Sunday, January 27, 2008

Bird Count & Red-bellied Woodpecker

Today was a good bird count day. I was very happy to see the Red-bellied woodpecker. They are such spirited birds and I love that 'barking dog' sound they make to announce their arrival. Some of the birds and behaviors that were observed today:

  • 6 Starlings that enjoyed my heated bird bath immensely. They splashed around for several minutes.
  • 5 House sparrows
  • 1 male cardinal
  • 1 Junco
  • 1 Nuthatch so polite taking one peanut at a time from a wire cage feeder.
  • 1 Blue Jay that was too shy to come to the feeders but made sure everyone heard him in the yard.
  • 4 Mourning doves that enjoyed pooping in my heated bird bath. I had to clean it three times today.
  • 1 Red-bellied woodpecker that fought off the starlings quite admirably so it could enjoy the suet cake in peace.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Black-capped Chickadees

Today our family visited Hartwick Pines State Park in Grayling, Michigan. It's a great place to go birdwatching and they have a bird feeding station too. When I went out on the deck of the visitor's center, small swarms of black-capped Chicadees were landing on my head and arms. The park staff said they thought I had food, so they were kind enough to give us some sunflower seeds to feed them. I cannot describe the wonderful experience of having these little birds clinging to your finger and trusting you enough to take a seed from your hand. I had one Chickadee that sat in my hand for close to a minute while he sorted through the seeds he wanted. My husband accurately described them as little angels surrounding us.
I highly recommend visiting Hartwick Pines for birdwatching. In addition to the chickadees, we have seen Evening Groesbeaks, nuthatches, Downy & Hairy Woodpeckers and Flickers upon our many visits. Though after today, my favorite experience has been seeing the Chickadee.