Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Vtsax100
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Vtsax100 »

My birdfeeder stays busy with Chikadees and Tufted Titmouses mostly which is fine with me. They are the cutest little birds. I enjoy watching them snag a seed and flying up to a limb to peck at it. Other regular visitors are Nuthatches, wood peckers, squirrels, and the chipmunks that get the dropped seeds. My hummers left last month.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by bulbul »

I came across a great blue heron during today’s hiking.

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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Until you see one in person, you don't realize how big those birds are in real life.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

bulbul wrote: Fri Nov 27, 2020 1:26 pm I came across a great blue heron during today’s hiking.

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Great photo! I think herons and cranes are so elegant. :happy
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Candor »

LadyGeek wrote: Fri Nov 27, 2020 2:03 pm Until you see one in person, you don't realize how big those birds are in real life.
And quite formidable hunters. I have seen them fend of Bald Eagles who try to steal their catch.
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Had a 2 Jay day today.

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My family of Mexican Jays were at my stock tank, while a Scrub Jay was getting water at the house. I only get Scrub Jay for about a day or two every year, this one has stayed for about 3 weeks.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by whodidntante »

I am skilled at identifying birds. Let me know if my services are needed.
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Re: Had a 2 Jay day today.

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Grasshopper wrote: Fri Nov 27, 2020 4:18 pm My family of Mexican Jays were at my stock tank, while a Scrub Jay was getting water at the house. I only get Scrub Jay for about a day or two every year, this one has stayed for about 3 weeks.
I had to look up Mexican Jays - they look similar to Scrub Jays. I love the blue coloring. :happy

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Mex ... e/70581631
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Recent behind the scenes zoo tour for photographers.
Great Horned Owl
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by LadyGeek »

Nice. I have one of those in my backyard. The hooting is very distinctive. As long as I've lived here, I may have only seen one during the day - and only because I startled him.

I heard one a few weeks ago, but nothing since. The cold weather will sink in later next week, so I'm hoping to hear him again.

Update: Fixed spelling.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by jebmke »

LadyGeek wrote: Fri Nov 27, 2020 6:52 pm Nice. I have one of those in my backyard. The hooting is very distinctive. As long as I've lived here, I may have only seen one during the day - and only because I started him.

I heard one a few weeks ago, but nothing since. The cold weather will sink in later next week, so I'm hoping to hear him again.
We have regulars in our woods behind the marsh. In the late summer, for some reason, one of them drops down in the early evening and runs around the back yard eating something. I caught one in my scope a couple of years ago.

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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Closeup at the lake.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by LadyGeek »

^^^ Good detail and nice control on the depth of field.

The image links to the image file sharing site https://postimages.org/.

You can see the full size image here: https://i.postimg.cc/BQZVJdG3/XZ-DUCK-CLOSEUP.jpg

Update: The depth of field is called Bokeh.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Hubris »

Christmas Bird Count here in Bozeman yesterday, the highlight for our section was a juvenile Tundra Swan, 2nd one reported on the count in 82 years!
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by livesoft »

Hubris wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 7:23 pm Christmas Bird Count here in Bozeman yesterday, the highlight for our section was a juvenile Tundra Swan, 2nd one reported on the count in 82 years!
A nice catch!

I saw a California condor the other day. It flew so close that I was stunned and didn't get a photo.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JMacDonald »

How did these Black Swans end up on Bolsa Chica State Beach in Southern California. Strange!
I took this picture two days ago.

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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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A cormorant spreading wings to dry up after diving

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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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LadyGeek wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 7:01 pm ^^^ Good detail and nice control on the depth of field.

The image links to the image file sharing site https://postimages.org/.

