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Monday, June 15, 2009

Crows

The crows have been very vocal lately. I think their babies have fledged! Perhaps I will be as lucky as I was last year and catch sight of the baby crows in the brush, well protected by family members. The "helper" crows are often older siblings from previous years broods. They sometimes remain "on their parents' territory for five or more years".*

The two pictures below were taken last year ~

Young crows on a fallen tree, becoming very quiet at the approach of an intruder. I noticed them because their parents were making such a racket in the trees as I walked past them on the trail. It took me several minutes to locate the babies as they were on the densely treed hillside below me and not easily seen at first.

A baby crow has blue eyes and pink inside the mouth.

*article by Sean Serrell (Cornell Lab of Ornithology)

Bird Photography Weekly #42

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Eagle and the Crow

It was one of those days when the Bald Eagle and the Crow were not in harmony with each other. With the crow in close pursuit, the eagle soared higher and higher until they both became two small black dots in the distance. When they finally disappeared from view, the woman who had been watching from the ground gave up looking and went back inside the house.

Sky Watch Friday

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Two New Birds to Add to My Life List

I think I've correctly identified these beautiful birds.

Pine Siskin Carduelis pinus perched on a willow growing close to the shoreline of Stuart Lake. We drove up here last Sunday.

  • Length 13cm (5")
  • Prominent streaking
  • Yellow at base of tail
  • Yellow wing stripes
  • Short notched tail
  • A summer resident

Chipping Sparrow Spizella passerina perched on a spruce bough in my yard. He was there yesterday evening when I looked out the window.
  • Length 14cm (5 1/2")
  • Bright chestnut crown
  • White eyebrow
  • Black line extending from bill through eye to ear (in the photo it has a reddish tinge)
  • Gray nape
  • Two white wing bars
  • Also a summer resident