Saturday, February 28, 2015

Backyard Beauty, February 2015

We've been hit with a fair amount of winter weather this week. Freezing rain, sleet, ice and snow caused the kids to miss 2 1/2 days of school.  So being stuck at home after the latest blast came in yesterday afternoon, I sat on the back patio and watched our feeders to see who came to visit.

Carolina Wren
A Carolina Wren was the first to stop by after I set up my chair Friday afternoon.  They're the only bird I've seen on our suet feeder so far since we put it up a few weeks ago.  I'd love for a Blue Jay or Northern Flicker to check it out.

American Robin
American Robins were hunkered down in the trees, but weren't interested in our suet or seed.

Northern Cardinal
A male Northern Cardinal was next to actually approach the feeders, starting first on a nearby palm ...

Northern Cardinal
... then advancing to the shepherd's hook ...

Northern Cardinal
... then somewhat surprisingly actually grabbing safflower seeds straight from the feeder.  I'm used to them normally feeding off the ground, but the snow was making that a bit challenging.

Carolina Chickadee
Ever wonder what a Carolina Chickadee in flight looks like from the back?  Wonder no more!

Snowy palm fronds.  I doubt I'll get many chances for pictures of those.

Carolina Chickadee, Carolina Wren
The snow had changed to a freezing rain and the clouds were a bit thinner this morning, so I had slightly better light.  I call this one, "Was It Something I Said?"

Female Northern Cardinal
Female cardinals have been a little tougher for me than their male counterparts.  They seem slightly more timid, and don't fully show themselves as often.

American Goldfinches
Half a dozen American Goldfinches all came at once.  These two shared the Nyjer quite civilly.

Dark-eyed Junco
Knowing some birds like the Dark-eyed Juncos prefer to eat off the ground, I liberally shook out our hanging feeders to accommodate them.  This one seemed grateful.

Male House Finch
A couple of pairs of House Finches came briefly.  They were our most prevalent visitors back in Colorado.

Dark-eyed Junco
Yup.  Happy Junco.

American Goldfinches
The civility between the Goldfinches eventually turned sour.  Cold, wet weather will make anybody cranky.

Carolina Chickadee
Chickadees are quick little buggers.  They fly down, snatch a seed, and fly off again to eat it elsewhere.  I have a lot of shots of unoccupied bird feeders because I was a hair too late on the shutter button.

Carolina Chickadee, House Finch
Sharing Is Caring

Another idiosyncratic snowy palm, this time the trunk.

Snowy days are easy to take for granted when you have them all the time.  The rarity of them down here made this one special. :)

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