You can see the full size image here: https://i.postimg.cc/BQZVJdG3/XZ-DUCK-CLOSEUP.jpg
super mahalo!
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

Audubon posted their 2020 photography winners. Some of you may enjoy these. I thought the hummingbird photo was pretty amazing:

https://www.audubon.org/magazine/summer ... ds-winners
Last edited by JAZZISCOOL on Mon Dec 21, 2020 8:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by heyyou »

ID help is needed:
Whitey is the sole exotic in the mixed flock of mostly juncos and a few house finches who are feeding on the scattered milo and sunflower seeds. Whitey has a white head and cape that goes lower on the back than the black on the juncos, and lower and wider than the juncos' black bib in front. Juncos have light colored bills. Whitey has a black bill and a narrow black patch maybe centered near the lower forehead. When facing me and feeding (a blur of quick pecking), the impression is that the black is on the face, but side views don't confirm that. Whitey has a thin wing bar of white amongst the mixed, brown theme of the folded, outer wing feathers.

I'm near the center of Arizona at 4800' elevation in rugged topography where the juniper and pinyon pine brush dominate, but the Ponderosa pines start at 5000' elevation, just a few miles away. Whitey first appeared a week ago, on the day ahead of the first wet storm of the winter. I assume that Whitey is a refugee from summer forest fires, a few states further north. Whitey and the dense flock of 20-30 juncos are at the feeder within the first hour after sunrise, but later in the day, the fewer feeding juncos do not move as a flock, and Whitey is not seen, but has been sighted on 5 of 7 recent mornings when the temperature is just starting to warm to above freezing.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

heyyou wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 9:32 pm ID help is needed:
Whitey is the sole exotic in the mixed flock of mostly juncos and a few house finches who are feeding on the scattered milo and sunflower seeds. Whitey has a white head and cape that goes lower on the back than the black on the juncos, and lower and wider than the juncos' black bib in front. Juncos have light colored bills. Whitey has a black bill and a narrow black patch maybe centered near the lower forehead. When facing me and feeding (a blur of quick pecking), the impression is that the black is on the face, but side views don't confirm that. Whitey has a thin wing bar of white amongst the mixed, brown theme of the folded, outer wing feathers.

I'm near the center of Arizona at 4800' elevation in rugged topography where the juniper and pinyon pine brush dominate, but the Ponderosa pines start at 5000' elevation, just a few miles away. Whitey first appeared a week ago, on the day ahead of the first wet storm of the winter. I assume that Whitey is a refugee from summer forest fires, a few states further north. Whitey and the dense flock of 20-30 juncos are at the feeder within the first hour after sunrise, but later in the day, the fewer feeding juncos do not move as a flock, and Whitey is not seen, but has been sighted on 5 of 7 recent mornings when the temperature is just starting to warm to above freezing.
You might try a bird ID app on your phone called Merlin (Cornell University). You input certain attributes of the bird and it gives you possible species. I'm not sure it will work for an "exotic" but worth a try. There is also a photo ID option but I haven't tried that yet. :happy
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by One Ping »

We've been having fun watching our winter 'charm' of Anna's hummingbirds. We have about 5 or 6 that over-winter in our backyard. We live in an area into which, over the last several decades, they have expanded their over-wintering range. It's an interesting sight to see hummingbirds sitting on snow-covered evergreen branches. We've also built feeder heaters to ensure their food stays liquid and available to them for their all-important first feeding in the morning after spending the previous below-freezing night in torpor.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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JAZZISCOOL wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 8:47 pm Audubon posted their 2020 photography winners. Some of you may enjoy these. I thought the hummingbird photo was pretty amazing:

https://www.audubon.org/magazine/summer ... ds-winners
Shared the link with DW. These pictures are amazing!
Thanks for posting this.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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One Ping wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 3:45 pm We've been having fun watching our winter 'charm' of Anna's hummingbirds. We have about 5 or 6 that over-winter in our backyard. We live in an area into which, over the last several decades, they have expanded their over-wintering range. It's an interesting sight to see hummingbirds sitting on snow-covered evergreen branches. We've also built feeder heaters to ensure their food stays liquid and available to them for their all-important first feeding in the morning after spending the previous below-freezing night in torpor.
Interesting post about your over-wintering hummingbirds. I did not know there were hummingbird feeder heaters. We are in NC and our ruby-throated hummers left some time ago. We do have a heated birdbath even though most days it's not needed.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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agbp wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 12:16 pm Interesting post about your over-wintering hummingbirds. I did not know there were hummingbird feeder heaters. We are in NC and our ruby-throated hummers left some time ago. We do have a heated birdbath even though most days it's not needed.
RTHBs clear out of the east coast in the fall. Oddly, every once in a while an odd HB species shows up on the east coast in late fall early winter. We have seen Rufous and Calliope HBs in MD as late as January. I think they get blown over here by mistake. If they can find shelter and food they will hunker down until they have a chance to head south.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Image

It's wintertime here in East TN - time for the Hermit Thrush to come grace our yard once more.


