Hummer Haven UnLtd.: Blog https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog en-us (C) Hummer Haven UnLtd. hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) Thu, 01 Dec 2022 03:24:00 GMT Thu, 01 Dec 2022 03:24:00 GMT https://hummerhavenunltd.com/img/s/v-12/u594331759-o146253739-50.jpg Hummer Haven UnLtd.: Blog https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog 120 80 November's swan song 11-30-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/11/novembers-swan-song-11-30-22 Winter is nigh as November ends.

There are interesting nomadic birds that may yet be seen before the New Year arrives. What are they looking for?

 

11-16-22 Northern Cardinals in cover of Clove Currant and Arrowwood Viburnum11-16-22 Northern Cardinals in cover of Clove Currant and Arrowwood Viburnum

 

Cover, as these two Northern Cardinals found in the Clove Currant(Ribes odoratum) and the 'Blue Muffin' Viburnum(Viburnum dentatum 'Blue Muffin').

 

11-17-22 Ten Mourning Doves resting11-17-22 Ten Mourning Doves resting

 

Cover, as these ten preening and resting Mourning Doves found by blending into the stones and leaves near the Bubbler.

 

11-18-22 Dark-eyed Junco and Nine Eurasian Tree Sparrows in cover of Smooth Hydrangeas11-18-22 Dark-eyed Junco and Nine Eurasian Tree Sparrows in cover of Smooth Hydrangeas

 

Cover, as this Dark-eyed Junco and nine Eurasian Tree Sparrows have found in the twiggy stems of the Smooth Hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescens). Are there really ten birds in there? See if you can find them all.

 

11-18-22 American Goldfinches eating Cliff Goldenrod seeds11-18-22 American Goldfinches eating Cliff Goldenrod seeds 11-18-22 American Goldfinches eating Cliff Goldenrod seeds11-18-22 American Goldfinches eating Cliff Goldenrod seeds

 

Food and Cover, as these American Goldfinches found in the Cliff Goldenrod (Solidago drummondii) planted within the driveway wall.

 

11-26-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-26-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

Red-breasted Nuthatches are winter residents that continue to find food such as peanuts, sunflower seeds and even some black walnuts. (Dan has shared some after his painstaking efforts to collect and process them.)

In the Winter Finch Forecast, Red-breasted Nuthatches are passerines mentioned along with many finch species. 

 

Winter Finch Forecast 2022-2023

 

11-19-22 FOS Purple Finch female and 3 House Finches11-19-22 FOS Purple Finch female and 3 House Finches

 

Our FOS female Purple Finch, on the left, found black oil sunflower seeds along with three male House Finches. Let's take a closer look at some comparison photos. 

 

House Finch. female on left, Purple  Finch female on rightHouse Finch. female on left, Purple Finch female on right House Finch on left, Purple  Finch on rightHouse Finch on left, Purple Finch on right

 

In both of the photos above, the House Finches are on the left and the Purple Finches are on the right. You may get lucky and see Purple Finches at your feeders this winter. It does require careful inspection to tell them apart from the House Finches.

 

1-30-22 Common Redpolls1-30-22 Common Redpolls

 

Water, this is an irruption year for Common Redpoll like we luckily saw last winter at the Bubbler. They will come to finch feeders, but we only saw them at the water, three mornings in a row.

 

1-1-21 Pine Siskin on icy branch1-1-21 Pine Siskin on icy branch 1-10-21 16 Pine Siskins1-10-21 16 Pine Siskins 1-15-21 8 Pine Siskins1-15-21 8 Pine Siskins

 

In the winter of 2020 - 2021, we had Pine Siskins, another irruptive finch. Though our new Haikubox has been detecting them, we have yet to see any. Eyes peeled! Seedeaters like these are always a bit thirsty.

 


 

Almost ten years ago, we had Red Crossbills on two days in February, 2013. They have been seen in different parts of Missouri this fall. The crossed bill is distinctive! Like the Common Redpoll, these birds were only seen at the water features. They were finding food in the native trees.

 

Another possibility that would be a record for myself and birding friends is this bird, an Evening Grosbeak. One was reported at a feeder less than a mile from us in early November. This stocky finch loves black oil sunflower seed, and our tray feeder is ready!

 

Evening Grosbeak

 

 

While we keep a lookout, other winter visitors and the usual suspects keep us interested in their looks and behaviors.

 

11-27-22 Yellow-bellied Sapscuker11-27-22 Yellow-bellied Sapscuker

11-28-22 Brown Creeper11-28-22 Brown Creeper
 

An immature Yellow-bellied Sapsucker shook water off its feathers after a late bath. A Brown Creeper investigated some rootlets for a larvae or tiny spider.

 

11-26-22 Carolina Wren11-26-22 Carolina Wren 11-26-22 Hairy Woodpecker11-26-22 Hairy Woodpecker

 

A Carolina Wren took a bit of bark butter from the sandwich feeder while a Hairy Woodpecker looked for an approach to the suet.

 

11-27-22 Downy Woodpecker and Red-breasted Nuthatch11-27-22 Downy Woodpecker and Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

A Downy Woodpecker made the Red-breasted Nuthatch think twice before entering the peanut feeder area. There is a pecking order!

 

11-27-22 House Finch with tumor11-27-22 House Finch with tumor

10-29-22 Leucistic Eurasian Tree Sparrow10-29-22 Leucistic Eurasian Tree Sparrow

 

Of course, the more you look, the more you see, and we do see anomalies. The House Finch has some sort of tumor, and the Eurasian Tree Sparrow is leucistic, lacking pigment in its wing feathers.

 

11-12-22 Eastern Bluebirds11-12-22 Eastern Bluebirds 11-13-22 Eastern Bluebird11-13-22 Eastern Bluebird

 

Eastern Bluebirds seem to come in around noon to drink, bathe or get tidbits from the window feeders.

 

Let's hope for a decent winter for all!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/11/novembers-swan-song-11-30-22 Thu, 01 Dec 2022 03:24:28 GMT
Mid-November already! 11-15-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/11/mid-november-already-11-15-22  Fall Color was beautiful but leaves have fallen away after several nights below freezing. 

 

11-7-22 ":Blue Muffin" Viburnum (Viburnum dentatum x Blue Muffin)11-7-22 ":Blue Muffin" Viburnum (Viburnum dentatum x Blue Muffin)

 

"Blue Muffin", an Arrowood Viburnum cultivar, peaked a few days ago. It was stunning!

 

 

On 11-9-22, a female Cloudless Sulphur butterfly sipped nectar from the last blooms of the Black and Blue Salvia.

 

11-5-22 Barred Owl11-5-22 Barred Owl

 

One of the resident Barred Owls rested the whole day in the woodland. Around 4:00 pm, Blue Jays and other birds gave it a hard time for waking up!

 

11-8-22 American Robins at American Beautyberry11-8-22 American Robins at American Beautyberry

11-5-22 Eastern Bluebird  at American Beautyberry11-5-22 Eastern Bluebird at American Beautyberry

11-7-22 Eastern Bluebird  at American Beautyberry11-7-22 Eastern Bluebird at American Beautyberry
 

 

American Beautyberry is still feeding thrushes like American Robins and Eastern Bluebirds. 

 

11-7-22 Eastern Bluebird11-7-22 Eastern Bluebird 11-7-22 Eastern Bluebird11-7-22 Eastern Bluebird

 

The bluebirds also spend time hawking insects in the leaves, perching occasionally for a better vantage point.


11-7-22 FOS Hermit Thrush11-7-22 FOS Hermit Thrush

 

The first Hermit Thrush of fall was detected early in the morning by the Haikubox and I finally saw it later at the bubbler. It has moved on.

 

11-8-22 FOS Yellow-bellied Sapsucker in near-adult plumage11-8-22 FOS Yellow-bellied Sapsucker in near-adult plumage 11-10-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker11-10-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 11-10-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker  immature11-10-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker immature 11-10-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker  immature11-10-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker immature

 

Several Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers have been seen. A near-adult plumaged male chased the immature bird. (last three photos) That day, there was yet one more that escaped my camera. This bird easily disappears into the oaks.

 

11-11-22 American Robins11-11-22 American Robins
 

There must have been at least 50 robins here on 11/11/22. They dominated the bubbler and basin for most of the morning.

 

11-11-22 Cedar Waxwing11-11-22 Cedar Waxwing 11-11-22 Cedar Waxwings11-11-22 Cedar Waxwings

 

Cedar Waxwings! The second photo shows a young bird with an adult. The robins moved on and these finally had a chance to get to the water.

 

11-11-22 12 Cedar Waxwings11-11-22 12 Cedar Waxwings 11-11-22 Cedar Waxwings11-11-22 Cedar Waxwings

11-11-22 Cedar Waxwings

 

Cedar Waxwings, they squabble, then settle. What gorgeous birds they are!

 

11-11-22 Northern Cardinal immature11-11-22 Northern Cardinal immature

11-11-22 Blue Jay11-11-22 Blue Jay
 

Some of the usual suspects are seen regularly. Young Northern Cardinals and Blue Jays approach differently. Blue Jays always squawk!
 

