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Birding in Michigan, May 2011

25 May–1 June 2011

I visited and birded with my son and daughter-in-law, John and Tracy, and grandchildren, Darby, Sam, and Cami in MI.  We spent Saturday hiking trails and birding in beautiful white oak-dominated Kensington Metropark along the Huron R and lakes near Milford, MI.  I was told by a former Michigan birder, now in CO, that Black-capped Chickadees would take seeds from your hand!  Well, we found that EVERY bird species will feed from your hand, including, amazingly, a male and female Greater Sandhill Crane with their two very young colts!  I had read that the sandhills first nested in the park in 2002.  John and the kids and I went to the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum on Sunday and we all attended the Royal Oak Memorial Day parade on Monday.  A selection of birding and family photos follows.  Many great photos were shot by Tracy and I have marked them as such.

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43-52811 Lactating Pine (Red) Squirrel, our first hint that animals were eating gifts of seeds, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


121-52811 Darby with Pine Squirrel, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy


122-52811 Darby and Sam with Pine Squirrel, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy


123-52811 Darby and Sam with Pine Squirrel, "Can we come a little closer?", Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy


49-52811 Painted Turtle, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


50-52811 Painted Turtle, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


58-52811 Eastern Chipmunk looking for treats, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


62-52811 Great Crested Flycatcher calling, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


64-52811 Great Crested Flycatcher calling, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


124-52811 Darby, Sam, John, with Cami in the stroller, and Grandma Birdie looking for birds!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy


135-52811 Darby, John, and Cami looking for birds, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

167-52811 "I (Cami) am loving looking for birds, too!", Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

138-52811 Grandma Birdie says, "Hold your hand out flat!", and a Black-capped Chickadee came to take a seed!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

141-52811 It worked, the Black-capped Chickadee came back to Darby's hand!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

145-52811 The Black-capped Chickadee flew to the tree to crack open the seed, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

150-52811 Wood Anemone (Anemone quinquefolia) in the white oak forest, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

152-52811 Sam putting his inchworm back on the tree leaf, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

153-52811 Darby looking for more birds, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

158-52811 Sam loves the adventure in the white oak forest!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

162-52811 Looking for "rolly pollies" (sowbugs) and other goodies in the leaf litter of the white oak forest, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

164-52811 Sam and Darby found a bug!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

165-52811 Sam and Darby have a bug in their bug magnifier, thanks to Dad's backpack of goodies he has been carrying!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

171-52811 Is this a tiny red mite of some kind that they spotted in the litter?, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

177-52811 A Downy Woodpecker comes to grab a seed from Tracy's hand, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011, Photo by Tracy


67-52811 Black-capped Chickadee feeding from Tracy's hand, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


20-52811 Darby and Sam enticing a Black-capped Chickadee, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


74-52811 Red-winged Blackbird and Brown-headed Cowbird, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


90-52811 Downy Woodpecker feeding from Tracy's hand, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


78-52811 Downy Woodpecker flying off with sunflower seed from Tracy's hand, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


94-52811 Red-bellied Woodpecker took his seed to the tree to open and eat, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


97-52811 Red-bellied Woodpecker ate his seed, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


100-52811 Red-bellied Woodpecker — Please, I want another one!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


109-52811 Red-bellied Woodpecker found a sunflower seed, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011


115-52811 Red-winged Blackbird found a sunflower seed, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

116-52811 Downy Woodpecker takes sunflower seed from Tracy's hand, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

119-52811 Downy Woodpecker drops sunflower seed from Tracy's hand, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

124-52811 Here come two adult Greater Sandhill Cranes through the tall grass toward the trail we were on! Shock!, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

156-52811 As they reached the trail, we saw the two colts with them.  They very unconcernedly "ate" their way toward us. Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

157-52811 We assumed the larger and more watchful and protective bird on the right was the male.  Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

168-52811 They all fed on spilled birdseed in the path right in front of us.  John had moved Cami in her stroller to the side of the trail, just as Darby, Sam, and I did.  Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

173-52811 They continued to feed on spilled birdseed in the path right in front of us until the male realized that Tracy was sitting on a bench with seeds in her extended hand.  Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

175-52811 Tracy and we were amazed when the male began feeding gently from her hand!  Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