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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by jebmke »

We get those around here. Saw one on the Christmas Bird Count on Sunday; at a distance they have the same profile as a wren so you have to look carefully some times.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

agbp wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 12:16 pm
One Ping wrote: Mon Dec 21, 2020 3:45 pm We've been having fun watching our winter 'charm' of Anna's hummingbirds. We have about 5 or 6 that over-winter in our backyard. We live in an area into which, over the last several decades, they have expanded their over-wintering range. It's an interesting sight to see hummingbirds sitting on snow-covered evergreen branches. We've also built feeder heaters to ensure their food stays liquid and available to them for their all-important first feeding in the morning after spending the previous below-freezing night in torpor.
Interesting post about your over-wintering hummingbirds. I did not know there were hummingbird feeder heaters. We are in NC and our ruby-throated hummers left some time ago. We do have a heated birdbath even though most days it's not needed.
I didn't know that either about hummers sticking around with snow. They left here around September. They are so cheerful to watch. :happy
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Vtsax100 »

There was a big flock of wild turkeys hanging out under my bird feeder this morning. About ten of them. The neighbors cat wasn’t quite sure what to think. Does this count as bird watching? :happy
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Yesterday, I was out bird watching in some wetlands and noticed a bird flying that must've picked up a piece of white trash and was flying strongly away with it. Then I noticed that it had a white tail, too. Then, I thought, "Wow! My eyes are really getting bad! It's a bald eagle."
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

livesoft wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 2:48 pm Yesterday, I was out bird watching in some wetlands and noticed a bird flying that must've picked up a piece of white trash and was flying strongly away with it. Then I noticed that it had a white tail, too. Then, I thought, "Wow! My eyes are really getting bad! It's a bald eagle."
LOL :beer
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JMacDonald wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 7:47 pm How did these Black Swans end up on Bolsa Chica State Beach in Southern California. Strange!
I took this picture two days ago.

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Beautiful birds. Thanks for sharing!
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

Dottie57 wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 4:05 pm
JMacDonald wrote: Sun Dec 20, 2020 7:47 pm How did these Black Swans end up on Bolsa Chica State Beach in Southern California. Strange!
I took this picture two days ago.

Image
Beautiful birds. Thanks for sharing!
I enjoyed these as well. Did a little digging and couldn't see any native black swans in the US but did see a reference to one mostly in Australia although they've been spotted in Florida and NC:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_swan

Sometimes "exotics" escape from zoos or private collections, I read.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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TnGuy wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 12:45 pm Image

It's wintertime here in East TN - time for the Hermit Thrush to come grace our yard once more.


David
Such detail in this lovely little bird.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by mike@jb »

Sorry for the lack of pictures - I’ll be prepared next time.
The ponds here in North Florida are full of wintering wading birds.
Today I saw several Wood Storks and Great Egrets in a small neighborhood pond.
Another golf course pond had over 50 Great Egrets.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

mike@jb wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 5:43 pm Sorry for the lack of pictures - I’ll be prepared next time.
The ponds here in North Florida are full of wintering wading birds.
Today I saw several Wood Storks and Great Egrets in a small neighborhood pond.
Another golf course pond had over 50 Great Egrets.
Cool! I didn't know what a Wood Stork looked like but I do now! Very interesting bird.

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Woo ... r/65616631
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by health teacher »

I had hundreds, maybe even over 1000 birds in my front yard today. It was one of the coolest nature phenomenons I've witnessed. The sound of the massive group of birds flying and landing almost in unison was incredible.

