Friday, December 21, 2007

Feeder Watcher's

Well, thanks to my wonderful and generous girlfriend, I am now an official FeederWatcher! I am so excited. We are waiting for the packet to come in the mail so that I can gain access with the log in info, not to mention all of the other goodies. Now, not only do I have a completely credible excuse to sit and watch/count the birds but the info that we gather will be used by backyard birders, scientists and ornithologists around the country. That is so incredible and wonderful to me that I cannot put it into words.

Ever since we first started to watch birds, I have felt a sense of community and kinship with a whole new group of people. That feeling grows stronger with each passing day. Some of these people, well okay most, we haven't ever spoken or corresponded with and probably never will, but yet we are all part of something greater than any one of us. We all have something to bring to the table. That is fantastic to me. In my old life, 20 years spent in the restaurant industry, I didn't meet and confer with the "great culinary minds". They didn't call and ask me about a recipe that I have or a new cooking technique. I didn't get emails asking about my experience. But in this new and wonder-filled life, I do correspond with some of the "great birding minds". I speak with other backyard birders and with ornithologists. I do get emails asking me what we're feeding or what types of birds we are seeing. I get kudos for some of my photos from people who have been photographing birds all their life. Me. Lil' ol' me. Someone who, a few years ago, didn't know the difference between a house sparrow and a house finch. It's almost overwhelming to me sometimes. But in the end, it's awesome.

So yes, we are now officially FeederWatcher's and I encourage anyone who is interested in becoming a part of Project FeederWatch to check it out at .

Now, as for how the backyard is going, we are getting all the regulars. Daily visitors include: Purple, House, American and Lesser finches, tons of Pine Siskins, Juncos, Juncos and more Juncos, Spotted Towhee, Black-Capped and Chestnut-Backed Chickadees, Red-Breasted Nuthatch, Yellow-Rumped Warblers, Bushtits, Northern Flickers, Downy Woodpeckers, Golden-Crowned, White-Crowned, House, Song and Fox Sparrows, Scrub and Steller Jays, Cooper's and Sharp-Shinned Hawks and, kind of strange, one lone Am. Robin.

The Robin comes in everyday and feeds on a couple of our Cotoneasters and usually takes a bath. But she (he?) is alone. In the last month I haven't seen another Robin in the yard. I haven't heard any in the neighborhood. Just this single Robin. I'm glad that it visits but I sure would mind a flock to come in, either. It seems healthy and active. I guess it just prefers a quiter existance.

Thanks for reading and have a great birding day.

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