Monday, December 30, 2013

Nature Notes: Year End

We had one of our more dramatic temperature changes recently.
A few days before Christmas it was like spring with very warm temperatures. Thanks to Eileen's I.D. help on another post, I think that's a yellow bellied sapsucker below.
There was a 55 degree drop in the temperature from the warm day to the Christmas Eve low.
The American Robin above was able to stand on a refrozen bird bath that I'd put warm water in just a few hours earlier.
The mourning doves watched me from the trees while I put out some seed treats on the deck wall.
They landed on the wall, as soon as I left, for their Christmas feast.
The junco above also joined in for the feast.
The red-bellied woodpecker gorged for a long time.
The titmouse below was another diner at the wall feeding trough. 
Another day, I caught the bluejay bathing as soon as I got the ice out.
 The bluejays are so noisy that I frequently know when to look for them.
 Male cardinals are winter's flowers with their fiery red feathers.
 The nuthatch below was partly hidden in the tree.
I love how soft the male cardinal feathers look below.
By the way, I used to have dozens of bird feeders I kept full, year round, on my deck and in my yard as well as several suet cages. After I gradually let my garden go wild, except in bad weather I had enough food for the birds in my wild yard and stopped putting out the feeders. I do always put food out for them when it snows or sleets. When we had such a dramatic drop in temperatures, I decided to use some of my bad weather seed stash to treat the birds for a few days. It was also a Christmas treat for me because I was able to spot more of the birds that stay hidden except when I put food out for them. In addition to the ones I included in this post I saw wrens, towhees, chickadees, a flicker, downy woodpecker, house finch, sparrow, brown thrashers and female cardinals. We had a gorgeous sky yesterday.


Ela said...

Beautiful birds. My favourite are the cardinals in the red.
Happy New Year !

Anonymous said...

Neat photos. You can recognize the Sapsucker by the row of holes it makes in tree trunks. My guy almost killed my Viburnum, then attacked the Holly tree.

Carole M. said...

beautiful photos and lovely birds; it really is hard on them in harsh weather

Leora said...

We also had temperature, now down. Thanks for teaching me about a yellow bellied sapsucker. You got a lot of bird variety in this post.

aspiritofsimplicity said...

great captures. I love to see the birds.

Rambling Woods said...

Great bird photos.... Thanks for helping them out.... Happy New Year Carver......

eileeninmd said...

Carver, I am sure the birds appreciated your treat during the bad weather.. Great birds and photos. I wish you all the best in 2014, Happy New Year!

Arija said...

What a lovely selection of birds Carver. With that lot I don't think I could resist putting out suet feeders fro them just so I could watch them. Gad you are making sure they have water though.

Wishing you a very Happy New Year!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

How lovely that you gave the birds a special gift in that cold weather -- they definitely gave one back to you by being there . Thank you for sharing it with us! I would like to live somewhere where I could have a wild yard.