I'm assuming they were migrating. They looked like barn swallows or chimney swift's, but I don't think that's what they were. I didn't get a close up pic, but was able to record some of it on my phone.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Wenonah »

Last week I saw 127 Hooded mergansers fly in from Puget Sound on to a freshwater pond right before sunset...a few at a time. Then the males were displaying for the females. Sent my friend a week later and she saw four! Last week I saw a northern bob white which is not a regular here in the PNW.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Thought I seen a Dodo bird in my yard. I was consuming Christmas ales at the time. :beer
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

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Image

One bird that we get in our yard every winter is the Brown Creeper (though, I have yet to see one so far). It summers in the higher elevations of the Great Smoky Mountains, moving down to the Tennessee Valley and surrounding areas for the winter. The Brown Creeper has a wonderful habit of 'working a tree upwards' by clinging to the tree and probing the bark for bark insects as it steadily climbs. Then, when it's time to move on to the next tree it always flies to a low spot on the tree trunk to begin the process of working back up the tree once more - up-and-down, up-and-down ... it's a good identifying behavior.


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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

TnGuy wrote: Thu Dec 24, 2020 1:30 pm Image

One bird that we get in our yard every winter is the Brown Creeper (though, I have yet to see one so far). It summers in the higher elevations of the Great Smoky Mountains, moving down to the Tennessee Valley and surrounding areas for the winter. The Brown Creeper has a wonderful habit of 'working a tree upwards' by clinging to the tree and probing the bark for bark insects as it steadily climbs. Then, when it's time to move on to the next tree it always flies to a low spot on the tree trunk to begin the process of working back up the tree once more - up-and-down, up-and-down ... it's a good identifying behavior.


David
Nice photo! I love their curved beak - looks perfect for insects.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by agbp »

Vtsax100 wrote: Tue Dec 22, 2020 2:40 pm There was a big flock of wild turkeys hanging out under my bird feeder this morning. About ten of them. The neighbors cat wasn’t quite sure what to think. Does this count as bird watching? :happy
Sure, why not? When we lived in western PA, we enjoyed seeing wild turkeys behind our house rummaging through the leaves.

ETA: I love the great photos people have been posting. Keep 'em coming!
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Candor »

A recent eagle with lunch.

Image
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Faith20879 »

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https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/d/13m ... AyQ8GoGoT9

What bird is this? Mid-Atlantic, MD.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by agbp »

Faith20879 wrote: Fri Dec 25, 2020 1:43 pm Image
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/d/13m ... AyQ8GoGoT9

What bird is this? Mid-Atlantic, MD.
I'm no expert, but it looks like a Carolina Chickadee to me. We have plenty of them here in NC.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by LadyGeek »

Black-capped Chickadee. I see them occasionally in my feeders (Philly area). From the Audobon guide:

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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

Candor wrote: Fri Dec 25, 2020 12:50 pm A recent eagle with lunch.

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Great photo! :beer
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JAZZISCOOL »

LadyGeek wrote: Fri Dec 25, 2020 2:03 pm Black-capped Chickadee. I see them occasionally in my feeders (Philly area). From the Audobon guide:

Image
We get a lot of these and I never get tired of them. So cute!

I've seen several large flocks of Bush Tits lately at the suet feeders which are also fun to watch.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by Vtsax100 »

LadyGeek wrote: Fri Dec 25, 2020 2:03 pm Black-capped Chickadee. I see them occasionally in my feeders (Philly area). From the Audobon guide:

Image

I love these little guys. They are almost my favorite. They always are waiting out in the bushes when I take seed out in the mornings. I love watching them grab a sunflower seed and go up on a limb with it. They hold it between their feet and the limb and start pecking it.

Sadly I had a failed nest last spring. I had been watching them from the start and one day noticed I hadn’t seen the parents for a while. I looked in the box and all the babies were dead. It broke my heart.
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Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Post by JWooden10 »

Today’s relaxing day around the house allowed for some bird watching out the window. Saw several black-capped chickadee, Carolina wren, junco, hairy woodpecker, and cardinals.
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