Adventures in Grassland Birding

What an amazing birding morning! I've been missing my old birding spots in Kansas lately, not knowing where to go to find the birds in your area is really hard. Luckily there is a trail not far out of town that is bordered on either side by ungrazed pasture, terraces, and waterways where I thought... Continue Reading →

What Makes a Bird…

Where to Start. In this new series of posts, I plan to help people learn the distinguishing traits that make similar species different from one another. This is meant to help beginner birders or someone hoping to brush up on their identification skills. That being said, I thought it would be best to start with... Continue Reading →

The Life of a Bird

This blog is called Journals of a Naturalist, but I must admit that I am especially partial to birds. There may be a few reasons for this partiality. For one, birds are everywhere and they like to let you know it by flashing their bright feathers and letting out distinctive calls. Another reason may be... Continue Reading →

Wildlife at the Water Points

4 August, 2019 This past week I was able to assist my wife in running from Marysville, Kansas to Beatrice, Nebraska along a trail that runs along the Big Blue River. I help by stopping at the trailheads in towns that are about 6-8 miles apart by trail and waiting for her to show up... Continue Reading →

Let the Nesting Begin

19 May, 2019 It's finally here! The moment we've all been waiting for! Nesting time is finally here! I've begun to notice a few bird species nesting in and around my yard this past week. The first nest that I found was a Red-bellied Woodpecker ( ). It is right outside the door of my... Continue Reading →

4 May, 2019

One Week, Two Big Days This week has been an amazing week in birding here in Kansas, especially for students taking ornithology at Kansas State University. On Tuesday we had the big day competition for our class. Saturday was also the global big day. Two big days in one week, crazy! For those who don't... Continue Reading →

21 April, 2019

A Wetland Adventure If you are following this blog and also listen to the Back Porch Birding podcast, you may already know that I recently went on a class trip to the Cheyenne Bottoms wetland area and Quivira National Wildlife Refuge. It was a super exciting time where we got to view some really amazing... Continue Reading →

14 April, 2019

Side-by-side Spring is here, and with it comes the breeding season for most animal species. The birds are singing again and performing their wonderful displays. Males are getting their bright colors back and all are making their way to their breeding grounds. Some pairs have even begun to form already. So far I have seen... Continue Reading →

7 April, 2019

Rare Bird Sighting On Saturday, March 30, 2019, a Say's Phoebe (Sayornis saya) was reported at Fancy Creek State Park in Randolph, KS. Basically my back yard. It was brought to my attention by the rare bird alerts from eBird. Thinking that I had missed my chance at a rare sighting, and slightly upset that... Continue Reading →

31 March, 2019

Sure Signs of Spring Here in Kansas the migrants have begun to arrive. Personally I have seen Eastern Phoebes (Sayornis phoebe), Common Grackles (Quiscalus quiscula), and Turkey Vultures (Cathartes aura) up to this point. Not only are these wonderful birds finally arriving, but all of the birds have begun to sing once more. It's amazing... Continue Reading →

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