11-11-22 Song Sparrow11-11-22 Song Sparrow

11-11-22 Black-capped Chickadee11-11-22 Black-capped Chickadee

 

A Song Sparrow shows up once in a while but the Chickadees are here every day. Now, which chickadee is it? Black-capped or Carolina? Therein lies the issue. I will take that up another time! 

 

11-11-22 American Goldfinch eating Cliff Goldenrod seed11-11-22 American Goldfinch eating Cliff Goldenrod seed
 

American Goldfinches are often seen in the garden eating purple coneflower seeds, but now I see them wherever Cliff Goldenrod (Solidago drummondii) is planted, under the feeders and along the driveway. Today, I stepped out the back door and six flew up from a patch. They are a Native Keystone perennial, supporting 97 moth and butterfly species. In the fall and winter, seeds feed the birds.

 

  11-11-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-11-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

11-11-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-11-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

11-11-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler11-11-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

We seem to have two Red-breasted Nuthatches again for the winter. They are delightful to hear and see every morning. A Yellow-rumped Warbler comes in to drink and take a quick splash bath. 


11-11-22 FOS Red-winged Blackbird11-11-22 FOS Red-winged Blackbird

 

Our FOS Red-winged Blackbird showed up on 11/11/22 as well. It was in among 150 or so Common Grackles. That really was a busy day!

  11-11-22 Common Grackle11-11-22 Common Grackle

 

As you can see, birds like this Common Grackle really do get "into" the bubble! The Bubbler is now into its 23rd year of attracting birds.

 

 

It is mid-November. Deer are roaming the neighborhood, bucks following does. It is also time to prepare for the holidays.

Candles brighten these darker days in our home. We wish you all a warm and Happy Thanksgiving!

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/11/mid-november-already-11-15-22 Tue, 15 Nov 2022 14:00:41 GMT
October is "ober!" 10-31-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/10/october-ober-10-31-22  

Cover, Food and Water

 

First, let's take a look at how native plants provide essential cover, or safe places to rest, nest and digest.

 

 

This is the Bubbler area, with the native smooth hydrangeas (Hydrangea arborescens) in the upper right, surrounding the back of the Bubbler. 

 

 

From the opposite side, one can see the umbrella effect of the shrubs on the west side. Birds constantly fly into the twiggy cover of these plants. The birds feel safe as they check out the different ways to access the water, then preen and rest. 

 

10-22-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in cover of smooth hydrangea10-22-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in cover of smooth hydrangea

 

This Yellow-rumped Warbler flew in there after a bath, preened its feathers and then looked for any tiny insects. This is the kind of activity that I see all the time, so if you have a water feature, you might want to think about adding more native shrubs around it for cover. It helps the birds feel safe! Use this resource to find the best plants recommended by Doug Tallamy and his research, tailored to your zip code.

 

Native Plant Finder, “Best” = Keystone Plants:

  https://www.nwf.org/NativePlantFinder/

 

10-19-22 Eastern Bluebird eating Virginia creeper berries10-19-22 Eastern Bluebird eating Virginia creeper berries 10-24-22 Eastern Bluebird after Blackhaw drupes10-24-22 Eastern Bluebird after Blackhaw drupes 10-19-22 Eastern Bluebird10-19-22 Eastern Bluebird
 

The last post showed the blue berries of the Virginia Creeper(Parthenocissus quinquefolia), and that is what the Eastern Bluebird is eating in the first photo. The second bird has picked off the much larger drupe of the Blackhaw(Viburnum prunifolium). Fall fruits help birds fatten up for the winter!

 

10-20-22 First winter Chipping Sparrow10-20-22 First winter Chipping Sparrow 10-21-22 First fall Chipping Sparrow10-21-22 First fall Chipping Sparrow

 

A first fall Chipping Sparrow had me scratching my head, consulting the field guides and my birding friends! Was it a rare Clay-colored Sparrow? No, because it has the dark eye line and a grayish rump, they kindly told me. The third photo shows a spring adult bird in breeding plumage. Birds can be tricky to identify!

 

Now we move on to the Cutest Bird Contest...

 

10-21-22 Winter Wren10-21-22 Winter Wren 10-21-22 Winter Wren10-21-22 Winter Wren

 

A diminutive Winter Wren is the first contestant, mousey-brown and perky.

 

10-28-22 Brown Creeper10-28-22 Brown Creeper 10-21-22 Brown Creeper10-21-22 Brown Creeper

 

How about the Brown Creeper, which I call the 'little toasted marshmallow'?

 

10-27-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch10-27-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

10-21-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch10-21-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

And the Red-breasted Nuthatches make us smile with their 'tiny tin horn' call!

 

10-19-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet10-19-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet 10-19-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglets10-19-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglets

 

Ruby-crowned Kinglets? They definitely rank high on the humorously cute scale.

  10-28-22 Golden-crowned Kinglet10-28-22 Golden-crowned Kinglet 10-24-22 Golden-crowned Kinglet10-24-22 Golden-crowned Kinglet

 

There's nothing like being flashed by a Golden-crowned Kinglet! I'll leave it up to you to pick a favorite, if you can. 

 

10-28-22 FOY #114 Field Sparrow10-28-22 FOY #114 Field Sparrow 10-28-22 FOY #114 Field Sparrow10-28-22 FOY #114 Field Sparrow

 

I was really pleased to see a Field Sparrow come to the bubbler, maybe only the third time I've had one here. This species is in decline, with a Conservation Concern Score of 12, just like the next bird.

 

10-28-22 Mourning Dove, juvenile10-28-22 Mourning Dove, juvenile 10-29-22 Mourning Doves10-29-22 Mourning Doves

 

Mourning Doves are also having difficulty finding good habitat. The first photo shows a juvenile bird, the first time I've managed to photograph one. Its tail feathers are still growing out, it looks very young. Don't know where they nested, but I'm so glad to see a young bird.

 

Listening for birds, with a little help...

 

12-17-13 Bird Monitor12-17-13 Bird Monitor 11-29-14 Bird Monitor11-29-14 Bird Monitor

 

In 2013, I purchased a baby monitor, with the microphone mounted inside this PVC pipe that Dan put together and painted brown. It's nice to turn it on and listen to whatever birds might be calling outside, when I'm inside. Then, I step out to look for them and confirm their presence. It keeps me connected to what's happening in our sanctuary. 

 

 

 

We recently added another device called a Haikubox to help us know what may be here in our habitat.(It seems to be out of stock again, we were on the waiting list for a while. FYI, we receive no compensation for mentioning this on our website.) Here is an article about it and how it was developed.

Haikubox gives citizen scientists a tool to track birds

 

After one week, here is the list of birds detected by our Haikubox and how often they were recorded. The app alerts me to new birds, with low, medium or high confidence. Now, I did not see or hear many of these birds such as the Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Wild Turkey or Mourning Warbler. It sure has me looking and listening for them, though! When I can confirm a bird that is detected, I do so with the app.

Now, we've always realized that we would never know all the birds that might be here because we have intentionally provided lots of cover (safe places in the form of native plants) for them.

The best part about the Haikubox is that it is working all the time and sending the data directly to the K. Lisa Yang Center for Conservation Bioacoustics at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. We love the idea of making this contribution to the data set of "where the birds are", 24/7.

 


 

10-26-22 Barred Owl10-26-22 Barred Owl

Barred Owl, resting in cover, quietly

 

Happy Halloween!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/10/october-ober-10-31-22 Mon, 31 Oct 2022 21:59:57 GMT
Mid-October update. 10/19/22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/10/mid-october-update-10/19/22 Mid-October and a hard freeze with 29.6 degrees on Tuesday, 10-18-22!

And, it was 28.9 degrees this morning - brrr!

 

Let's look at the latest migrants, which we won't be seeing again until next April.

 

10-9-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler10-9-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler

 

Chestnut-sided Warbler 

 

10-9-22 Black-throated Green Warbler10-9-22 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

Black-throated Green Warbler 

  10-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler10-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler

 

Blackburnian Warbler

 

10-14-22 Nashville Warbler10-14-22 Nashville Warbler

 

Nashville Warbler

  10-14-22 Orange-crowned Warbler10-14-22 Orange-crowned Warbler 10-14-22 Orange-crowned Warbler10-14-22 Orange-crowned Warbler 10-14-22 Orange-crowned Warbler10-14-22 Orange-crowned Warbler

 

Orange-crowned Warbler, yes the crown is barely visible on this little dull bird, but there.

 

10-9-22 Tennessee Warbler10-9-22 Tennessee Warbler
10-14-22 Tennessee Warbler with insect on Elm (Ulmus americana)10-14-22 Tennessee Warbler with insect on Elm (Ulmus americana)

 

Tennessee Warblers have been seen on many days finding tiny insects in the bark of this young American Elm (Ulmus americana).

 

10-17-22 Orange-crowned Warbler10-17-22 Orange-crowned Warbler 10-17-22 Orange-crowned Warbler10-17-22 Orange-crowned Warbler

 

Another Orange-crowned Warbler had luck finding tiny larvae on the flower heads of Smooth Hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescens). 

 

10-17--22 Yellow-rumped Warbler10-17--22 Yellow-rumped Warbler 10-18-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler10-18-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

Yellow-rumped Warblers will now be around a good part of the winter.

