Thursday, February 28, 2008

Gotta love the birds!

Well, here it is, the latter part of February at the yard seems to be in another one of it's transitions. The Pine Siskins have mostly gone. We are down to 10-15 a day now. The Juncos aren't nearly as thick as they once were. We're still getting them but not in the incredible numbers we were just a month ago. The American Robins are outnumbering everything else. We have seen, over the last few days, flocks of hundreds of Robins. It's really neat to see them back in such force.

Flowers and trees are starting to bud and bloom. A lot of birds are flying through the yard with nesting material in their bills. New calls and behavior from the Juncos and Chickadees let us know that mating season must be getting close. The Northern Flickers aren't in the yard nearly as much, either. They must be building nests. There is one Flicker who is in the yard all the time and seems to be searching for a home, but as of yet, he hasn't gone to the nest box we put up for him. The Song Sparrows seem to have their spots all picked out!
There are a few new sounds in the yard that we haven't identified, as well. Hopefully some new visitors! Here are some pics from this week and we wish you all good birding!

You can't see me!

Do I have something on my lip?

Look ma, I'm a Cedar Waxwing!!

Lots and lots of Lesser Goldfinches

the Crocus are blooming all over the yard!

This one is still waking up

Robins o' plenty!

Always on the lookout for a better home. And in this market...sheesh!

Song Sparrow doing his "thing"

We've been seeing a lot more House Finches lately.

Always the acrobat!

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Monday, February 25, 2008

Backyard happenings

Hello all! We hope everyone is having a great start to their week. Here are some photos and descriptions of the goings on in our backyard. Hope you enjoy!

The female Anna's is starting to get very chunky! We are sure that she has a couple of eggs in that tiny belly of hers. Very exciting!

The male Anna's continues to tell anyone who will listen, that this is HIS yard!

Starlings are telling anyone who will listen that THEY own every nest box in the yard. Here is one of them on the Flicker box. We have since filled it with wood shavings and the Starlings don't seem to care for it anymore.

The squirrels continue to eat everything in sight. We are done with trying to keep these little buggers out of the feeders.

We are starting to get more Jays in the yard and I am using them to desperately try to work on my birds in flight shots.
The Scrub Jays continue to take as much as possible (usually 3 peanuts).

The Ruby-Crowned Kinglet continues to make us laugh with his "googley eyes"!
The House Sparrows are checking out all of the nest boxes in the yard (we have 8). We were hoping for a Chickadee or Red-Breasted Nuthatch family but, we'll see.

This was the House Sparrows' nest last year. The house produced 5 broods! We know a lot of people don't care for the House Sparrows but they really are pretty and fun birds to watch.

The Northern Flicker is checking out the House Sparrows home, even though we put up a flicker house. That would be so cool to have a Flicker family in the yard!
The Cooper's (and Sharp-Shinned) continue to stop by the yard multiple times a day.

Yet another attempt to get one of these guys in flight. They move SO fast!

The Bushtits are still eating with their hands! What uncooth little guys they are (but, oh so cute)!

All as she would have to do is ask and we would give her a fork! Sheesh!

And the Townsend's Warbler continues to be one of the most beautiful and striking birds in the yard!
Good birding to all!

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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Photos from last week

First off, we would like to thank everyone who visits our blog! We hope you all enjoy the blog and the photos. If you could, please let us know you stopped by.

The Great Backyard Bird Count is over (you can still turn in your counts here until March 1st) and it looks like the best year for, not only Portland, but all of Oregon as well! Portland has turned in over 200 checklists, so far! That's the first time Portland has turned in over 200. Thanks to all those who counted.

Update on #92 (injured Pine Siskin) and #118 (injured Steller's Jay). I am sad to say that they have both passed away. We don't have all the details yet, but no matter what, it's still disheartening.

On to happier things. Here are some more of the pics we have taken over the last week. Again, we hope you enjoy and good birding!

American Robin and Varied Thrush

Steller's jay

Flickers in the fog at Mt. Tabor

Mourning Dove at Jackson Bottom

Male Wood Duck at Laurelhurst Park

Lesser Goldfinch
Dark-Eyed Junco

House Finch

Mallards at Jackson Bottom

Black-Capped Chickadee

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Great Backyard Bird Count

Well, it's the day after the end of the Great Backyard Bird Count. We hope you all counted for the GBBC and remember, you have until March 1st to submit your checklists!

Where to begin? Geez. We have been super busy the last few days. We went and counted at quite a few places. Over the next few days, we'll be posting pics of our trips. We went to Laurelhurst Park, Mt. Tabor, Powell Butte, Jackson Bottom Wetlands and, of course, our own backyard. We added 7 new Life List birds and 9 new Year List birds! It was an incredible few days. We had so much fun hiking and counting and enjoying time away from home with each other. So, without further ado, here are some of the pics we took. We hope you enjoy.

Winter Wren

Mt. Tabor in the Morning

Townsend's Warbler

European Starling

Pine Siskin

Sharp-Shinned Hawk

Male Hooded Merganser

Golden-Crowned Sparrow

Canada Goose

Male Bufflehead

Brown Creeper

Male American Kestrel

American Coot

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Saturday, February 16, 2008

What is this bird?

We need your help, fellow birders. Michelle took this photo today during a short hike through Mt. Tabor. She estimated that it was about 5-6 inches, but it was hard to tell because it was way up in the top of a tree. She said that it sang continuously atop his perch but she heard no other bird responding. So, here are the photos. Thanks for your help.

Good birding!

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