Monday, December 22, 2008

A new visitor!

Well, here we are in the middle of the biggest winter storm to hit Portland since 1968. We have 12-14 inches of snow on the ground with 2-3 foot snow drifts, and that's just in the yard. It has been so hectic trying to make sure that the birds have enough dry food. But, they have rewarded our efforts with their company and antics. We are happy to do it.

Not only are we rewarded with their presence, but last night we had a new yard bird!! A Lincoln's Sparrow found his way into the yard and into our record books! He was with us for most of today, as well. He seems to prefer hanging out with the Juncos. That's where we have spotted him on multiple occasions. How much fun!

Here he is! A Lincoln Sparrow! He was pretty small for a Sparrow (about 5.5 inches) and he has that buffy white belly that stands out from a mile away. Similar to the Song Sparrow, but he didn't act like a Song at all. It was actually his behavior that caught our attention. He was very calm and quite. We'll post more photos tomorrow!

Michelle behind a mound of snow in a parking lot just up the street from us. You can barely see her waving from afar.

Mrs. Hummy sitting on her new favorite perch on the back porch.

Mr. Hummy looking as pretty as ever. This was taken through our window so it doesn't do him justice.

A rarity for this yard. Both the male and female on the same feeder. Even when we have 6 Hummingbirds in the yard at the same time, they never feed together.

Lesser Goldfinches waiting for a turn at a thistle sack on the back porch.

Another busy thistle sack under our bathroom window.

Here's a pic (again, through the window) of the sack on the porch.

A wonderful Lesser just surveying the yard.

This poor Lesser had some ice stuck to his cap.

Here's another with ice on her feathers. Stupid freezing rain!

A Nuthatch trying his hand at some frozen suet. We have been switching out the suet cakes a couple of times a day, so they aren't so difficult to eat.

A curious Junco just outside our bathroom window.

A male House Finch fluffed up and looking his best!

A Lesser Goldfinch and the female Anna's Hummingbird taken through our office window.

A Northern Flicker in our icy Lilac.

A frosted Scrub-Jay looking for his next peanut.

Another Scrub-Jay on one of the shepherds hooks. Just below, on the left hook, is a peanut wreath. His favorite stop in the yard.

A Robin bathing. How crazy can the birds be? We might take some preventative measures so they can still drink but not bathe.

Another Robin in our frozen Mountain Ash.

Juncos, a Song Sparrow, a White-Crowned Sparrow and in the back left (the smaller bird above the White-Crowned) is the Lincoln's Sparrow.

This is what happens to birds when they bathe in sub-freezing temps! Starlings are not the brightest of creatures.

The Townsend's Warbler has been visiting frequently during "Winter Storm '08" (that's what the local news channels are calling it)!

Trying to chip away at the suet.

The Yellow-Rumped Warblers are frequently in the yard, too. We're glad they are back for the winter.

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Mary said...

What a bounty of birds! I've never seen a Lincoln's Sparrow...very cute little thing!

Anonymous said...

Really like your blog. I too live in Portland. I was surprised to see Hummingbirds in this weather, but I have one that comes several times a day. Great pictures! Thanks!

Owlman said...

Wow awesome winter birds. Our winter birds here in the NE seem to be a lot more plain than the colorful guys you have out there. Hummers in winter - what a treat!

Beverly said...

Yeah, my sentiments exactly, Owlman! I live in Colorado…and can’t imagine hummers in winter! A treat, indeed! Earlier in the year, I had as many as 40 or 50 hummers at the 6-7 feeders I kept for them. I’ve got photos of 6-8 or more at a feeder; all ports occupied! It was wild to see…and mostly happened at dusk, as they tanked up for the night. I had Calliope, Broad-tailed, Black-chinned and Rufus Hummers last summer.

But then, you’ve got all sorts of cool birds there…thank you so much for sharing your pictures! I look forward to your Cam-shots, too! Someday I’ll have one of those little beauties…

Have a delightful holiday,