We may yet see a stray late bird of another species but time is running out for them to make it to their winter homes. 

How about a focus on two confusing species? Tennessee and Orange-crowned Warblers can be vexing. Take a look.

 

 

There are some differences, not often easy to see before they flit away!

The Orange-crowned has a dingy breast with subtle streaking, yellow undertail coverts, and is barely pale below. It is often quite gray.

The Tennessee Warbler has a trace of a wing bar, white under tail coverts and a more conspicuous eyebrow stripe.

Underparts are paler with almost no streaking and an overall greener look. Here they are, together.

 

 

Maybe next fall it will be easier!!

 

10-12-22 Blue-headed Vireo10-12-22 Blue-headed Vireo

 

Blue-headed Vireo, always a welcome sight!

 

10-14-22 Dark-eyed Junco10-14-22 Dark-eyed Junco 10-15-22 Dark-eyed Junco10-15-22 Dark-eyed Junco

 

Dark-eyed Juncos have arrived!

 

10-14-22 Common Grackle10-14-22 Common Grackle 10-14-22 Common Grackle10-14-22 Common Grackle 10-14-22 43 Common Grackles10-14-22 43 Common Grackles

 

Common Grackles came as twenty, then a hundred. Counted forty-three birds in this screen shot at the bubbler.

 

10-18-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch female10-18-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch female 10-18-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch10-18-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

After not seeing one for five days, two Red-breasted Nuthatches came in on Tuesday, 10-18-22 and went directly to the peanut feeder. Perhaps this is the pair from last winter, returning to Shady Oaks as their winter digs!

 

10-18-22 Blue Jay after peanut crumbs10-18-22 Blue Jay after peanut crumbs 10-10-22 Northern Cardinal10-10-22 Northern Cardinal
 

Blue Jay and Northern Cardinal, let's not forget the home crowd! They will keep us company now.

 

Friday, we will celebrate 22 years since the Bubbler first began attracting birds.

Now with 125 species and 2 hybrids documented at this water feature, 

we are adding another 'tool' to become better 'citizen scientists'. More on that exciting development next time!

 

Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) provides fatty blue berries for flycatchers, 

thrushes, warblers and vireos on their way south, and for overwintering birds, too.

 

Enjoy the wonder of fall!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/10/mid-october-update-10/19/22 Wed, 19 Oct 2022 16:46:59 GMT
Late September, Part Two on 10-8-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/10/late-september-part-two-on-10-8-22

 

Sunset on Sanibel Island, 12-26-19

 

Our dear friends in Fort Myers have been on our minds and in our hearts

 since Hurricane Ian came ashore on 9-29-22.

The catastrophic destruction of these places we love is heartbreaking to see in photos and videos.

We send our love, courage and strength, and we're with you in spirit every step of the way, as you recover.

 

 

Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia)

 

It is Fall now.

Many of the migratory birds have been seen on several days in succession, rotating through in small flocks. They're feeding in the layers of trees, shrubs and ground cover finding insects, seeds, nectar and berries. Ironically, our area is behind in rainfall, so the birds are looking for water. They've been at the dripper baths, stream bed, and bubbler and even taking turns in the sprinkler when we're watering the plants. Here are some of the highlights.

 

 

10-2-22 Blackburnian Warbler10-2-22 Blackburnian Warbler

10-6-22 Blackburnian Warbler10-6-22 Blackburnian Warbler

 

Blackburnian Warblers have been part of these flocks. The first year male has a bit darker eye line and a very yellow throat!

  10-6-22 Two Tennessee Warbler females with Blackburnian Warbler female10-6-22 Two Tennessee Warbler females with Blackburnian Warbler female

 

First fall female Blackburnian Warbler is a bit faded looking in comparison. It is on the right of these two female Tennessee Warblers.

 

10-5-22 Blackburnian Warbler female10-5-22 Blackburnian Warbler female

 

In studying the guides, I believe this is an adult female Blackburnian with an orangey tinge to the yellow in the throat. That's an American Goldfinch in the lower right corner.

 

9-24-22 Ovenbird9-24-22 Ovenbird

 

An Ovenbird, also a warbler, made full use of the bubbler on the day it came in.

 

9-25-22 Black-throated Green Warbler9-25-22 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

Black-throated Green Warblers have been consistently seen.

 

9-25-22 Magnolia and Chestnut-sided Warblers9-25-22 Magnolia and Chestnut-sided Warblers

 

Magnolia and Chestnut-sided Warblers were bathing buddies.

 

9-26-22 Two Magnolia and Tennessee Warblers9-26-22 Two Magnolia and Tennessee Warblers

 

Two Magnolia Warblers flank a Tennessee Warble on the bubbler rock.

 

10-1-22 Magnolia Warbler10-1-22 Magnolia Warbler

 

This Magnolia Warbler gave a great view of its underside while it perched on Solomon's Seal (Polygonatum biflorum).

 


9-26-22 Black-throated Green, Nashville and Tennessee Warblers9-26-22 Black-throated Green, Nashville and Tennessee Warblers

 

(Clockwise from left) Black-throated Green, Tennessee and Nashville Warblers decide their next moves.

 

9-28-22 Northern Parula9-28-22 Northern Parula

 

A Northern Parula feels most at home at the bubble in back.

 

9-30-22 Nashville and Tennessee Warblers9-30-22 Nashville and Tennessee Warblers

 

Nashville and Tennessee Warblers are often seen traveling together and can be confusing. The Nashville has the white eye rings.

 

10-1-22 Tennessee and Chestnut-sided Warblers10-1-22 Tennessee and Chestnut-sided Warblers

 

The Tennessee Warbler is the most common of the group, and chums it up here with a Chestnut-sided Warbler in the stream bed.

 

10-6-22 FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female10-6-22 FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female

 

One of my favorite birds, this first fall female Orange-crowned Warbler is a bit on the dull and dingy side of plumage coloration.


10-6-22 FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female10-6-22 FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female
10-6-22 FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female10-6-22 FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female 10-6-22 Tennessee Warbler and FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female10-6-22 Tennessee Warbler and FOS Orange-crowned Warbler first fall female

 

After taking over 100 images, the little bird showed a bit of its often concealed orange crown! And, of course, it's with a female Tennessee Warbler.

 

10-2-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Black-and-blue Salvia10-2-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Black-and-blue Salvia

 

Immature Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are still being seen occasionally, this one nectared at Black-and-blue Salvia. (Not a native plant but full of nectar for hummers at this point in fall.)

 

  10-4-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet10-4-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet

 

Ruby-crowned Kinglets are often flitting about.

 

10-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch10-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

10-2-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch10-2-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

Red-breasted Nuthatches have been heard and seen, it seems there are two around right now. A pair stayed all last winter, so maybe we'll get lucky again this year.

 

10-4-22 FOS Summer Tanager10-4-22 FOS Summer Tanager 10-7-22 Summer Tanager10-7-22 Summer Tanager

 

Summer Tanagers have enjoyed the dripper bath and the bubbler rock.

 

10-5-22 Least Flycatcher10-5-22 Least Flycatcher

9-29-22 Eastern Phoebe9-29-22 Eastern Phoebe

 

Flycatchers have been active. A late Least Flycatcher, the grayest of the Empid group, and an Eastern Phoebe have been in the swampy thicket finding insects to eat.

 

9-25-22 Red-eyed Vireo immature9-25-22 Red-eyed Vireo immature

10-6-22 Blue-headed Vireo10-6-22 Blue-headed Vireo

10-6-22 Blue-headed Vireo10-6-22 Blue-headed Vireo

 

Red-eyed and Blue-headed Vireos love splash-bathing in the bubbler basin and pond.


 

10-2-22 Brown Thrasher eating American Beautyberries10-2-22 Brown Thrasher eating American Beautyberries 10-5-22 Rose-breasted Grosbeak eating American Beautyberries10-5-22 Rose-breasted Grosbeak eating American Beautyberries 10-5-22 American Robin  eating American Beautyberries10-5-22 American Robin eating American Beautyberries

 

American Beautyberries (Callicarpa americana) are taken by many species, including a Brown Thrasher, female Rose-breasted Grosbeak and an American Robin.

 

10-7-22 FOS Brown Creeper10-7-22 FOS Brown Creeper 10-7-22 FOS Brown Creeper10-7-22 FOS Brown Creeper 10-7-22 FOS Brown Creeper10-7-22 FOS Brown Creeper

 

Our FOS Brown Creeper arrived yesterday, 10-7-22. It was quick to investigate the bubbler area, bathe and then politely left its fecal deposit away from the water. Many of the birds do this! They appreciate clean water!

 

Have a nice cuppa and enjoy all the photos!

 

To see all the September birds since 9-23-22, the first full day of fall: September birds

 

To continue with October birds:  October birds

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/10/late-september-part-two-on-10-8-22 Sat, 08 Oct 2022 20:11:30 GMT
Late September, Part One on 9-30-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/9/late-september-part-one-9-30-22 Part One: 9/16-9/23/22

 

As usual, when the birds really start coming in, I get behind! Here are some highlights from the third week of September.

 

9-16-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird immature9-16-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird immature 9-16-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird9-16-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 9-19-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird immature9-19-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird immature

 

We're still seeing Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, but it seems the males have moved on. The second photo was taken on 9/16/22 and a male  was seen the next day. The immature birds investigate everything, bubbler included!