176-52811 The male continued to feed from her hand!  Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

177-52811 The male continued to feed from her hand while the female and chicks fed from the trail in front of us, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

179-52811 The male continued  feeding from her hand, gently taking one tiny seed at a time, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

182-52811 The male continued feeding from her hand, gently taking one tiny seed at a time until they were all gone!  He then gently pecked at her shoe. Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

183-52811 Tracy was mesmerized!  She had been taking photos of the smaller birds with her iPhone, not expecting a crane family to walk up to us! Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

6-52811 Eight-month-old Cami loved watching the show from her stroller!  Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

191-52811 We found the Great Blue Heron rookery in white oak trees on an island in a lake, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

213-52811 There also were several pairs of Mute Swans on the lake, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

218-52811 These Great Blue Heron nests are in a partially dead white oak tree on an island in a lake, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

228-52811 A Red-winged Blackbird on the boardwalk along the lake begging for our last sunflower seeds! Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

244-52811 Darby and Sam heard and then found this well-camoflaged bullfrog in a small pond along the trail, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

252-52811 We found another pair of Mute Swans with 5 cygnets along another lake, Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

267-52811 I wasn't brave enough to get any closer to these notoriously protective Mute Swan parents! Kensington Metropark, Milford, MI, 28 May 2011

14-52911 Sam found this garter snake when we were hiking in the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum near Ann Arbor, MI, 29 May 2011

32-52911 The garter snake was pretty tame, the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum near Ann Arbor, MI, 29 May 2011

26-52911 Eastern Bluebird in shade in the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum near Ann Arbor, MI, 29 May 2011

40-52911 Canada Goose parent with 9 goslings in the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum near Ann Arbor, MI, 29 May 2011

34-52911 Canada Goose gosling resting in shade in the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum near Ann Arbor, MI, 29 May 2011

36-52911 Canada Goose gosling feeding in grass in the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum near Ann Arbor, MI, 29 May 2011

311-52711 Northern Cardinal under the feeder in John's front yard.  They are nesting in their back yard! MI, 27 May 2011

368-52611 Northern Cardinal under the feeder in John's front yard.  This pair is nesting in their back yard! MI, 26 May 2011

318-52711 White-breasted Nuthatch at safflower feeder in John's front yard. MI, 27 May 2011

331-52711 Eastern Gray Squirrel with brown tail under the feeder in John's front yard. MI, 27 May 2011

349-52711 Eastern Chipmunk filling his pouches under the feeder in John's front yard. MI, 27 May 2011

359-52611 Mourning Dove under the feeder in John's front yard. MI, 27 May 2011

21-6111 Cami and Grandma Birdie on "bird photo" quilt I made for them, John's front lawn, MI, 1 June 2011

64-6111 Murphy, their yellow lab, as always, guarding his kids! 1 June 2011

81-53111 Darby and Sam working on projects, MI, 31 May 2011

88-53111 Darby treating us to her new songs on the piano, MI, 31 May 2011

102-53111 Cami trying to crawl! MI, 31 May 2011

109-53011 John and Cami at the Royal Oak, MI Memorial Day Parade, 30 May 2011

110-53011 John and Cami at the Royal Oak, MI Memorial Day Parade, 30 May 2011

127-53011 Amazing band treating everyone at the Royal Oak, MI Memorial Day Parade, 30 May 2011

143-52911 John and Cami in the Children's Garden at the U of MI Arboretum near Ann Arbor, MI, 29 May 2011

147-52911 Sam and Cami on the front lawn, MI, 29 May 2011

156-52911 Darby and Cami on the front lawn, MI, 29 May 2011

158-52911 Darby, Sam, and Cami on the front lawn, MI, 29 May 2011

1-53111 Cami smiling as always, MI, 31 May 2011

275-52711 Always happy Cami, MI, 27 May 2011

304-52711 Darby and Cami, MI, 27 May 2011

216-52911 Darby in red, white, and blue at the Royal Oak, MI Memorial Day Parade, 30 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

219-52911 Sam, Cami, and Darby in red, white, and blue at the Royal Oak, MI Memorial Day Parade, 30 May 2011, Photo by Tracy

©2016 Kayleen A. Niyo, All Rights Reserved

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