Termite Hatch

Bewick's Wren
Bewick’s Wren – 2011

It is usually pretty hard to predict what you will see on a birding outing, unless you are going to the local pond looking for mallards.

But sometimes the world works like clockwork and past performance does guarantee future results. Such is the case with the annual termite hatch.

Every year, the first rain gets termites stirring in their underground chambers. After the rain passes and the ground warms, legions of termites with newly grown wings march up and take flight.

Only to be eaten by the birds who have also been waiting for the day.

This is a day to see wrens and warblers. Those little flits, you hear but never quite see, throw caution to the wind as they gobble up the termite hordes.

Yellow Warbler
Yellow Warbler – 2011

Bewick’s Wrens were out in force, grabbing termites off the ground and occasionally in the air. The Townsend’s Warblers were big on picking them out of the air. And while I tried, I was unable to catch a mid air grab.

There was also an “new” warbler for me, the Yellow Warbler. I think it fits into the category of birds that I have seen, but never noticed.

Chickadees, juncos, and quail were also filling their gullets with termites. It was an easy day to be a bird.

And as a result, an easy day to be a birder.

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