Tuesday 14 January 2014 73 °F
Today my mom took our family on a driving tour around the area. Before that, though, I took a short walk around the hotel grounds and saw this beautiful California Quail again:
On the first leg of the driving tour, I spotted a productive birding spot, so we stopped the car and I got out and snapped a few photos. Here they are:
This is a photo of a Marsh Harrier. This species is a common soaring raptor in New Zealand, kind of like a cross between two common raptors in North America: Northern Harrier and Red-tailed Hawk.
The first planned stop on our hike was a beautiful hike around weird, volcanic boulders scattered throughout native sub-tropical rainforest. I saw a few birds, including this beautiful Common Chaffinch:
The next and last stop was for lunch and some birding on the mudflats near there. I saw some nice birds, including SACRED KINGFISHER, WESTERN REEF and WHITE-FACED HERONS, WHITE-FRONTED and CASPIAN TERNS, SILVER, RED-BILLED, and KELP GULLS, as well as VARIED OYSTERCATCHERS. Here are a few photos:
Caspian and White-fronted Terns
White-fronted Tern in flight
That's it for today folks. Tomorrow I will be going on an all-day pelagic birding trip (on a boat, of course) with the rest of my family. I am hoping to see gannets and boobies (the bird, not the breast), and possibly shearwaters, petrels, or rare gulls or terns. Stay tuned for the excitement!
World Life List: 457 (up from 450 yesterday)