October = 3 Bird Species…

October = 3 Bird Species…

So, the birds have been migrating through my area, but I haven’t seen too many of them…

Each season has its challenges when it comes to birding, the fall is full of birds heading south, but the trees are still full of leaves and the birds are quiet, they aren’t singing to attract a mate…

That being said, it is still great to get outside and enjoy walking through the woods even if you don’t find any new species!

So far for the month of October I did manage to find 3 new species that I hadn’t seen yet this year…

Here is the first one. Not the greatest photo, due to the leaves and the fact that it is a Warbler (most of them enjoy being high up in the trees)…

It’s the Black-throated Blue Warbler. I know the photo is crappy, but you can see the very bold white wing patch and white belly.

They will move about the leaves, hopping around in one area for minutes at a time, foraging for insects, instead of zipping through the trees like a lot of warblers do. This makes it easier to find them, if you bend your neck back (the warbler neck) and wait to see one up in the trees.

The next bird I saw in October happened to be in the same tree as the Black-throated Blue Warbler, so my neck was killing me by the time I was done watching them!

It was the Red-breasted Nuthatch. I used to see them up in New England all of the time, the are common up there for all seasons. Now down in the Southeast, I only see them every few years if I’m lucky.

They will winter down in the Southeast. Often seen foraging for insects or seeds by going up and down tree trunks and branches.

Here is the latest bird that I saw in October. This one decided to come to my feeder to make it easy on me. 🙂

This is the Pine Siskin. There were 3 of them eating the seeds at my feeder the other day.

They breed up in Alaska and Canada, then winter throughout the US. Their migration is very erratic, some years they come southward in huge numbers, while other years they can be very scarce!

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

Birds, Birds, Birds…

Birds, Birds, Birds…

Here are a few more birds that I’ve seen recently while I’ve been walking through the woods…

These are pretty easy if you want to try to guess what they are.

This is the lovely, lol, Turkey Vulture. They can be found throughout all of the US and Mexico.

Next…

Here’s the Northern Flicker. This one is the Eastern “Yellow-shafted” form. It has bright yellow under its wings and tail. The Western “Red-shafted” form has salmon-pink under its wings and tail.

Here’s the last one…

The Eastern Phoebe. This one was eating berries on the edge of a swamp.

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

Just a few Birds…

Just a few Birds…

It has been getting cooler and that has made it very nice to take more walks in the woods.

I haven’t seen any new bird species lately, even though there are reported sightings of many warblers in the area!

Here are some of the birds that I have seen lately. Try to guess what they are…

This is the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. They will breed up in Canada and winter in southeastern US, but they also go south to Central American and the West Indies.

Guess this bird.

This one might be a bit harder since the photo isn’t that great… But it’s the Red-shouldered Hawk. Most small birds will go silent and still whenever their around.

Last one…

This is the female Summer Tanager. They breed south from New Jersey down and over to Southern California and Northern Mexico. They winter in the tropics.

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

Blue Jay

Blue Jay

Hurray! I finally managed to get a photo of a Blue Jay!!!!

Years ago I used to get lots and lots of Blue Jays eating the seeds on the ground below my bird feeders. Unfortunately, I was not a big birder at that time, so I never took any photos of them…

Lately I realized that I never had many photos of the common birds that I see or hear and the Blue Jay was one of those.

I’ve been trying to get a photo this whole year, I’ve noticed that the Blue Jay seems to stay pretty high up in the trees.

They often have a loud harsh cry, but they also have many other calls, one of them is almost identical to the scream of the Red-shouldered Hawk.

They can be found throughout all of eastern US west to the Central US.

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

Birds…

Birds…

Here are the latest visitors to my feeder.

The Carolina Chickadee and the Northern Cardinal.

The Northern Cardinal is the only red bird with a crest in North America. The female is a lot duller almost tan compared to the male. They don’t migrate, so if you see them in the spring they should be around your area in the winter too.

The Carolina Chickadee is also a permanent resident and will not migrate. They look almost identical to the Black-capped Chickadee and the only true way to properly identify them is by the location of where you see them.

Their range goes up to central New Jersey across the US to Texas and south through the southeast states.

The Black-capped Chickadee’s range is from northern New Jersey across the US to Oregon and north up into most of Canada.

