Friday, April 29, 2011

#49 Field Tip: Bright Colors

If it is easy for us to spot fellow birders in the field, think what it must be like for birds - especially if we are wearing brightly-colored attire. Wear clothing that blends in with the environment. Neutral, earth-toned colors are best, while white or bright colors tends to attract notice, and possibly scare-away wildlife.
photo © adrian binns

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

#48 Field Tip: Birding Festivals

Birding Festivals provide an excellent excuse to visit a place you’ve always wanted to see, but weren’t quite sure where to go or what to do when you got there!

Just about every major birding destination features an annual festival, usually a 2-4 day event that includes exciting speakers, programs and field trips. They offer ample opportunities to learn about a wide variety of birding topics and meet other enthusiastic birders. Festival field trips usually amass long lists of species, including regional specialties.
photo © adrian binns

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

#47 Keeping an Eye On..... Mockingbirds

"There is a mockingbird singing songs in a tree,                      
there is a mockingbird singing songs just for you and me....."

Today I could not get this song out of my head, as I listened to the strong, clear, bursts of melody, of this amazing mimic.  Imitations included a wonderful repertoire of the birds in my neighborhod - cardinal, blue jay, red-tailed hawk, tufted titmouse.....
lyrics from Mockingbird by Barclay James Harvest
photo © adrian binns

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

#46 Backyard: O' Bare, Dead Tree, Leave It Be

The leaves shrivel and drop.             The bark crumbles to the ground. Exposed wood withers.

In short, the tree is dying.

You may think it useless, but think again. Dead trees, aka snags, are precious homes for a host of birds such as wrens, chickadees, bluebirds, screech owls and Great Crested Flycatchers.

Woodpeckers often create the holes that are so important for these cavity nesters. Won't you please leave your trees be?
photo © adrian binns

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

#45 Keeping an Eye On..... Carolina Wrens

The Carolina Wren that inhabits my backyard has been singing a lot lately - “tea-kettle, tea-kettle, tea-kettle.” He sings because winter is ending and he is eager to pair up for the spring.

His bright white supercilium (eyebrow) is the most obvious feature on his rich brown body, as I watch him eating from my peanut feeder. The subtle barring on his tail and wings earn my admiration. Like most wrens, he moves like lightening, disappearing in a flash into the shrubbery.

Look for all this next time a Carolina Wren visits your backyard.
photo © adrian binns