Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Birds of a feather

Judy over at The Road to Here has a guest post by Suzie Gilbert who wrote a book about birds called Flyaway. She has a question and answer thing going on with her, and I asked Suzie to mention how she feels about feeding birds, since I am still wondering about the propriety of my feeding of the wild birds. If you want to ask some questions about birds, please head on over there and join in.

This goldfinch (click to enlarge) has changed colors and is now in his yellow breeding feathers. I've watched the male goldfinch change from dull yellowish-brown to this color (and he will be even brighter as the weeks go by). I have quite a few goldfinch at my upside-down feeder and the nyjer sock, but I also have chickaees who head over to the suet feeder or to the black oil sunflowers. They continue to amaze me, they are so bold and cheeky.

I swear this guy is posing for me. He is just the cutest thing. He yells at me when I forget to shake a few seeds onto the tray for his pleasure. The chickadees have also begun their spring two-note song that sounds to me like, "pick me, pick me." Then there are the raptors that are attracted to my feeders, not for the food, but for the well-fed little birdies like these! My juvenile Cooper's Hawk has been joined by a mature Sharp-Shinned Hawk, much smaller (about the size of a pigeon). This is not a great picture, but it shows his red eyes and his coloring.

And lastly, for those of you who love eagles, I've been watching the hatching of the Hornby Island eagles' nest. There are two eggs, and Mom and Dad have been watching over them. There are two cameras, a closeup that is amazing, and one a bit farther away. Last year I watched Mom and Dad Eagle in another nest feed three eaglets and watched them fledge. This one is sponsored by Wild Earth TV in British Columbia. The link to the cameras and the chat room is available here. The website also has some short segments on the sidebar showing the parents turning the eggs and repositioning them. Enjoy!


  1. I have never seen those birds here in Hawaii. Lots of birds fly into my patio to eat left over cat food, but I don't know all of their names. I really should buy a good bird book.

  2. Birds are something that I can spend hours watching, as is evidenced by my Blog. the goldfinches are so sweet and one of my all time fav's.

  3. I never get tired of watching the birds. They have such unique personalities. It is a great hobby. My chickadees have left for the season. They only come out of the woods during the winter around here. I will miss them and their sweet call.

  4. I like the pictures of your birds. The goldfinch colors are intense.

  5. We went to San Antonio, Texas for a few days. While there I saw many birds making quite a lot of noise and finally found out they were called Grackle I think. I had not seen them in my back yard. I have to spend a lot of time reading all my friends’ blogs and yours is always one on top of my list. I have so many posts to read that I don’t even think I’ll have time to publish a post this week. I took a note of that Musicophilia Book. Also I always try to avoid high fructose corn syrup since my younger daughter, who is in the medical field, told me how bad it was. She said that is why there are so many diabetics in this country, even children. As for water my husband who was in the environment field for years always said that lack of pure water would be worst in the long run than any other problems – but when he made recommendations to the State of Georgia, they thought he was an extremist. Now the places he said would be flooded are, and the places without water get restrictions. Thanks for coming to my blog and leaving a message, I appreciate it very much.

  6. Really fun watching the eagles. I saved the site to my menu bar so I can continue to drop in on them.

    You really have an active feeder.

  7. Our Chickadees are changing their calls too..and getting louder. I am eagerly awaiting the Gold Finches. We had a few Purple Finches one day..scouts maybe! No Robins yet:(

  8. Back again...

    The post you couldn't read.

    I thought it was important to teach my children some simple skills so they might not starve to death on an island surrounded by chickens.

    It is about killing and cleaning or dressing chickens.

    The content is about that and has all the details.

  9. The goldfinch is so pretty, they are getting their color back I see. I think that is a great shot of the hawk, it's not one I have seen here. My female red tail is on my header at the moment.

    Thanks for the shout on Suzie's post, she is a great lady and I look forward to more visits from her in the future. Have you seen that she has answered your question in the comments? She will be checking in on the post for a day or two.

  10. purty birds!!!

    I just noticed the gorgeous mountain peaks on your backdrop here... nice! :o)

  11. My dad use to have bird feeders when he was living. He loved to watch the birds!!


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