 

9=18-22 Carolina Chickadee with caterpillar on Virginia Creeper9=18-22 Carolina Chickadee with caterpillar on Virginia Creeper

 

All the birds are looking for food, like this Carolina Chickadee that found a caterpillar on leaves of Virginia Creeper(Parthenocissus quinquefolia).

 

9-18-22 Swainson's Thrushes9-18-22 Swainson's Thrushes 9-20-22 House Wren9-20-22 House Wren 9-20-22 American Redstart9-20-22 American Redstart 9-21-22 Black-throated Green Warbler9-21-22 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

Swainson's Thrushes were at the bubbler often one day. A House Wren found a little corner of the basin to drink from and splash in. Perhaps, it felt some protection from that stick overhead? American Redstarts and Black-throated Green Warblers have been seen on numerous days.

  9-22-22 Cooper's Hawk immature9-22-22 Cooper's Hawk immature

 

On the first full day of Fall, 9/22/22, this immature Cooper's Hawk took in the sights and sounds at the bubbler, ensuring that NO birds would dare come around. It finally left and the brave little birds came back. Five warbler species came in that day.

 

9-22-22 Magnolia Warbler9-22-22 Magnolia Warbler 9-22-22 Northern Parula9-22-22 Northern Parula 9-22-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler9-22-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-22-22 FOS Golden-winged Warbler female9-22-22 FOS Golden-winged Warbler female

 

I missed the American Redstart, but was able to catch the Magnolia, Northern Parula and Chestnut-sided. The last warbler was this FOS female Golden-winged. I have yet to see another, very unusual as this species is reliably seen here. It is our most endangered species, and I can only hope they are finding what they need elsewhere.

 

9-22-22 Carolina Chickadee9-22-22 Carolina Chickadee

 

"Hey, birds!"

On Friday, 9/23/22, between 10:37 and 10:46 am, multiple birds of nine warbler species came in along with Ruby-crowned Kinglets and Red-eyed Vireos. They were popping in and out like popcorn! 

 

9-23-22 American Redstart9-23-22 American Redstart

 

American Redstart, immature male (really orangey yellow flanks)

 

9-23-22 FOS Nashville, two Tennessee and Chestnut-sided Warblers9-23-22 FOS Nashville, two Tennessee and Chestnut-sided Warblers

 

Clockwise from top left:  FOS Nashville Warbler, two Tennessee Warblers and Chestnut-sided Warbler 

 

9-23-22 Bay-breasted Warbler and American Redstart9-23-22 Bay-breasted Warbler and American Redstart

 

Bay-breasted Warbler and American Redstart

  9-23-22 Bay-breasted and Black-throated Green Warblers9-23-22 Bay-breasted and Black-throated Green Warblers

 

Bay-breasted and Black-throated Green Warblers

  9-23-22 Black-throated Green and Bay-breasted Warblers9-23-22 Black-throated Green and Bay-breasted Warblers

 

Two Black-throated Green and Bay-breasted Warblers

 

9-23-22 Bay-breasted Warbler and Northern Parula9-23-22 Bay-breasted Warbler and Northern Parula

 

Bay-breasted Warbler and Northern Parula

 

9-23-22 House Finch, Northern Parula and Magnolia Warbler9-23-22 House Finch, Northern Parula and Magnolia Warbler

 

Northern Parula at bubble, Magnolia Warbler and House Finch in foreground


9-23-22 Bay-breasted, Tennessee, Northern Parula and Black-throated Green Warblers9-23-22 Bay-breasted, Tennessee, Northern Parula and Black-throated Green Warblers

 

Rear to foreground:  Bay-breasted, Tennessee, Northern Parula and Black-throated Green Warblers

 

9-23-22 Red-eyed Vireo immature9-23-22 Red-eyed Vireo immature

 

Red-eyed Vireo, immature with brown eye

 

9-23-22 Magnolia Warbler9-23-22 Magnolia Warbler

 

Magnolia Warbler (tail dipped in ink)

 

9-23-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet with insect9-23-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet with insect

 

And last but not least, a Ruby-crowned Kinglet with insect legs hanging out of its mouth! Gotta love it! This is what it's all about, nourishing the birds with the insect foods they need by attracting the insects with native plants.

 

Check back in a few days, I hope to have the last week of September highlights added in by then!

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/9/late-september-part-one-9-30-22 Fri, 30 Sep 2022 22:04:34 GMT
Mid-September update 9-16-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/9/mid-september-update-9-16-22 It has been a bit slower than most falls, yet there are some interesting sightings to share!

 

9-7-22 Eastern Bluebird9-7-22 Eastern Bluebird 9-7-22 Eastern Bluebird fledglings9-7-22 Eastern Bluebird fledglings

 

Eastern Bluebirds have taken to coming to the dripper baths in the afternoons. Some days, I'll see six or seven of them taking turns.

  9-8-22 Magnolia Warbler9-8-22 Magnolia Warbler 9-8-22 Magnolia Warbler9-8-22 Magnolia Warbler 9-8-22 Magnolia Warbler9-8-22 Magnolia Warbler

 

Magnolia Warblers have come in several days. One doesn't always get to see the whole bird, but with this species, if one sees the tail and it has this feature, it is considered unique, diagnostic or Dx for Magnolia Warbler.

 

9-10-22 American Robins9-10-22 American Robins

 

Ahead of a major cool front on 9/10/22, 28 species of birds came into the yard and to the water features. There had to be150 American Robins that day. It was a constant stream of them with three in the basin, and four or five more waiting in the wings at times.

 

9-10-22 Rose-breasted Grosbeak immature9-10-22 Rose-breasted Grosbeak immature
9-10-22 Rose-breasted Grosbeak immature, Northern Flicker and American Robin9-10-22 Rose-breasted Grosbeak immature, Northern Flicker and American Robin

 

A young Rose-breasted Grosbeak wanted a turn! It had to beg for a drink from this Northern Flicker, which had displaced the robins for a bit.

  9-10-22 Magnolia Warbler9-10-22 Magnolia Warbler

9-10-22 Magnolia Warbler9-10-22 Magnolia Warbler

 

What bird is this? Yes, another Magnolia Warbler was in the mix.

 

9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo 9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo 9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo 9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo9-10-22 Yellow-billed Cuckoo

 

Now, we sure don't see this very often! A Yellow-billed Cuckoo slipped down through the canopy to bathe at the sump puddle. This bird had its own 'cuckoo' version of the hokey-pokey! It plopped into a tight spot at the edge, spun a half-turn, splashed a bit, spun again and kept this up for a few minutes before perching to shake off. I only remember a few times that I've seen this species come to water. Remarkable flair, eh?

 

  9-10-22 Red-eyed Vireo9-10-22 Red-eyed Vireo

9-10-22 Red-eyed Vireo immature9-10-22 Red-eyed Vireo immature

 

Red-eyed Vireos were in this mixed flock. The adult has red eyes, the immature bird in the second photo has brown eyes. 

 

9-10-22 Northern Parula female9-10-22 Northern Parula female

9-10-22 Northern Parula female9-10-22 Northern Parula female

 

There were several Northern Parulas, two males and this female. All spent time foraging in the native hydrangeas (Hydrangea arborescens).

 

  9-10-22 FOS Cedar Waxwing immature Bubbler #879-10-22 FOS Cedar Waxwing immature Bubbler #87 9-10-22 FOS Cedar Waxwing immature Bubbler #879-10-22 FOS Cedar Waxwing immature Bubbler #87 9-10-22 FOS Cedar Waxwing immature Bubbler #879-10-22 FOS Cedar Waxwing immature Bubbler #87

 

Two FOS Cedar Waxwings came down near the bubbler. The adult left this immature bird to figure out how to get a drink on its own. This happens often with different species. Cardinals, robins, wrens, etc. will drop off the young birds, leaving them for a life lesson. It reminds me of the "Mother's Day Out" programs when our kids were in nursery school! I'm humbled to think the birds seem to feel some trust in the safety of our sanctuary.

 

 

9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler and Carolina Chickadee9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler and Carolina Chickadee 9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler and Carolina Chickadee9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler and Carolina Chickadee 9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler, Carolina Chickadee and House Finch9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler, Carolina Chickadee and House Finch 9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler  and House Finch9-13-22 Tennessee Warbler and House Finch

 

A Carolina Chickadee was not happy that a Tennessee Warbler was at 'his' bubbler! Eventually, all three birds got what they needed.

 

9-13-22 Magnolia Warbler9-13-22 Magnolia Warbler

 

QUIZ BIRD! (Easy-peasy)

 

4-1-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch4-1-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

Yesterday, I heard the 'little toy horn' of a Red-breasted Nuthatch! It was another 30 minutes before I saw it, working along a branch of the pond cypress. This photo is one I took in April, but it will have to serve until this little guy comes back again. Hopefully, we'll be seeing them this winter. They always bring a smile!

