level. 

Friday, April 22, 2011


When we reach 20 followers, Two Birders and Binoculars will have our first contest! Tell all of your friends to follow us! We will be giving away a Thayer Birding Software Birds of North America CD Rom for Windows! If you have any questions please email us at

Red Shouldered Hawk Opportunity

This is a Red Shouldered Hawk that found a hunting spot and didn't want to move from it, which allowed me to get very good photos. If you are approaching a bird like this and you don't want to scare it. Watch it. It will start to give signals of nervousness. Such as shuffling its feet, turning its head back and fourth, flap its wings a little. When ever one of these things happen, freeze. Then move a minute later.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Banded Brown Headed Nuthatch

This is a Brown Headed Nuthatch that was banded a few years back. We had some researchers come over and band a couple of the Nuthatches. They were researching if unmated Nuthatches helped raise other Nuthatches from another nest. We have two pairs nesting in two different boxes right next to another. They allow you to get very close to them without moving, because you are too close to their nest and they want to protect it. Knowing basic behavior like this can help you get better photos.


Towhee in Winter

It rarely snows in Watkinsville GA, but when it does, we don't waste the opportunity to get some amazing bird shots. This Winter, we snagged a picture of a female Eastern Towhee.
Eastern Towhee


Youth Birding Competition

On April 16-17, 2011, we participated in the 6th Annual Georgia Youth Birding Competition, where we went all around the state of Georgia looking for as many species of birds as we could find in 24 hours.  Starting at 5:00 on April 16, the search began.  After an exhausting 24 hours, we finished at the Charlie Elliot Wildlife Center.  We ended up identifying 112 birds, our most exciting find being a Black-bellied Whistling Duck.  Our team placed third over all which was pretty good for our first year in the High School division.  Next year, we hope to get first place!                        

Tree Swallow

Cattle Egret 

Black-bellied Whistling Ducks


Yellow-crowned Night Heron

Tri-colored Heron

Happy birding,

All Photos: © John Mark Simmons