Songbirds

An Hour At Barber Park


07Mar2014_1b_Greenbelts-Barber_FishermanI spent about an hour at Barber Park, just east of Boise and along the Boise River. Hoping for Bald Eagles, but just a little late in the season for them. Better looking for them in December and January. But I did see a variety of things: this guy fishing, Red-Tail hawk, raccoon tracks, Great Blue Heron and a beautiful Bohemian Waxwing. The Red-Winged Blackbirds were singing, too.
A good day for this short walk. Light winds and temperature about 58 degrees. Maybe one of these days I will get up early enough so I can be there at about 8 am. Better sightings at that time. But for now, enjoy these photos and Left-Click any of them to see them enlarged. Keep Looking Up!

Mallard Duck

Mallard Duck

Raccoon tracks

Raccoon tracks

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Red-Tail Hawk

Red-Tail Hawk

Cedar Waxwing eating a red berry

Bohemian Waxwing eating a red berry

Cedar Waxwing sitting and looking

Bohemian Waxwing sitting and looking

07Mar2014_1e_Greenbelts-Barber_Cedar-Waxwing-Sit-and-Looking

Regaining his balance on a flimsy branch

Regaining his balance on a flimsy branch

Watching the Eyasses From The Falcon Cam


Shawn-Carmen_Falcon_Graphic-TitledWatching the Boise downtown Peregrine Falcon eyasses. By this time, there may be three that have hatched today. I have only seen two, but several reports of watching an egg hatch. And here is the definition of eyas or the plural, eyasses.

Definition of EYAS

: an unfledged bird; specifically : a nestling hawk

 

Origin of EYAS

Middle English, alteration (by incorrect division of a neias) of neias, from Anglo-French niais taken in the nest, from Vulgar Latin *nidax nestling, from Latin nidus nest — more at nest
First Known Use: 15th century [New Merriam Webster Dictionary]

So while watching on a mobile device, I am also watching for the humming birds and the American Goldfinch at our backyard feeders. Good luck today. I caught a House Finch with an attitude and a beautiful American Goldfinch. Look at these photos – Left-Click to see enlarged – and Keep Looking Up! Cheers and good sightings. Please VOTE above. Thanks.

House Finch with an attitude!

House Finch with an attitude!

Time for some water.

Time for some water. It’s 87 degrees outside.

American Goldfinch landing.

American Goldfinch landing.

American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch

Some Backyard Visitors


10Apr2013_1_Backyard-Birds_English-Sparrow-On-Post

 

 

 

While we are waiting for the Boise Downtown Falcons to hatch – actually somewhere probably around the first week in May – I thought I would post some of the visitors that we have in our backyard and ones that keep the Sharp-Shinned Hawk fed. Here is an English Sparrow. Below are a few more species. Enjoy and cast your VOTE above. Thanks.

 

 

 

 

10Apr2013_1a_Backyard-Birds_Mourning-Dove

Mourning Dove. These guys have been around all winter.

Mourning Dove. These guys have been around all winter.

Mourning Dove.

Black-Capped Chickodee. Robin heard one several days ago and now we have actually seen one flitting from branch to branch.

Black-capped Chickadee. Robin heard one several days ago and now we have actually seen one flitting from branch to branch.

10Apr2013_1f_Backyard-Birds_Black-Capped-Chickodee_Better

So there you have some of our “visitors”. Keep Looking Up!

GBBC Latest News. The Numbers are awesome!


American Robin

American Robin

Here is a post from the Great Backyard Bird Count. These are amazing numbers!

Bird Watchers Take the GBBC to New Heights

The numbers tell the story. With its new global reach, the 16th annual Great Backyard Bird Count becomes the largest worldwide bird count ever! As of today:

4 Days
103 Countries
120,000+ Checklists
3,144 Species
25.6+ Million birds

That species total represents nearly one-third of the bird species in the entire world. Bird watchers in the U.S. and Canada set new national records for tallies submitted. Reports have come in from as far away as Antarctica and Afghanistan. So far, 30 states and 3 provinces have set new records for checklist entries. Here are the top ten countries by checklists submitted so far:

Japanese Green Woodpecker by Masami Yoshimura, 2013 GBBC
United States 107,538
Canada 10,970
India 391
Mexico 263
Australia 143
United Kingdom 84
Peru 83
Puerto Rico 79
Iceland 78
Portugal 72