 

9-15-22 Eastern Bluebirds9-15-22 Eastern Bluebirds 9-15-22 Eastern Bluebirds9-15-22 Eastern Bluebirds 9-15-22 Eastern Bluebirds9-15-22 Eastern Bluebirds

 

Yesterday afternoon, the Eastern Bluebirds were back. One did NOT want this male to come near 'his' dripper! So, squabbles happen between the same species, too. There's always something!

 

The heat is on with temperatures going back up into the upper 90's next week.

When will we see some more migrants, is Fall really here yet?

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/9/mid-september-update-9-16-22 Fri, 16 Sep 2022 18:14:31 GMT
ALL ABOUT WARBLERS!! 9-7-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/9/all-about-warblers-9-7-22 Warblers are moving through! And yes, these are all warblers...

 

9-7-22 Black-throated Green Warbler9-7-22 Black-throated Green Warbler

Black-throated Green Warbler

 

8-30-22 Ovenbird8-30-22 Ovenbird 8-30-22 Ovenbird8-30-22 Ovenbird 8-30-22 Ovenbird8-30-22 Ovenbird

Ovenbird

 

8-31-22 Wilson's Warbler female8-31-22 Wilson's Warbler female 8-31-22 Wilson's Warbler female8-31-22 Wilson's Warbler female 9-3-22 Wilson's Warbler female9-3-22 Wilson's Warbler female

Wilson's Warbler, female 

 

8-31-22 Magnolia Warbler8-31-22 Magnolia Warbler 8-31-22 Magnolia Warbler8-31-22 Magnolia Warbler

9-5-22 Magnolia Warbler9-5-22 Magnolia Warbler

Magnolia Warbler 

 

8-31-22 American Redstart first year male8-31-22 American Redstart first year male

American Redstart

 

9-2-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female9-2-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female

9-5-22 Bay=breasted Warbler9-5-22 Bay=breasted Warbler 9-2-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female9-2-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female

9-6-22 Bay-breasted Warbler9-6-22 Bay-breasted Warbler

Bay-breasted Warbler

 

9-2-22 Blue-winged Warbler female9-2-22 Blue-winged Warbler female

9-2-22 Blue-winged Warbler female9-2-22 Blue-winged Warbler female
9-2-22 Blue-winged Warbler female9-2-22 Blue-winged Warbler female

Blue-winged Warbler

 


9-4-22 FOS Canada Warbler female9-4-22 FOS Canada Warbler female 9-4-22 FOS Canada Warbler female9-4-22 FOS Canada Warbler female 9-4-22 FOS Canada Warbler female9-4-22 FOS Canada Warbler female

Canada Warbler, female

  9-6-22 FOS Black-and-white Warbler female9-6-22 FOS Black-and-white Warbler female

Black-and-white Warbler, female

 

9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler 9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler

Blackburnian Warbler, the Firethroat! 

 

9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler

Blackburnian Warbler (what a contortionist!) joined by a Chestnut-sided Warbler 

 

9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler9-6-22 FOS Blackburnian Warbler and Chestnut-sided Warbler

 

 

Words cannot describe!

To see all the warblers since the last post:  Warblers since 8/29/22

 

9-2-22 Eastern Bluebirds9-2-22 Eastern Bluebirds

 

If you'd like to see all the birds since the last post, including scruffy Eastern Bluebirds:  Birds since 8/29/22

 

May this bring a bit of cheer to you...

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/9/all-about-warblers-9-7-22 Thu, 08 Sep 2022 00:12:04 GMT
8-28-22 Late August musings https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/8/8-28-22-august-musings 8-23-22 Color!8-23-22 Color!

The Songbird and Butterfly Garden is a riot of color in August!

 

8-23-22 White Cardinal Flower8-23-22 White Cardinal Flower  

 

This summer, there is a White Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis 'alba'). This is not a plant that I purchased, but a naturally occurring strain. It has a touch of pink in it.

 

8-8-11-5268 RTHU White Lobelia cr8-8-11-5268 RTHU White Lobelia crRuby-throated hummingbird nectaring at white lobelia in our garden

 

In August, 2011, this hummingbird sipped nectar from the flowers of the first one that grew in the garden.The bird may have pollinated the seeds of the plant that is growing right now! Perhaps the seeds have lain dormant, and rain exposed them this year.

 

8-20-22  Meadow Phlox8-20-22 Meadow Phlox 8-23-22 Rose Mallow8-23-22 Rose Mallow

 

Meadow Phlox (Phlox paniculata) and Rose Mallows (Hibiscus lasiocarpus) are also in bloom.

 

8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female 8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female

 

A week ago, the first Chestnut-sided Warblers showed up, all first year females.

 

8-21-22 Least Flycatcher8-21-22 Least Flycatcher

 

A Least Flycatcher was also seen perched and fly-catching from a limb in a Shingle Oak (Quercus imbricaria).

  8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female 8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female 8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female 8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female8-21-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler first fall female

 

The Chestnut-sided Warblers continued to come into the bubbler area all through the day. There were at least two, maybe five or six.

 

8-22-22 Monarch female on Eastern Blazingstar8-22-22 Monarch female on Eastern Blazingstar

 

The next evening, we saw another Monarch in the garden, this time it was a female. So, the following morning, I spent more time looking around the garden. Maybe I'd missed something!

 

8-23-22 Monarch caterpillar on Marsh Milkweed8-23-22 Monarch caterpillar on Marsh Milkweed 8-23-22 Monarch caterpillar #2 on Marsh Milkweed8-23-22 Monarch caterpillar #2 on Marsh Milkweed

 

To my surprise, there were two good-sized Monarch caterpillars on the Marsh Milkweeds! Obviously, a female had visited, perhaps 10 days earlier, to lay the eggs. Other insects were also busy in the garden.

 

8-23-22 Praying Mantis on Marsh Milkweed8-23-22 Praying Mantis on Marsh Milkweed

 

In one patch of milkweed, a Praying Mantis was hiding in plain sight.

 

8-23-22 Augochlorine Sweat Bee on Ironweed8-23-22 Augochlorine Sweat Bee on Ironweed 8-23-22 Native bee on Ironweed8-23-22 Native bee on Ironweed

 

Two native bees were on the Ironweed (Vernonia arkansana).

 

8-23-22 Skipper sp. on Eastern Blazingstar8-23-22 Skipper sp. on Eastern Blazingstar

 

A skipper species sipped nectar on Eastern Blazingstar (Liatris scariosa).

 

8-22-22 Walking stick8-22-22 Walking stick

 

A walking stick was on the railing as I passed by.

 

8-23-22 Barred Owlet8-23-22 Barred Owlet 8-23-22 Barred Owlet8-23-22 Barred Owlet

 

We were finishing dinner when the birds started fussing. Dan saw the large bird land near the base of the Pond Cypress. All this fuss was for a Barred Owlet! It was our first confirmation of a young bird this year. We'd been hearing the family hootenanny quite often at dusk, at dawn and during the night. 
 

8-28-22 Ruby=throated Hummingbird8-28-22 Ruby=throated Hummingbird 8-28-22 Ruby=throated Hummingbird immature8-28-22 Ruby=throated Hummingbird immature

 

As you watch those Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, adult and immature alike, chase each other from feeders and flowers, here are some interesting words to consider that were posted on MOBirds today from Lanny Chambers, licensed hummingbird bander. 

 

"The next week is historically the annual peak for Ruby-throated Hummingbird numbers in Missouri. Bear in mind, this is mainly due to the flow of southward migration, and many of today's birds are not the same individuals you saw yesterday. As for the "4X rule," I think it may be conservative; at my home I almost never see more than two hummers at one time (i.e., in a chase), yet a couple of days ago I banded nine in one afternoon, without a single recapture of a previously-banded bird. So, even yards without hordes of hummingbirds are probably feeding many more individuals than is obvious. A friend and fellow bander in Colorado was feeding 9 gallons of syrup daily last time I talked with him two weeks ago, and expected to reach 12 gallons by Labor Day. A rough rule of thumb is 1,000 birds per gallon per day. Imagine filling 25 30-ounce feeders twice every day!

Keep your feeders clean, and watch for Rufous or other western hummers passing through between now and late December. Some of you will remember the Allen's Hummingbird that visited me on Thanksgiving Day 2008."


 

8-20-22 Cardinal flower8-20-22 Cardinal flower

 

Thank you, Lanny! Typically, I clean and change the feeders every fourth morning. That schedule in this heat and humidity seems to prevent black mold from starting up around the ports.

Enjoy the birds, more migrants will be showing up soon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/8/8-28-22-august-musings Sun, 28 Aug 2022 18:30:58 GMT
8-21-22 Late summer sightings https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/8/8-21-22-late-summer-sightings  

What is August without some fun?

 

8-8-22 Two young raccoons

 

8-8-22 Brown Thrasher8-8-22 Brown Thrasher 8-8-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee8-8-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee 8-11-22 Blue Jays8-11-22 Blue Jays

 

A scruffy Brown Thrasher popped into view one morning, Eastern Wood-Pewees are still being seen. Blue Jays are a part of the daily action!

 

8-12-22 Common Grackle8-12-22 Common Grackle 8-12-22 Common Grackle8-12-22 Common Grackle 8-12-22 Common Grackle eating spider8-12-22 Common Grackle eating spider

 

These young Common Grackles were investigating the pond, one to get water and the second found a spider in that web for its lunch! 