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

Visit to a New Park

Visit to a New Park

Last week we found a new park to go to near our home. Birders had posted seeing several bird species there recently that I hadn’t seen at all this year.

Mostly I was looking for the migrating warblers. I packed my binoculars and camera along with our lunch and some frisbees for disc golf, since there is a course at this park.

We got there, it was a bit hot and humid, but I was excited about seeing some birds!

First thing my husband wants to do is play disc golf! Oh well, I can still find some birds while playing in the woods…

I have my camera in a backpack stuck to my sweaty back, binoculars swinging around my neck as I take each of my shots for all of the 18 holes!

Let’s just say that it wasn’t one of my better games… I did really bad and I never did see any birds…

This week we decided to go over to the park again. This time I told my husband that I would walk through the woods along the course with him, but I was only looking for birds.

That actually worked out better for both of us, I got to look at birds and he was able to have a good game of disc golf without having to wait for me to shoot 2 or 3 shots for every one of his…

I never did see any new species, but I saw a lot of birds. When we got to the 18th hole, up ahead of us I saw a large brown bird fly towards me and land on a branch above my head.

It was a Barred Owl. It’s funny how I don’t know if I had ever seen one in the wild during my whole life and now I not only see one very close as it checks me out during my walk in the woods, but I have them living in my neighborhood and hear them a few times a week.

I tried not to take too many photos of this one since I have way too many photos of the one that keeps flying into my backyard!

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

Squirrel…

Squirrel…

The other day I thought I saw a squirrel that had a weird collar around its neck.

I thought that maybe it had gotten something stuck around its neck and it was not going to be okay…

I’ve been looking for that squirrel for the past couple of days, then today I finally saw it again.

Warning… here is a photo of the squirrel, don’t look if you are squeamish…

Can you see the large lumps on its neck? No, its not wearing Christmas bells or a hideous collar. I looked it up online to see just what the heck is happening to this squirrel…

Turns out there are fluid draining warbles or the botfly that lay their eggs on vegetation around where the squirrels live, then the larval enter the squirrel through its mouth or nose. As the larval grow, their waste eventually cause the swelling and sores.

Soon a grub like warble comes out of the sore and the squirrel will actually heal and usually grows fur again before winter hits…

So for good or for bad, this squirrel will be okay… who knew…

Sorry to have posted this, I hope I didn’t ruin your appetite! I just thought that I would pass along what I learned…

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

More Birds…

More Birds…

Here are a few more birds that I’ve seen at my feeders in my backyard.

Try to guess what species these birds are… let me know how you did.

Here’s the American Goldfinch. This is the male, they have very bright bold colors. In the winter their colors will vary from a yellowish brown to a gray. I’ve seen some that look greenish, the first time I saw that I thought I found a new bird species!

The Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are still around. I’ve had a couple of females all summer long, then a couple of weeks ago I saw a male, but I haven’t seen him in a while.

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!

Birds Outside my Window…

Birds Outside my Window…

I decided to put up my bird feeder a bit early this year, since I can’t do as much birding as I would normally be doing, I thought that I’d see if the birds would start to come back if I offered them some food…

Well I guess “if you build it they will come“ is happening…

I’ve started seeing a few more birds than I had been seeing this past summer. Like the Tufted Titmouse, Carolina Chickadee, Northern Cardinal, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Carolina Wren and Eastern Bluebird. Some are just more of the same, probably the adults with their 1st years that they are still teaching.

I have also seen a few birds that weren’t in my yard at all this summer. Like the American Goldfinch, Summer Tanager, House Finch and Chipping Sparrow.

I am keeping my eye out for migrating birds. Most of the Warblers should be passing through soon and I would really like to see some of them.

Here are some photos of the birds that I have been seeing. Try to guess what they are…

This is the Tufted Titmouse. See how it has a sunflower seed, those are their favorites. They will take one seed at a time and go off and break it open with their bill, then come back for another.

Next…

Here is a House Finch. A couple of weeks ago I saw one with a growth on its bill, but this one looked okay. I haven’t seen any in my yard for a few months, but now they’ve shown up again.

The Carolina Chickadee has been around this summer, but now they are more visible since I’ve put the feeder out.

Remember to stay healthy and stay safe!