After completing the Burgess Bird Book and the Burgess Animal Book once, we took extra time using a book from our library called Raptors!. We've taken quite some time to go through it.
After a while, we began playing 'raptor' while driving about town. Of course, more raptors can be found in the country and alongside the highway, but we have been seeing red-tailed hawks at the Oklahoma River near downtown OKC regularly.
After we got used to actually noticing when there were raptors hovering, kettling, or lurking about, we wanted to become more adept at discriminating between them. Ever since we went to a local nature park, and a guide there helped us start seeing the silhouettes more clearly, starting with the significant size and 'v' shape of the wings 'in-flight' for turkey vultures, things have become increasingly clear, and quickly so.
Today our boys finally got to see the pair of Mississippi kites (raptors) that have recently been regularly flying above the tree tops across from our yard! One of them was watching closely enough that he believes that he saw the tail split in some way, so he's thinking that he saw a swallow-tail kite, but we aren't so sure since we are far, far from their traditional territory. I'm thinking it couldn't be........ BUT he's holding onto his idea with great hope, because, after all, a serious birder actually saw a perigrin falcon in our state (Oklahoma) in the last week, so why not a swallow-tail kite! I'm just glad he is so enthused.
Our boys aren't so good at ID'ng other birds, but are enraptured about raptors.
Now, we are finally starting Burgess Bird Book again with our Yr-1 son (even though he's just about done with Yr-1...allegedly anyway.......we'll see how long we really take).
He really got a kick out of the fact that bluebirds and robins are cousins (both thrushes), so we've been watching for robins. Don't you know? I finally am not seeing one every time we drive about!! lol!
We also looked online at a sight that showed the nesting cycle of an Eastern bluebird (the type of bluebirds which frequent our area--- though we haven't seen them). He is bound and determined to bug his father until they build a bird house fitting for an eastern bluebird, and then he wants to try and get our family to purchase a nesting
camera........... yikes! (they run $99 and up).... =]
Since this son obviously doesn't know what a robin looks like, we
obviously haven't had out the proverbial mud bath for the robins to build their nest with........... or seen their nests for that matter.................. *yet*!!!
But now he wants to find robin nests, and a Mississippi kite nest, AND they have been trying to find an owl roost, but to no avail thus
far.............. They'll go hunting for another one this next week, I think.......
And so, the saga continues.