Water Features, Birds and Dragonflies

by Larry Jordan on July 25, 2010

California Quail Male photos by Larry Jordan

We have several pair of California Quail that appear to be nesting on our property.  They come to the water feature to drink every day.

A water feature or pond, especially with moving water, is irresistable to birds (see my post from a couple of years ago).

As they approach the pond, the male quail seeks high ground and is the look out for the female as she forages nearby and drinks from the pond.

I have been patiently awaiting the arrival of the cute little quail chicks but they have yet to appear.  In the meantime here are some of the other visitors to the water feature.

a Female Lesser Goldfinch

a Flame Skimmer

and a pair of Northern Bluet Damselflies in tandem

I’ve always wondered about the way these Damselflies mate so I found this graphic from Encyclopedia Britannica and thought I would pass it on as well as a very interesting explanation with graphics here.

Some of the juvenile birds frequenting the feeders and water feature, other than the ubiquitous Lesser Goldfinches are some Western Scrub-Jays

Acorn Woodpeckers (the juvenile’s eyes are blue, the adult’s are yellow)

the first American Goldfinch of the fall

and, what I believe to be a juvenile male Black-headed Grosbeak

Note the creamy yellow gape flanges still visible on this bird (most apparent on larger image).  As usual, click on images for larger versions.

If you want to see some great bird photography every week, check out Bird Photography Weekly!

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Mick July 25, 2010 at 2:40 pm

The Quail are really beautiful – as are the rest of the creatures that visit the water. It’s especially nice to see all the juveniles and to know that the breeding season has gone well and that those species are OK for another year.
.-= Mick´s last blog ..Double Trouble! =-.


Eileen July 25, 2010 at 3:11 pm

Wonderful photos and birds, Larry! The Quail is a cool yard bird. I would love to the see the Acorn Woodie and the Black headed Grosbeak.
.-= Eileen´s last blog ..New Germany State Park =-.


Dawn Fine July 25, 2010 at 5:57 pm

Great critters you have around you! I love that flame skipper!
Hope you are having a wonderful summer and staying cool!


Amber Coakley July 25, 2010 at 9:30 pm

Hi Larry,
I just finished rebuilding my bird lounge, which includes a water feature. I think my favorite bird behavior to watch is birds in the birdbath. All of that splashing makes them seem so happy and carefree. You sure have a great variety of birds seeking the oasis you have built for them. Way to go!
.-= Amber Coakley´s last blog ..Truck Donation to Charity Motors for WRR =-.


Crafty Green Poet July 25, 2010 at 10:48 pm

lovely series of photos, great selection of creatures!
.-= Crafty Green Poet´s last blog ..Foxglove =-.


bob k July 26, 2010 at 2:24 am

Oh Larry, I miss California birds. Thanks for posting these. Having a nostaglia trip here. 🙂
.-= bob k´s last blog ..Palay-palay Away =-.


The Zen Birdfeeder July 26, 2010 at 9:31 am

Nice series. I especially love that juvie Acorn Woodpecker. I wish they were in my neck of the woods.
.-= The Zen Birdfeeder´s last blog ..Book Review- Bayshore Summer =-.


dreamfalcon July 27, 2010 at 12:48 am

I’d love to see Quails in the wild once – thanks to you I can see them in photos at least!
.-= dreamfalcon´s last blog ..Leopard Moth – Zeuzera pyrina =-.


Halcyon July 27, 2010 at 4:11 pm

Such lovely birds. I’m always fascinated by quail. They look so neat with the extra head feather.
.-= Halcyon´s last blog ..Sweet Blue Man =-.


Valerie July 29, 2010 at 6:19 am

Such a pleasure to see your photos. The quail is so neat, I love the juveniles. What is it about baby birds that is so captivating?


Idaho_Birder July 29, 2010 at 2:15 pm

I really enjoyed those photos! Thanks Larry.
.-= Idaho_Birder´s last blog ..2010 in 2010- eBird Idaho – The Final Results!!! =-.


NatureFootstep August 2, 2010 at 12:59 pm

a lot of nice birds photograpy again. You have a lot of different birds over there. The woodpecker and the grosbeak are really interesting.
.-= NatureFootstep´s last blog ..Gone birding and swimming =-.


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