Thursday, December 21, 2006

This Morning's Visitors

Snow brings great bird-watching, as an assortment--and quantity--of birds flock to the feeders. As most of the country knows by now, we've been getting dumped on! [This storm is now labeled "Storm 3" for purposes of keeping track.] This morning hundreds of birds--mostly Juncos, Sparrows, and Finches--have been coming by for treats. There are also a few Starlings, Towhees, Crows, Magpies, and of course the Scrub Jays.


When I put out suet earlier this week, I was hoping it would help out the woodpeckers and flickers. Instead, this little Downy Woodpecker decided to go for the thistle seed!

Three Juncos wait their turn at the thistle feeder, while the Downy gets his fill.

The Husband cleared a spot on the porch to put some seed where it wouldn't get immediately buried in snow. When all the little birds disappeared, we knew Artemis, or her new fellow hawk, was in the area. I saw the swoop, and looked out windows trying to spot her/him.


I was scanning too far afield, and in the trees. Finally, I spotted him, just a few feet from the bedroom window (note the indoor potted plant), with an unlucky Starling for breakfast, right on top of the birdseed just put out for the little ones. The spots mark "him" as Speck, our new local Sharp-shinned Hawk. He soon took off with his meal, so I never got a better shot.

When I put out suet, it attracts Black-billed Magpies. So here's a small challenge for you. How many pie-birds in this picture? Answer will be posted tomorrow. (Remember, you can click to enlarge the photo!)

2 comments:

Dave said...

Welcome back! Cat Lady said just yesterday that you had some new posts.

I count 11, but I'm guessing I'm half a dozen short.

We set out three round balls full of sunflower seed in a small lilac. (They were meant to look like Christmas decorations, in the spirit of a Currier and Ives print.) Their potential charm was somewhat diluted by the six squirrels who immediately moved in, turning the smallish bush into a writhing mass of fur out of Hieronymous Bosch.

Sandy said...

These are great photos. I have never seen a scrub jay or a magpie in real life. In a few years we will be retiring to New Mexico, so hope to then.

Are you getting all that snow this week?