Sunday, May 17, 2015

This is for the Birds

The birds are migrating through and the birding has been phenomenal!!!

Since Colleen can no longer feed the birds around the visitor center (the seeds bring mice), I asked if I could borrow a shepherd's hook along with a couple of feeders to bring down to our place. We don't feed the birds for the same reason...but I could not resist. We will keep a small bag of seed inside to keep this going while we are here. One sure way of getting photos of some amazing birds like this beautiful male Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

I was happy to pull this shot off. I have never seen underneath the wing before. Where his color is pink, the females is yellow. Sure, it shows this in the bird book, but I have never seen it before. But then, we are not in a place to see this bird that often.

So, we put the feeders up and brought in the birds!!! 

American Goldfinches joined in.

The Pine Siskins flew in and took over. Notice the yellow tinge in the wing and heavy streaking on the body.

Then House Finches came in to get their share.

Here is the Downy Woodpecker and notice below his larger "cousin," and compare sizes.

He is on the same feeder. These two are hard to tell apart in the field. This is the Hairy Woodpecker. Larger in size and longer bill sets these two apart. Also their foraging habits are different.

I really needed this...the birding fever is BACK. It has been a while since we have been in a really birdie place, and I became very lax.

Our yard count is up to 38, with total count of 102. The waterfowl has been just as rewarding. Our only life bird is the Sharp-tailed Grouse. With our life list being over 700, it gets harder and harder to add to it.

This was our first glimpse of the grouse when we took a trip to Arrowwood  NWR just south of where we are located. It was raining and the shot was taken through
the window (poor quality) plus the fact I was a little excited. We stopped at the lek where we saw another eight of displaying though!!!

We are up to 11 warblers flying through our front yard. The Northern Waterthrush was feeding in the yard...I thought they were always supposed to be near water!!!

Yesterday, as we were leaving, just past the visitor center, I noticed a Red-headed Woodpecker. I immediately called Colleen to let her know about it so she could come see it (she has never seen one). It is listed as rare here??? We talked about revising the list as this is not the only one listed this way that we have seen.

We have been able to study the Clay-colored Sparrow feeding below the feeder. This is one sparrow to get to know better.  

I thought I should include the female grosbeak.

Your comments keep me going...thanks and you know who you are!!!

Until next time...


  1. I'm not sure I've ever seen a sharp-tailed grouse. The grosbeaks are pretty to look at, but sure hard to handle getting them out of a mist net. You could almost lose a finger if that big beak gets a hold of you!

  2. I seen several grouse species but not the sharpie... well done

  3. How exciting to see all those birds. We haven't been in a good birding place since Santa Ana and I really miss it. Even if I'm not a very knowledgeable birder.