Thursday, December 25, 2008

Season's Greetings From The Snowbirds!

click to play
It's been quite a while since I've had a chance to really see what's going on at my feeders. It's dark when I go to work and dark when I get home on weekdays. On the weekend, I'm out birding somewhere while the birds are most active at the feeders. Last weekend, we had a substantial snowstorm. I wasn't excited about all the shoveling but it was nice to watch the backyard birds for a change. Yeah Yeah-I know nobody likes starlings but they do have that just snowed on look don't they?
One of my favorite winter visitors at the peanut feeders are the Carolina Wrens. We've had two of them visiting our feeders this winter. This one looks like it's frowning. Maybe he could get a starring role in "Grumpy Old Wren"!
Wrens have such quick, jerky, movements that make them fun to watch. I'm always compelled to take a look at them through binoculars. They have such interesting fieldmarks with their white eyebrow, curved bill, and cocked up little tail. The two wrens in my yard have been working as a tag team, calling back and forth to each other. "Hey Caroline-There's a fresh batch of peanuts over here"!
Blue Jays are underrated if you ask me. It took a moment to stop and appreciate the bold facial markings of this jay.
I don't think any bird appreciates the peanuts I put out more than the Tufted Titmouse.
click to play
I captured a short segment of a Red-bellied Woodpecker at the suet. The starlings that showed up couldn't seem to get along with each other as usual.
The Downy Woodpecker is another bird that we take for granted just because they're usually the most common woodpeckers at the feeders. Still a nice bird though.
click to play
This Northern Flicker drove me crazy. I saw it on the suet and was so impressed by the bright yellow coloring on it's underside that I set up my camera on a tripod and constructed a blind out of cardboard to take photos from my breezeway. I am convinced that this flicker knew what I was up to. Every time I attempted to get the flickers photo, it flew off. If I left the house, it came back. My wife, Joan, would call me on my cell phone to give me updates. The best I could do was get this video of Mr. Flicker giving me that suspicious look as it perched on the top of the shepherd hook. I've got a couple of days off and I'm looking forward to catching up on reading all of your blogs.
Merry Christmas And Happy Holidays To Everyone!


Cherie/ Butterfly Dreamer said...

I love these pictures . i filled all my feeders yesterday and saw a cardinal eating from one. So lovely.

Tom said...

Hi Larry, You have a great assortment of feathered friends in your backyard. The wrens must be a lot of fun to watch. Unfortunately we don't get to see them at this elevation. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Mary C said...

Loved your videos, Larry. I hope you and your family had a joyous Christmas.

Mary said...

It's great to see my favorite birds - you know, I think Starlings are very pretty...although... That video of the squabble made me laugh. So typical!

Watching the snow fall was nice, Larry. Thanks. And I also enjoyed the background piano.


RuthieJ said...

Wow, you've got some great birds in your backyard Larry. Was that a white-throated sparrow in the first video?
I loved seeing all the videos and your bluejay too.
Belated Merry Christmas to you also.

Larry said...

Cherie/Buttefly Dreamer-I especially enjoy seeing Cardinals in the winter when the trees are bare. They seem to really stand out when there is snow.

Tom-But you do get some birds that we don't get at this lower elevations-yes-wrens are fun to watch and listen to.

Mary C.-Thanks-I did have a nice Christmas.

Mary-Those starlings do like to fight.-Glad you liked the background piano by Vive Guaraldi Trio(Charlie Brown).

Ruthiej-thanks-yes it is a White-throated Sparrow with juncos around.-

Ruth said...

Your videos are very good and I like the music. I haven't starlings at my feeders, thank goodness! The House Sparrows are bad enough. Hope your holidays were special.

Patrice said...

Happy New Year Larry! Wishing you many bird sightings in 2009...

A New England Life said...

I do love the speckles of a Starling but as your video showed, they have a nasty side.

I've never tried the peanuts but you are convincing me that I need to do just that! You are right, Bluejays are underrated. Their coloring is spectacular.

We had a Flicker as well, a couple weeks ago, but I haven't seen it since we had all the snow. Hopefully it's just that I've been busy and it's still around. They do seem very sensative to people though, as do most woodpeckers.


Kathie Brown said...

Merry Christmas and Happy New year, Larry! I hope to see you over at Sycamore Canyon soon. Gus and I visited Bosque Del Apache Wildlife Refuge over Christmas and hope to post photos and story soon. I love your videos of the birds at the feeder and the nice, soft music. That is one smart and tricky flicker you have there! I mostly get the gilded flicker here, which has a red mustache and no red spot on the nape. We also get the red-shafted flicker in the more forested areas. It's been awhile since I've seen a yellow-shafted flicker. This was certainly a peaceful post. I could watch that first video over and over.