Sunday, May 18, 2014

My Encounter with a Western Tanager

I took an abbreviated hike this afternoon on the Dakota Ridge Hogback trail.  A brightly-colored bird flew by me and perched briefly in a tree twenty feet up the trail.  I pulled my compact digital camera from my pack and snapped one shot before the bird flew away.  (I really need to keep my camera in my shirt pocket.)  Here is an enlargement of the bird.

A quick picture search of birds on Google revealed that this beautiful creature is a male Western Tanager, brilliant in his breeding plumage.  A top hat, spats, and a cane are all he needs to complete his image as the dapper Fred Astaire of the Rocky Mountain bird community.

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