Still, it was a lovely day for yard birding. Determined to get out there and find some birds despite the heat, I moved my lawn chair to the shade under a cedar elm and waited to see what would show up at the water drippers.
Butterflies are still a star attraction in the yard. Yesterday morning I took a photo of this Pipevine Swallowtail visiting a milkweed vine.
Less than a minute after I took the photo above, a Couch's Kingbird alit on a wire overhead. I quickly focused my binocs on his prize. A closer look let me know what he was having for breakfast.
The yard is filled with drama, even early in the morning. Some of its inhabitants are not as lucky as others. I don't know why this kingbird is not repelled by the reported bitter taste of the butterfly, but if you click to enlarge the picture, you can see that it is indeed the swallowtail. I missed a picture of the capture by a few seconds--but the before-and-after photos tell the story.
A cool front this morning changed the wind from south to north and brought in relief from humidity. Today's temperature was a "cool" 95. It's still hot but our autumn birds seem to pay more attention to the calendar than the thermometer. Migration has indeed started.