Sunday, February 8, 2009

Flirting and Displaying...

Cute Husband and I do some citizen science each year by helping with the Patuxent River Water Bird count.

We always find something wonderful and the weather (it hit 60 degrees!) yesterday begged to be outdoors. On our first stop, we found a Lesser Black-backed Gull slumming with some Ring-billeds.

And, when we scoped the river, we found more Common Goldeneye than we have ever seen on the river. The males, in their finest breeding clothes, were in the midst of some serious flirting.

Common Goldeyes have a spectacular courtship display. It starts with some innocent roaming around a female. The male then throws his head back so that his neck is contorted against his rump.

Occasionally, he will kick up his legs and let out a sound which is very similar to a Common Nighhawk.

The show was so stirring, I found it difficult to count the multitude of Buffleheads (who were doing their own displays) or note the number of Scaup who kept mixing in with the action.

I thought I might try some of this displaying business on the Cute Husband.

Spring was in the air!

I started by giving him the eye.....

He remained focused on the job at hand.

I then gave him my winning smile.... no luck. So, I moved to the tousled hair, hopeful look.
Warren took no notice.
So, I threw my head back and made Nighthawk like sounds. Nothing. In desperation, I moved to some Bufflehead-like displays.
I tried to enlarge my head and pump it up and down.
Shaking it from side to side.....

Finally! Success!
In all honesty, this picture was taken after we had just seen our first ever Barrow's Goldeneye which my genius Husband found in a flock of Greater Scaup.
But,I still think he is not immune to my flirting....


Kim said...

Ha very cute! I see your displaying finally worked out in the end!! ;o)

I am very impressed with all your fancy camera equipment. Heck, if I had to manage all that I would be preoccupied too!! HA

Kathie Brown said...

I hope he never gets immune to it! Congrats on the find! This was fun to read!

Dawn Fine said...

Ha...nice birdie poses....Glad you finally got the attention of your mate...but how could you not after that display!

Congrats on the Barrows..

sandy said...

Adorable post!!! I really enjoyed this. What cute birds you are.