Friday, April 19, 2013

Birds in your backyard

If you have followed my saga and blog on the birdfeeder, you will recall feeding the birds has not been an exclusive "easy" task but I have made progress.

My little Chickadee, actually there are several little chickadees but they were the first constant at my feeder once we were able to hold the squirrels at bay from devouring all the seed in 10 minutes. From what I have observed they are the nervous or very cautious type.  They dart in, first to the tree branch and survey the area.  They remind me of the secret service looking all around the crowd for trouble. Once at the feeder they grab a seed and eat back on the branch.  Initially I had chickadees a plenty maybe six or so but now numbers seem to be dwindling.  I have seen two at the most at the same time recently.

Turfted Titmouse seems to be closely associated with the chickadee, they hang together on the branches and at the birdfeeder.  I have seen two at the most of this bird.  It is also a quick feed, in and out.

Junco's initially were what I call bottom feeders and are now my greatest in number 5-6 juncos swoop in at a time and there is one of them that has one leg.  We call him Ahab. Ahab is a frequent visitor and a bottom feeder.  I think he would struggle to hold on to the bird feeder and eat.  He does fine hopping around on the deck.

Finch frenzy, as I call it, typically consists of two yellow finches eating together at the feeder for it seems like hours and no one else is getting in there during there scheduled reservation slot.  They can put away some food and still hold that trim figure. No eating like a bird for them.  I just wonder where they put it.

Nuthatch is what I call one of my extra ordinary birds.  Without a doubt, he or she is different from all the other birds and quick.  I am not sure if it is a regular at my restaurant or not but I don't see this bird everyday, so it is a treat for me when I do.

House finch was identified by me incorrectly at first. I thought I had a siskin here.  This house finch and what I now believe is also a house finch below are a definite team.  I also think they are independent contractors for the squirrels and all the bottom feeders.  They also bogart the feeder and make a mess when they eat spilling the feed all over the place much to the delight of the bottom feeders, juncos, cardinals and mourning doves.  Lately the red headed finch has been freaking me out. Even though he is a little guy/gal, I see dinosaur like no other in this bird.


This chickadee orange breast is what I think it is, is another extra ordinary one.  I don't see it often but when I do, I get excited.  Always the unusual sparks our attention more then the regular visitor.

Woodpecker at first had me miffed because it really doesn't look anything like the Woody Woodpecker cartoon I grew up with but every bird book and every google search I do, I can't deny that this is a woodpecker.  Now if it is a hairy one or I downy, I couldn't tell you but I know I have at least two in my backyard, one has red on the top of his head and the other does not. Believe it or not woodpeckers are common in this area but to me it is still special every time I see one.  It must be the Looney Tunes in my past.

No red on this head and compare the size in the following woodpecker picture.

This guy/gal without a doubt has won the title of BIG BIRD this week.  I call him Woodpecker on steroids.  Its a big one for my little feeder. I think it is magnificent!

Northern Cardinal Adult Female

Northern Cardinal Adult Male

White Throated Sparrow looks like a baby owl to me but it is much too small to be. He's got the look, without a doubt.

and still suffering from an identify crisis is the squirrel.

As the season changes I am starting to notice different birds.  These are the winter birds and squirrel.

Sources: All About Birds (a thorough website with sights and sounds)
The Birdfeeder (A Christmas present from my sister-in-law, Linda).
The Sibley Guide to Birds (a Christmas present from my son, David)

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