A few nights ago as I sat outside enjoying the cool, low humidity evening, I happened upon (rather it happened upon me) a juvenile Cedar Waxwing. The little bird was fluttering about trying to do its first successful flight. Of course I couldn't resist the urge to take a closer look. It's red splotches on the wing hadn't yet emerged, but it's yellow band on it's tail was plainly evident. Also, it's mask was just becoming visible. It's parents swooped closely past me as I sat less than two feet away from the young bird. Their flight reminded me of swallows in search of food over an open field as they swooped close to the ground and then steeply up and around in a circle. I then snapped a few quick photos of the bird, and moved on to search for more interesting birds.
The list of birds that I went on to accumulate that night was actually quite impressive (for my area). As I passed the garden, many American Goldfinches were feasting on the seeds fresh out of the sunflowers, and more Cedar Waxwings were perched atop the corn plants. Nearby, a Gray Catbird was calling from the elderberry bush. After spending quite some time watching these birds, I went a short way back the trail through the field to the woods. Along the way I saw multiple Common Yellowthroats:
In the distance I heard a Carolina Chickadee and a White-Breasted Nuthatch calling. Nearby, a Northern Flicker called loudly. I saw two more Gray Catbirds in a briar bush. In the woods across the field a Great Horned Owl was calling frequently. It is terribly annoying to hear Great Horned Owls in the woods so close to me but to have never actually seen one. Mourning Doves were everywhere, flying to their roosts for the night. I saw sevral Song and Chipping Sparrows, and saw one Eastern Bluebird and one Red-Winged Blackbird. I saw a total of 28 different species that night, many of them being fairly uncommon.