Other Preliminary Results:
Top 5 Most Reported Species (reported on highest number of checklists): Northern Cardinal; Dark-eyed Junco; Mourning Dove; Downy Woodpecker; House Finch
Top 5 Most Common Birds (most individuals reported): Snow Goose; Canada Goose; Red-winged Blackbird; European Starling; American Coot
Finch Invasion: A massive number of northern finch species moved into the U.S. including the Common Redpoll, reported in a record 36 states. Scientists believe these periodic movements are related to natural fluctuations in crops of conifer cones and other seeds in Canada.
Hurricane Sandy: The weather system that caused Sandy’s landfall also blew some European birds to North America and evidence of this is still showing up in GBBC results. The colorful, crested Northern Lapwing was reported in Georgia, New Jersey, and Massachusetts during the GBBC.
GBBC First: A Red-flanked Bluetail has wintered at Queens Park, Vancouver, and was also reported for the GBBC’s first record ever. This British Columbia bird has been drawing bird watchers from all over the U.S. and Canada hoping to see this rarity. This little thrush is one of the only birds in the world with a striking blue tail and is native to Asia; the other GBBC report of this species this year was from Japan.
A more extensive summary of the results will be published on the website in March after scientists at Audubon, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and Bird Studies Canada have a chance to review the reports.

Here is a direct link to the GBBC Web Site. You can also find a link in the sidebar. Enjoy and Keep Looking Up!

Boise Bird Festival


Boise Bird Festival - header copyHere is an event that I think most readers of this blog will be interested in attending. I want to direct your attention to the new Boise Bird Festival site at Boise Bird Festival Site and let you know this is an exciting event. Hope you can attend. The site is maintained by Robert Mortensen and Roberto Martinez. I have placed a permanent link in the sidebar.

Don’t forget to look in the sidebar of this blog for my book, Common Birds Found In Boise, available for purchase online. The book makes a great coffee table book and is 20 pages with 30 photographs of birds I have photographed here in Boise and the surrounding area. Enjoy!

GBBC Visitors


18Feb2013_1_GBBC_Squirrel

 

 

 

 
It has been a pretty good 4 days this year for the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC), at least in our area of Boise. And I know, the Squirrel pictured here is not even a Flying Squirrel. But he did visit us. Many times. Enjoy these photos of some of the birds that we have seen during this event. Left-Click any of these photos to see enlarged. Keep Looking Up!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mourning Dove

Mourning Dove

Rock Pigeon

Rock Pigeon

American Robin

American Robin

Black-Eyed Junco (Oregon Race)

Black-Eyed Junco (Oregon Race)

House Finch

House Finch

House Finch

House Finch

When you look at these birds enlarged, it sure does emphasize their colors and their markings. Cheers!

The GBBC is Halfway


2013-GBBC-Logo_JPGThe Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) is halfway through an amazing wekend of counting the birds in your backyard or neighborhood or just about any place. We have been counting in our backyard. I just received this report from the GBBC at Cornell. Looks like there have been some really busy folks!

GBBC Soars Around the World
We’re a little more than halfway through one of the biggest bird counts in the world, and we’re seeing great participation from the U.S. and Canada as well as from far-flung regions of the world. Thanks to everyone who has been counting with us—please keep the checklists coming!

Halftime Results:

Number of Countries Reporting Checklists: 75

Top 5 Countries with the Most Checklists Reported:
United States (28,949)
Canada (2,620)
India (131)
Mexico (81)
Australia (50)

Top 10 Countries with the Most Species Reported:
United States (609—approaching last year’s U.S./Canada total of 623!)
Mexico (443)
India (340)
Australia (253)
Panama (241)
Canada (229)
Costa Rica (187)
Belize (123)
Colombia (117)
Great Britain (117)

Top Species Reported by the Most Countries:
House Sparrow—31 (All continents but Africa and Antarctica)
Rock Pigeon (26)
Great Egret (20)
Cattle Egret (17)
European Starling (17)
Eurasian Blackbird (15)
Great Cormorant (15)
Black Vulture (14)
Great Tit (14)
Turkey Vulture (14)
Eurasian Collared-Dove (13)
Gray Heron (13)
Great Kiskadee (13)
Mallard (13)

Species with the Most Individual Birds Reported:
Snow Goose (4,224,536)

Top 5 Birds Reported on the Most Checklists:
Northern Cardinal (14,060)
Mourning Dove (12,282)
Dark-eyed Junco (12,057)
Downy Woodpecker (10,043)
House Finch (9,504)

For latest results please visit http://www.birdcount.org