Tuesday, May 21, 2019
In the first two photos, the male Baltimore Oriole is on the left and the female on the right. The third photo is just of the male. The last four photos show the female Baltimore Oriole.
We can ID this warbler as a breeding male Cape May Warbler as follows:
- Yellow underparts with black streaks that converge at throat.
- Face has rufous patch at eye, dark eyestripe and yellow eyebrow.
- Undertail pattern is that of a Cape May Warbler.
- Undertail coverts are yellowish near belly and white near tail.
- Bright yellow throat.
- The little we can see of the nape is yellow.
- Prominent white wingbar.
The Cape May Warbler is a new species to our Photographic Life List,which now stands at
Monday, May 20, 2019
Both male and female birds have what is known as cloaca. This is an internal chamber and through this opening, a bird's sex organ - testes or ovaries - discharge sperm or eggs. The same opening also is used for expulsion of urinary and digestive waste. During mating seasons, the cloacal openings swell, protruding outside the bird's body.
In this mating of Caspian Terns shown in the photos below, the male is on top of the female. The female opens her bill and snaps it shut. The female then lifts her tail high to expose her rear and her cloacal opening The male arches back, rubs his cloaca against hers so that his sperm is deposited into her cloacal opening. The male's sperm travels up the female's chamber and fertilizes the eggs. The female grabs at her partners bill and than the male lifts out. This delicate balancing act can sometimes take several attempts before resulting in successful copulation.