San Diego River run

My older son has classes this summer on Thursdays from 5-7 over near the river so I decided to take advantage and go for a 4.5 mile run/walk. I had to stay focused on the running for 3 miles before allowing myself to look for birds. Right at that 3 mile mark, a Little Blue Heron showed up at the waters edge. Further down near my car was a Great Blue Heron to provide some size contrast. Photos were taken with my iPhone using it’s minimal zoom so they are fuzzy:

Little Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

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You never know what you will see when watering your yard

The title is my disclaimer up front that the two photos were not taken by me! My camera was inside the house charging in preparation for an upcoming trip. My phone was also inside. I merely stepped outside to water before heading out for a run this morning and I was greeted first my the unusual calls of both birds, and then rather brilliantly with close encounters with each. The first was the rather striking head of a Townsend’s Warbler:

He was checking out the peach tree while I was watering the plants in the other corner of the yard but I was able to get quite close to him to see all of his gorgeous markings. After he flew off, I went over to the peach tree to water it and heard a woodpecker calling fairly close by. I figured it was in the dense branches of the pine trees behind my neighbors house so I didn’t really look for it. Then I see something larger than the usual finch or sparrow bouncing around in the bottle-brush right behind the peach tree. As I stepped forward to look closer, he came right into clear view – a Nuttal’s Woodpecker with it’s distinctive all striped back and red crown on top:

Beautiful!

Next time, I’m carrying the camera around my neck just in case. Which will most likely be followed by a post titled “wet cameras don’t take good pictures!”