On the Road and In Your Backyard

Good Morning All,

This is the first post…of the end, until the Great Transmogrification.

On The Road is no longer accepting new content, and the form has now been shut down. We will wend through the existing submissions, with a few from me, interspersed, as warranted.

In a couple of weeks or more, we’ll introduce a new submission form with the new OTR format; both will launch when the new site launches. You can always use the existing Contact form to contact me until the new site launch, for larger or other submissions/issues.

Once the new site launches, OTR and submissions will be handled a bit differently, as will contact to me and other Front-Pagers. We are not publishing our new addresses in text/bot-readable format. Of course, those who know our personal addresses will not lose access.


Today we appreciate yet another amazing submission by Albatrossity – thank you, dear friend, we so look forward to more on the new site.


Have a wonderful day, and enjoy the pictures, everybody!


Today, pictures from valued commenter Albatrossity.

More images of the critters found in the Flint Hills of Kansas.

Taken on 2016-05-07 00:00:00

Flint Hills of Kansas

Upland Sandpipers are one of those counter-intuitive shorebirds that are found on grasslands (like Long-billed Curlew in North America or Greater Sandplover in Asia). They also have one of the longest migrations of any bird, flying from the North American grasslands to the pampas of Argentina and back on an annual basis. Their cheerful wolf-whistle calls are a sure sign of spring here.

Taken on 2018-07-27 00:00:00

Flint Hills of Kansas

Common Nighthawks were formerly indeed common, but are now declining across much of North America. They are a common breeding bird in the Flint Hills still, but even here there are signs of decreasing populations, perhaps due to the precipitous decline in populations of flying insects.

Taken on 2018-08-16 00:00:00

Flint Hills of Kansas

Blue Grosbeaks are a surprisingly unobtrusive bird, despite their colorful plumage, but can usually be located by listening for their song. They are not a strictly grassland-dependent species, but are found in the edges (ecotone) between shrubs/small trees and grass.

Taken on 2018-05-08 00:00:00

Flint Hills of Kansas

One of the birds whose return I look forward to every year is the Orchard Oriole. Smaller and less flashy than our Baltimore Orioles, they also are a bird of the edges, frequenting shrubby patches in the grasslands. It is a good day if you can get out out in the open and admire it.

Taken on 2017-08-08 00:00:00

Flint Hills of Kansas

This is one of the most mysterious birds in North America, the Sedge Wren. These birds travel through the Flint Hills in the spring, heading north to short-grass meadows and sedge marshes in the upper midwest, the Dakotas, and Canada’s prairie provinces. They head south in late July and spend August and September in the Flint Hills, building nests and singing lustily from tallgrass or sedges along the streamsides. They apparently do not breed here, despite all that effort, and in October they disappear. This one is perched on an Ironweed, a very common flowering plant here in July and August.


Thank you so much Albatrossity, do send us more when you can.


Travel safely everybody, and do share some stories in the comments, even if you’re joining the conversation late. Many folks confide that they go back and read old threads, one reason these are available on the Quick Links menu.



16 replies
  1. 1
    mrmoshpotato says:

    One of the birds whose return I look forward to every year is the Orchard Oriole. Smaller and less flashy than our Baltimore Orioles, they also are a bird of the edges, frequenting shrubby patches in the grasslands.

    But could a group of 9 beat the Baltimore Orioles? 😁

    Nice pictures. That Upland Sandpiper is quite handsome.

  2. 2
    NotMax says:

    As testing of the rebuild by us hoi polloi has not yet commenced, maybe not all that soon.

  3. 3
    JPL says:

    The Sedge Wren is so cute.

  4. 4
  5. 5
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    I can’t get the first 2 pics. Is that a problem only for me?

    3 years ago we were paid a spring time visit by a blue grosbeak. I think I squeeled like a 12 yr old girl at a Justin Bieber concert.

  6. 6
    J R in WV says:

    We had a Sandpiper lay eggs in our office building parking lot one summer, in the not yet grassy gravely dirt between parking rows, the first year after we moved into the new structure. So there were signs and cones and Do Not Cross tape, to keep unwary visitors from walking on the nest.

    It all worked, and tiny sandpipers were seen by all at the end of the nesting season. In the parking lot, mostly. Then they moved off west into the residential neighborhood next to the new office building. There was a high proportion of birders, as wildlife biologists tend to that kind of hobbies.

    Thanks again for the wonderful birding pix!!

  7. 7
    debbie says:

    Sticking a one-legged landing! Good work, Sedge Wren!

  8. 8
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    Lovely birds! Please post your website – I need Juicer photographs from you and BillinGlendale. I (and my gift recipients) need more cool photographs.

    Curtis is a bit out of my price range, though I’m looking into later pressings/reproductions. Art for the image, not the original for the sake of owning an early pressing.

  9. 9
    JeanneT says:

    So lovely! It makes me want to take up birding and hang out in the grasslands – even if it’s just the local oak openings, not real tall grass prairie.

  10. 10
    Albatrossity says:

    @Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho: I don’t have a website for my photographs. I do post a Bird of the Day tweet every morning (https://twitter.com/DaveRintoul01), and I post a lot of bird and landscape images on my FaceBook page (https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=17020225 or just search for Dave Rintoul if you are on FB). And I will be selling 2020 calendars with bird pics on LuLu later in the year; calendars make lovely gifts! Finally, framed prints of some of my images are sold by a local art gallery here, see some of those at https://snwgallery.com/search-works.php?keyword=rintoul

    Alternatively, if you see an image that you want to own, send me a message (via DM on Twitter, Messenger on FB, or directly at grosbeak57 at gmail dot com. I’d be happy to work with you, as I have with other Juicers, to get a print of proper size and proportion in your hands.

  11. 11
    Miss Bianca says:

    I can’t believe you’re making me want to visit Kansas!

  12. 12
    chris says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Nope, I’ve had the same problem all week as stackpathcdn has been doing its worst. I have to see the pics on my android phone because they don’t show on Linux/Chrome.

    @Albatrossity: Fantastic pictures!

    If you ever come downeast you can check in with Mark at Cape Sable Birding to pick a good time. Cape Sable is amazing during migration season.

  13. 13
    rikyrah says:


    the pictures are so clear….love them

  14. 14
    trollhattan says:

    Those are top-flight bird pics! [boy, I crack myself up] I’m hopeless for birding and appreciate the time and craft, and more time that go into shots this good.

    Thanks for sharing!

  15. 15
    J R in WV says:

    I’m running Ubuntu and Firefox, and the photos here show up OK for me.

    But the tweets … I have to click on them and open them in order to see anything, which is OK by me. There’s a reason I don’t use Twitter except to see things linked to here. Facebook even less so. Much less so.

  16. 16
    Mohagan says:

    Wonderful pictures!! Thank you so much.

Comments are closed.