 

8-12-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird8-12-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 8-15-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird8-15-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird

 

Ruby-throated hummingbirds are busy from dawn until dusk, protecting their patch of flowers or a feeder and checking out the bubbler.

 

8-15-22 Baltimore Oriole immature female8-15-22 Baltimore Oriole immature female 8-15-22 American Robin and Baltimore Oriole immature female8-15-22 American Robin and Baltimore Oriole immature female 8-15-22 Baltimore Oriole immature female8-15-22 Baltimore Oriole immature female 8-15-22 Baltimore Oriole immature female and House Finch8-15-22 Baltimore Oriole immature female and House Finch

 

Another migrant arrived on Monday, 8-15-22. It was a young female Baltimore Oriole. The bird was thirsty!

 

8-15-22 Waved Sphinx Moth8-15-22 Waved Sphinx Moth

 

A Waved Sphinx moth (Ceratomia undulosa) flew in while I was photographing that same day. Its host plants are ash, oak, hawthorn and fringe tree. Fully grown caterpillars pupate underground and the adults probably do not feed.

Waved Sphinx Moth


8-20-22 Eastern Blazingstar8-20-22 Eastern Blazingstar 8-20-22 Marsh Milkweed8-20-22 Marsh Milkweed

 

Yesterday morning, the Eastern Blazingstar (Liatris scariosa) was blooming nicely and so was the Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata). Still, there was no evidence yet of Monarch caterpillars on the milkweed.

 

8-20-22 FOY Monarch8-20-22 FOY Monarch

 

A bit later when I checked, there was the first Monarch of the year! It was flying about, sipping nectar and then resting on a coneflower head when I found it again.

 

8-20-22 Monarch on E. Blazingstar8-20-22 Monarch on E. Blazingstar 8-20-22 FOY Monarch on Marsh Milkweed8-20-22 FOY Monarch on Marsh Milkweed

8-20-22 FOY Monarch on Marsh Milkweed8-20-22 FOY Monarch on Marsh Milkweed 8-20-22 FOY Monarch on Ironweed8-20-22 FOY Monarch on Ironweed

Monarch male and femaleMonarch male and female

 

It was a nice, fresh looking male as indicated by the thinner veins with the black spots or swollen veins on the hind wings. Last photo shows both sexes for a comparison.

 

Today has been a busy day with the cool front that came in overnight. I'll save those stories until next time! 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/8/8-21-22-late-summer-sightings Sun, 21 Aug 2022 20:23:42 GMT
8-8-22 Spicebush Swallowtail Caterpillars and more https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/8/8-8-22-spicebush-caterpillars It's August, and daylight is a bit less each day, nearly an hour lost since the Summer Solstice.

However, it seems there is more activity in this condensed time frame.

There is always something going on in a native garden!

 

7-31-22 Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)7-31-22 Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)

 

We were having breakfast one morning when I noticed the spicebush (Lindera benzoin) near the pond had a folded leaf. Caterpillars! I found quite a few on the different plants in the east beds.

 

7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar leaf tent7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar leaf tent 7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar in leaf tent7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar in leaf tent 7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar 7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar7-30-22 Spicebush Caterpillar 7-31-22 Spicebush Caterpillar and egg debris7-31-22 Spicebush Caterpillar and egg debris

8-4-19 Spicebush Swallowtail  female laying eggs on Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)8-4-19 Spicebush Swallowtail female laying eggs on Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)

 

Here is a female Spicebush Swallowtail laying eggs in 2020. I've been seeing one around, they're quick about it.

 

7-26-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee7-26-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee 8-2-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee immature8-2-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee immature 8-8-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee8-8-22 Eastern Wood-Pewee

 

Eastern Wood-Pewees have been busy catching flying insects in the woodland and near the pond.

 

7-31-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird7-31-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 7-31-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird7-31-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird

 

Ruby-throated Hummingbird numbers are picking up.

 

8-6-22 Northern Cardinals8-6-22 Northern Cardinals 8-7-22 Northern Cardinal juvenile8-7-22 Northern Cardinal juvenile 8-7-22 Northern Cardinal8-7-22 Northern Cardinal

 

Northern Cardinals are still feeding their begging young. The two males look a bit worse for the wear as they are losing feathers in summer molt.

 

7-26-22 Red-bellied Woodpecker juvenile7-26-22 Red-bellied Woodpecker juvenile 8-8-22 Red-bellied Woodpecker juvenile8-8-22 Red-bellied Woodpecker juvenile

 

A young Red-bellied Woodpecker has been teasing sunflower hearts out of the feeder with its tongue.

  8-8-22 American Robin and Northern Flicker8-8-22 American Robin and Northern Flicker 8-8-22 Blue Jay8-8-22 Blue Jay

 

Dan's weather station has recorded 17.67" of rain since 7-1-22. Our whole yard is basically a rain garden, but this has been really challenging. It has been so hot, birds are still coming in to cool off, bathe and get sips of water. An American Robin and Northern Flicker were in the basin today, and a Blue Jay drank at the bubbler. 

 

7-9-22 Pawpaw Fruit (Asimina triloba)7-9-22 Pawpaw Fruit (Asimina triloba)

 

There are some bright spots. Our little grove of Pawpaws (Asimina triloba) now has one tree with fruit. 
 

8-5-22 Ironweed (Vernonia Arkansan)8-5-22 Ironweed (Vernonia Arkansan)

 

Ironweed is blooming, and the hummingbirds have been drinking nectar from the purple blossoms. 

 

8-8-22 Syrphid fly at Cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis)8-8-22 Syrphid fly at Cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis)

 

Cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinals) is a favorite of the hummingbirds, too. But look carefully and you'll see a tiny syrphid fly hovering on the right side of the brilliant red spire.

 

8-8-22 Tiger Swallowtail on Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)8-8-22 Tiger Swallowtail on Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)

 

Today, a Tiger Swallowtail was on the Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata). But when will we see the officially endangered Monarch? 

 

Take care, stay cool!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/8/8-8-22-spicebush-caterpillars Mon, 08 Aug 2022 21:54:28 GMT
Be on the lookout! 7-26-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/7/be-on-the-lookout-7-26-21  

First, let's talk about the "Passion Butterfly".

 

8-21-04 Passiflora incarnata8-21-04 Passiflora incarnata

 

This is Missouri's native Passion flower, Passiflora incarnata, photographed at Shaw Nature Reserve in August 2004, It's a lovely flowering vine and some of you may have it in your gardens. 

 

 

Recently, we were visiting family and stayed in a guesthouse on a property in the Central Valley of California. The property is a good size with a garden of herbs and fruiting plants and trees such as raspberries, peaches, plums and apricots. This walkway was covered with a different species of Passion flower vine and it was attracting Gulf Fritillary butterflies, aka the Passion Butterfly.

 

Gulf Fritillaries July '22

 

The female butterflies lay eggs communally. The video shows a small area of one vine, all three vines were busy with butterfly activity! We had never before seen so many butterflies of one species in one place. We were in awe.

 

 

Our grandsons were as fascinated as we were. They easily counted over 25 caterpillars in seconds. Some were very small. Our younger grandson told us he learned about the Monarch and saw the different caterpillar stages but never saw an egg. Challenge accepted! We looked for them.

 

 

The closer we looked, the more we found! Eggs are pale yellow when first laid. The tiny caterpillar had eaten its way out of the egg case and had begun to feed on a flower bud. Eggs are laid on every part of the plant, much like the Monarch does with milkweed.

 

 

We found caterpillars just forming a chrysalis, some completed and one that was empty.

 

 

Morning temperatures were around 55 - 60 degrees and the butterflies rested until the air warmed. Then they were busy nectaring in the garden, on plants like the lavender. One butterfly was found in its final resting place on a table. 

 

This butterfly is rarely seen in the St. Louis area, but my friend, Dennis Bozzay has found them in his garden, twice! Thanks, Dennis for sharing your beautiful photos.

 

10-14-17 By Dennis Bozzay10-14-17 By Dennis Bozzay 10-14-17 By Dennis Bozzay10-14-17 By Dennis Bozzay

Two photos by Dennis Bozzay

 

The first time Dennis recorded one was on 10-14-17. It was finding nectar on Tropical Milkweed (Asclepias curassavica). This plant is not recommended in areas where it will not die back in the winter because it can harbor a parasite of Monarchs. To find out more about its effects:

 

Tropical Milkweed - A No-grow

 

9-5-18 By Dennis Bozzay9-5-18 By Dennis Bozzay 9-5-18 By Dennis Bozzay9-5-18 By Dennis Bozzay
Two photos by Dennis Bozzay
 

Dennis' second sighting of a Gulf Fritillary was on 9-5-18. Keep a lookout for this butterfly over the next few months, you may get lucky, and see one, too. Here's more on the species:

Gulf Fritillary

 

We returned on the hottest day of the year at 101.9 degrees. Monday, 7-25-22 was a very busy day in the woodland. A cool front had pushed through so birds were very active. It was still really dry so birds were constantly at the water. 

 

7-25-22 Northern Parula7-25-22 Northern Parula

 

A deeply marked male Northern Parula was at the bubbler early. It is a nesting migratory species in Missouri, and we've been seeing them. 

