Thanks so much for your help in IDing our pair of birds. I am now in agreement with Clarence and GTS that they are Marbled Godwits. Sorry TX Tibbs I originally thought we had Long billed curlews too, but I'm now sure Clarence and GTS are correct.
The Godwits have either moved or left our place--I'm not sure why, but hopefully it's not something we did in disturbing them. Yearly we only have one pair and it seems they come in mid April and then leave this time of year. I will have to keep better records to see what they do. They definitely are neat birds!
TTB: By all means do start a list of the birds you have. I want to do that too, along with a discription. That is the way I started my book on plants and grasses, just wanted to make a sort of an inventory, have had a lot of favorable comments on it. It is definatly something I can leave for the family as a heritage. I want to comment on you picture, I think it is pretty good, unless you have tried, you do not know how hard it is to get good pictures of wildlife, first you can not get close, then they move away, or they blend so well into their surroundings. It is also hard to photograph plants, they blend with their surrounding, move with the wind, and as you want to be close up, it is hard to focuse on all if the plant. You have to decide if you want to focus on all of the plant or just on the flower.
Clarence, thanks for the advice. I think we'll try and do this. Maybe starting with the "flora" will get my husband excited about it. He gets more excited about grass and trees---
Additionally, my dad has been doing this for years on his operation on the CO/NM border. He has range maps made that fit in a little binder, and he makes daily notes about the range condition, moisture, number of cows in a location, number of type of wildlife per location, and plant development. He also likes gadgets, so has now incorporated a GPS unit and digital camera. We run on public lands so they BLM and Forest Service guys are easier to work with if ranchers make an effort to have good documentation. These have been some of the tools my Dad has used to not only improve relations with the BLM and Forest Service, but also some local environmental groups, and also I think has increased our stocking rates (during 12 years of drought).
Turkey Track Bar,
That's a very nice picture of a marbled godwit. Their bills turn up slightly and the long billed curlews turns down quite dramatically. You live a little too far east for curlews. A sighting at your place would be very unusual. They have been seen, rarely, in Perkins Co. and more in Harding Co. and much more as you get into Mont.
GTS: I'm glad to see you made it to the "new format" on the site. I thought you probably did, but haven't seen much posting from you. Thanks for complement on the picture. I wish I could have gotten a sideview so the bill would be easier to see.
How are things up in your area? Did you get much moisture? I heard Lemmon had somewhere between 1 and 2 inches this past weekend. We got .3" on Sunday night. I keep telling the hubby we'll get our chance someday, and those who are getting in now need it more than we do--I think he's starting to doubt my optimism!
Have you started calving yet? For us "early" calvers (March/April) we couldn't have asked for nicer weather or better conditions. We have a few stragglers (they drive me crazy!!) but are mostly done.
Everyone, thanks for the help in IDing the Marbled Godwit. What a wealth of info. we have here on this site!
Cheers for a great day and more moisture!