Thursday, March 13, 2014

Backyard Birds

The sun is shining now, but this morning was yet another cold, wintry storm with snow squalls and high winds.  As a result, there was a ton of bird activity in the yard today, and I was content to stay in, stay warm,  and just enjoy the views off my deck.

I thought I had been noticing a brightening of the male American Goldfinches into their breeding plumage, and today, I was able to confirm it with certainty.   I'm glad to know it was not purely wishful thinking!  The spring molt is definitely underway.

Dark-Eyed Junco 
(doing his best imitation of a flamingo by standing on one leg)

I shouldn't joke about the poor Junco.  I saw it again later, and it could not put weight down on that leg for very long before it would lift it up again and just use its other leg.  It must have an injury and that will certainly jeopardize its ability to survive.

And my beloved bluebirds came back again today.  They are so beautiful!!!  

 Cute little bluebird behind!

Quite a few Tufted Titmice flew in to feed on the bread crumbs.  

The cutest one was having a "bad feather" day.  This made me curious about Titmice molting habits, so I looked it up, but Tufted Titmice do not have a spring molt, so what is going on here?  I wonder if it had a near miss with a predator?  Or was today's wildly whipping wind enough to blow a feather out of position this way?

 A couple more molting goldfinches were out under the sunflower feeder.

A more unusual visitor to my seed feeder was the above Red-Bellied Woodpecker.

In case you were wondering, neither my husband nor my son share my interest in birding.  There are two other birdwatchers in my house, but they are restricted to watching "Bird TV" through the window and do not go outside.

Species seen:
  1. American Goldfinch
  2. Black-Capped Chickadee
  3. Blue Jay
  4. Carolina Wren
  5. Dark-Eyed Junco
  6. Downy Woodpecker
  7. Eastern Bluebird
  8. European Starling
  9. House Finch
  10. Mourning Dove
  11. Northern Cardinal
  12. Red-Bellied Woodpecker
  13. Song Sparrow
  14. White-Breasted Nuthatch

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