 

7-25-22 American Robin7-25-22 American Robin

 

American Robins were grabbing berries off the Rough-leaf dogwoods (Cornus drummondii). Then, I noticed two small birds at the bubbler. One flew into the hydrangeas for cover and the second bird was in and out. 

 

7-25-22 Tennessee Warbler NEW early fall record7-25-22 Tennessee Warbler NEW early fall record 7-25-22 Tennessee Warbler NEW early fall record7-25-22 Tennessee Warbler NEW early fall record

 

Tennessee Warblers!? Well, they're a migrant that usually doesn't show up until September. I checked for the earliest date they had been recorded in fall which was "August 9 or 10, 1985" and my sighting was two weeks earlier than that date. So, I filled out my eBird checklist to report it. It was confirmed by Josh Uffman and the Missouri documentation form was then completed. These Tennessee Warblers gave us a new state record.

To see every bird species recorded in Missouri, download this free pdf:

 The Status and Distribution of Birds of Missouri

 

7-25-22 Eastern Bluebird7-25-22 Eastern Bluebird 7-25-22 Eastern Bluebird7-25-22 Eastern Bluebird 7-25-22 Hairy Woodpecker juvenile7-25-22 Hairy Woodpecker juvenile 7-25-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird juvenile7-25-22 Ruby-throated Hummingbird juvenile 7-25-22 Blue Jay7-25-22 Blue Jay

 

Birds were busy all day long. Eastern Bluebirds, a Gray Catbird and for the first time, a juvenile Hairy Woodpecker came to the bubbler. That's a big bill for that little bird! Young Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are now chasing each other and a Blue Jay was seen eating the fruit of Blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium).

 

Rain!

 

Last night, the rain came in torrents. Flash flood warnings woke us during the night. Yesterday, the sump puddle was barely 2 feet wide, this morning we had a slowly draining lake. But we're okay and grateful for the rain. It had just let up as I wrote this and our weather station measured 5.65" of rain since midnight. At 3:30 am, the rain rate was 12.5" per hour. Some places in the area had twice as much. A deluge! 

 

We hope you all are safe!

Keep your eyes peeled now for butterflies and migratory birds, many species are on the move.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/7/be-on-the-lookout-7-26-21 Wed, 27 Jul 2022 01:50:06 GMT
Mid-July! 7-15-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/7/mid-july-7-15-22 Time flies, it's already mid-July!

We've lost 15 minutes of daylight since the Summer Solstice.

 

7-4-22 Blue Jay7-4-22 Blue Jay

7-8-22 Blue Jays

 

Blue Jays have raised a healthy brood. Seven have been coming to the bubbler, chasing each other and the last fledging is still begging.

 

7-5-22 Northern Parula juvenile male with caterpillar7-5-22 Northern Parula juvenile male with caterpillar 7-5-22 Northern Parula juvenile male7-5-22 Northern Parula juvenile male 7-5-22 Northern Parula juvenile male7-5-22 Northern Parula juvenile male

 

This is the first young male Northern Parula at the bubbler this year, with a meal! It is one of the smallest warblers, averaging 4.5", about the same as a chickadee and a bit larger than a Ruby-throated Hummingbird, which maxes out at 3.5".

 

7-5-22 Red-shouldered Hawk Bubbler #1257-5-22 Red-shouldered Hawk Bubbler #125

 

This Red-shouldered Hawk became bubbler bird species #125 on 6-30-22. It is larger than both American Crow and Barred Owl and can be 24" in length with a wingspan of 32"-50". So, it takes the prize for the largest bubbler bird yet. On 7-5-22, it came in shortly after the Northern Parula. The next photo is a composite of both birds to show their size difference.

 

7-5-22 Red-shouldered Hawk and Northern Parula comparison7-5-22 Red-shouldered Hawk and Northern Parula comparison

 

From the smallest to the largest, the bubbler delivers!

 

7-5-22 9:04 am Red-shouldered Hawk Bubbler Bird #125 7-5-22 9:05 am Red-shouldered Hawk and juvenile

 

It is always amazing to watch how quickly birds take to the bubbler. They feel comfortable here and know they can get water on these hot days. The adult has already shown its offspring that this is a safe refuge. 

 

7-14-22 Red-shouldered Hawk juvenile with vole7-14-22 Red-shouldered Hawk juvenile with vole

 

Yesterday morning, I saw the young bird catch a vole to eat on its own!

 

7-5-22 Eastern Phoebe7-5-22 Eastern Phoebe 7-10-22 Eastern Phoebe7-10-22 Eastern Phoebe 7-10-22 Eastern Phoebe7-10-22 Eastern Phoebe

 

Eastern Phoebes have been actively catching insects, drinking at the dripper baths and splash-bathing in the stream bed. For the first time, the pair that nested under the gazebo raised two broods.

 

7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird juveniles7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird juveniles

7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird juvenile7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird juvenile 7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird 7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird 7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird juveniles7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird juveniles 7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird7-10-22 Eastern Bluebird

 

Eastern Bluebirds are back for water and food again. There were at least five young ones that came in with this male. It looks like the male is pretty fascinated with the dripping water.

 

Two ladies walking by waved the other day and told us how much they love our yard. "Don't you have deer? They're eating my hostas!" said one. "Oh, yes, we have deer!" I replied. Day and night, we have deer. No hostas, though they forage on violets, hydrangeas, and one doe even waded into the pond to eat water lilies. Yes, eating water lilies for two.
 

 

7-5-22 3:41 am Three Bucks

7-5-22 2:06 pm Doe and fawn

7-13-22 Hardy Water Lily (Nymphaea odorata)7-13-22 Hardy Water Lily (Nymphaea odorata)

 

We fenced the pond, the water lilies recovered and we had our first bloom a few days ago. Let's face it, we all need a healthy environment, so we're doing our best to live with nature by providing native habitat and spreading the word about the benefits to all of us. Perhaps you just need a nudge to take the plunge? If you missed the Native Plant Tour in June, there's another way to see some inspiring native gardens! 

 

7-9-22 Fire Pink (Silene regia) at Woldum's Garden7-9-22 Fire Pink (Silene regia) at Woldum's Garden

Royal Catchfly (Silene regia) in the Woldum Garden, Certified "Gold" with Bring Conservation Home
 

Last Saturday, we visited our friends, Dennis and Katherine Woldum to see their lovely garden. They are participating in a relatively new program called St. Louis Open Yards, aka Native Gardens for Charity. Dennis and Katherine learned about the program from Mitch Leachman, co-founder of St. Louis Audubon Society's Bring Conservation Home Program. Mitch is now co-ordinating this new program with assistance from some great volunteers so more native gardens can be seen in their prime. Owners choose their favorite charity and in this case, Dennis and Katherine chose Caring Solutions which offers 24-hour care for adult developmentally disabled in the Metro area. Katherine said, “After the age of 18, there is diminished assistance from Missouri. As the parents or relatives age, it is important to have help in place. They do a wonderful job with the limited resources they have. We are proud to help them.”

 

If you live in the St. Louis Metro area, check out Open Yards! For a modest fee, you can visit gardens by registering in advance on the website calendar. The homeowners choose the days when their gardens will be open and you pick a time that's available. There are several search Categories, such as shade, rain, bird-focused or pollinator gardens to name a few. Different sized gardens are included. With this opportunity to walk through some beautiful, life-filled gardens, you’ll get lots of ideas on top-performing native plants and design tips as well. Many of these gardens are certified through the Bring Conservation Home Program. Read all about it, sign up for some visual treats and give back to our community at the same time! It's a win-win!

 

St. Louis Open Yards

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/7/mid-july-7-15-22 Fri, 15 Jul 2022 12:47:48 GMT
It's a steamy Fourth of July 7-4-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/7/its-a-steamy-fourth-of-july-7-4-22 7-4-227-4-22 7-4-227-4-22

 

Hope you all had a safe and pleasant Fourth of July!

This tiny Praying Mantis was within the bouquet I had picked from the garden, but it was safely taken to another plant so it could continue preying on small pests. A Praying Mantis is an Insect, in the Order of Mantids.

Praying Mantis
 

7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult

 

Yesterday, Dan noticed this critter on the screen. Neither of us knew what it was or what was happening to it. Was it an insect, a spider or a true bug? Spiders have eight legs, and they are Arachnids, a separate class of animals. Boy, it's time to take a class again. "All bugs are insects, but not all insects are bugs!" So much to keep straight. Looked like six legs on this one at first.

 

7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult 7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult 7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult7-3-22 Wheel Bug molting into adult

 

Aha! As this true bug molted from its last nymph stage into an adult, we recognized it as a Wheel Bug. Believe me, the one thing I do know is that they will bite if handled and provoked. An entomologist once told me that a Wheel Bug's bite is worse than a hundred hornet stings. Lesson learned. That experience is not on my bucket list!

 

Wheel Bug (Arilus cristatus) on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) pushing Bumblebee offWheel Bug (Arilus cristatus) on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) pushing Bumblebee off Wheel Bug (Arilus cristatus) on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)Wheel Bug (Arilus cristatus) on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)

10-5-19 Wheel Bug10-5-19 Wheel Bug

10-8-21 Wheel Bug10-8-21 Wheel Bug

 

I have had encounters with this true bug which can be impressive at 1 1/2" long. Once, I almost put my hand down on the stone wall before I realized it was there. And, then there was the time it was inside the lens hood of my camera setup. I was able to use a soft broom and help it to fly off. They are the largest true bug, and a beneficial creature because they eat garden pests. We don't use insecticides because we know that these helpful critters are part of our natural world, keeping the ecosystem in balance.

"Live and let live!"

Wheel Bug

 

6-24-22 Northern Parula female6-24-22 Northern Parula female

 

Birds have been coming to the water features often on these hot days. A young female Northern Parula has visited several times.

 

6-28-22 Northern Cardinal juvenile6-28-22 Northern Cardinal juvenile

 

Juvenile Northern Cardinals still have their little dark beaks.

 

6-24-22 Northern Flicker juvenile #16-24-22 Northern Flicker juvenile #1 6-25-22 Northern Flicker juvenile #16-25-22 Northern Flicker juvenile #1 6-25-22 Northern Flicker juvenile #26-25-22 Northern Flicker juvenile #2

 

Two young Northern Flickers, both males, usually come in together to forage and learn about their world.

 

6-28-22 Northern Parula6-28-22 Northern Parula 6-28-22 Northern Parula6-28-22 Northern Parula

 

An adult Northern Parula seems to prefer the pond for its bathing. 

 

6-25-22 Gray Catbird6-25-22 Gray Catbird

 

This Gray Catbird came out into the open, making all sorts of calls one morning. 


6-28-22 American Goldfinch6-28-22 American Goldfinch

 

An American Goldfinch seemed entranced by the dancing sunbeams on the water.

 

6-30-22 Brown Thrasher6-30-22 Brown Thrasher

 

We're getting more frequent views of the Brown Thrashers, though we still haven't seen a young one.

 

7-1-22 Wood Thrush7-1-22 Wood Thrush

 

On 7-1-22, not a Brown Thrasher but a Wood Thrush was at the bubbler again. This is the only photo I managed, it's the first time I've had one in July. There were several robins trying to bathe and the Wood Thrush couldn't muster the courage to get closer to the basin.

 

7-1-22 Wood Thrush

 

Here is a 2 minute video of the Wood Thrush which you'll see front and center in the beginning. As you can see, the bird keeps looking at the pond but wisely assesses that it's too deep.

  7-1-22 Red-shouldered Hawk7-1-22 Red-shouldered Hawk 7-1-22 Red-shouldered Hawk immature7-1-22 Red-shouldered Hawk immature

 

Finally, we are seeing the Red-shouldered Hawks come in again. The adult (top) has been in several times and we've also seen the immature one. It's wonderful to know there has been a successful nesting this year. Helping breeding birds and migrants is the goal!

 

Stay safe, stay cool!

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/7/its-a-steamy-fourth-of-july-7-4-22 Tue, 05 Jul 2022 02:52:18 GMT
Summer Days now 6-24-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/6/summer-days-now-6-24-22 Quiz answers first! 

Thank you all for being patient, hope you had fun and did well!

 

5-2-22 Orange-crowned Warbler5-2-22 Orange-crowned Warbler
 

1. Orange-crowned Warbler

 

5-4-22 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers5-4-22 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers
 

2. Blue-winged Warbler, in front

3. Golden-winged Warbler, in back

 

5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler, "tail dipped in ink"5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler, "tail dipped in ink"
 

4. Magnolia Warbler with "tail dipped in ink" which is diagnostic for this species

 

5-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler female5-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler female
 

5. Blackburnian Warbler, female

 

5-11-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female5-11-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female
 

6. Bay-breasted Warbler, female

 

 

Now for the latest summer update...

 

6-10-22 Hairy Woodpeckers6-10-22 Hairy Woodpeckers 6-12-22 Downy Woodpeckers6-12-22 Downy Woodpeckers

 

Nesters have been busy finding food for their fledglings. A Hairy Woodpecker teaches its young about suet and a Downy Woodpecker feeds hidden insect morsels to its offspring.

 

5-17-22 Eastern Beebalm (Monarda bradburiana)5-17-22 Eastern Beebalm (Monarda bradburiana)

5-17-22 Bumble Bee on Eastern Beebalm (Monarda bradburiana)5-17-22 Bumble Bee on Eastern Beebalm (Monarda bradburiana)
6-16-22 American Goldfinch female on Eastern Beebalm6-16-22 American Goldfinch female on Eastern Beebalm 6-16-22 American Goldfinch on Eastern Beebalm6-16-22 American Goldfinch on Eastern Beebalm

 

American Goldfinches have been eating the seeds of Eastern Beebalm (Monarda bradburiana). It was in full bloom on 5-17-22. By not cutting back the spent blooms, the seeds feed the birds and help to enlarge the patch. This plant has done better here on a dry slope than anywhere else I've tried it. It attracts hummingbirds and other pollinators and also is a host plant to 9 different moth and butterfly species.

 

6-22-22 House Wren juvenile6-22-22 House Wren juvenile
6-16-22 Song Sparrow6-16-22 Song Sparrow 6-18-22 Gray Catbird6-18-22 Gray Catbird

 

From the young House Wren and Song Sparrow to larger birds like the Gray Catbird, traffic has been constant at our water features.

  6-20-22 Northern Parula6-20-22 Northern Parula 6-20-22 Northern Parula6-20-22 Northern Parula 6-21-22 Northern Parula female6-21-22 Northern Parula female

 

Northern Parula warblers have been at the pond and bubbler on several days now. I've heard the male singing the last couple weeks and I think they nest in the neighborhood, possibly high in a neighbor's sycamore. The last few years, they've been coming in for food and water in June.

 

6-22-22 Brown Thrasher6-22-22 Brown Thrasher 6-22-22 Brown Thrasher6-22-22 Brown Thrasher

 

Brown Thrashers have been seen almost daily, foraging and looking for a drink or bath. 

 

6-22-22 Blue Jay6-22-22 Blue Jay 6-22-22 Blue Jay6-22-22 Blue Jay

6-20-22 American Robin6-20-22 American Robin 6-20-22 American Robins6-20-22 American Robins

 

Blue Jays and American Robins love to cool off, even if it means a confrontation to get their way.

 

6-19-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher preening6-19-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher preening 6-19-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher sunning6-19-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher sunning
6-19-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher singing6-19-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher singing 6-21-22 Bubbler Bird #80 for 2022 - Blue-gray Gnatcatcher6-21-22 Bubbler Bird #80 for 2022 - Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

 

Blue-gray Gnatcatchers have been heard and seen a lot lately. One day, I noticed the female preening and the male apparently taking a dust bath in the garden. It's a behavior we've seen in species like hummingbirds, titmice and flycatchers. The male then flew into another small tree and began singing. The following day, I just caught the female as it bathed in the bubbler. 

 

Interested in Adding Moving Water to your garden? Look at this page:

 

Simple Ways to Add Moving Water

 

If you'd like information about Bubbler Maintenance and more, check out this page:

 

All Water Feature Links

 

Stay cool...

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/6/summer-days-now-6-24-22 Fri, 24 Jun 2022 21:22:03 GMT
Let's talk about warblers! 6-13-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/6/lets-talk-about-warblers-6-13-22 WARBLERS!

 

It's miserably hot here and over much of the country,

so like many of you, I'm trying to stay cool inside today.

 

Post-spring migration, we birders tend to feel bereft of 'our' warblers! We can never get enough of them in their breeding splendor. So, how many warblers can one hope to see in spring in our area? There are three references that help determine this, links will open in a new tab.

 

First, the checklist:  Birds of Missouri Checklist

 

Scroll down to #386 Ovenbird to look at the warbler species. There are 42 species listed, but we sure won't see them all. You can click on each name to see a photo and more information from All About Birds. You can view the Seasonal Status and Abundance Status. This is important to help understand when a bird should be here and whether it's common, accidental or even extinct. 

 

Second, obtain a free download:  The Status and Distribution of Birds of Missouri, 2nd Edition

 

This is the most in-depth, go-to reference on all bird species seen here in our state. It has records of early and late dates, habitats where it is most likely to find certain birds and so much more. 

 

Third, get a free publication from the Missouri Department of Conservation:  Enjoying Missouri's Birds

 

 

This recently revised booklet, mentioned before, is great to have on hand to check the charts on when and where a bird is most likely to be seen and how rare it may be. You can obtain this free 42-page booklet in several ways. Just go to any of the MDC regional offices or nature centers and ask for it, or you can call or email to have it sent to you. It's a hot item!
 

Call MDC:  573-751-4115 and ask to be connected with Publications and ask for #W00002

Email MDC:  pubstaff@mdc.mo.gov

 

OR, join the Missouri Birding Society and this booklet will come as part of your new member packet!  Missouri Birding Society

 

Here in our Shady Oaks Sanctuary, we have documented 35 species of warblers over 25+ years. Some are identified by song, some by sight, some have been photographed. Even though species may have ancestors that have been here and put our location into their genetic code, there is no guarantee that offspring of that species will show up every year. And that is the pure and simple reason we keep looking, we never know what may drop in with a mixed flock and forage through our layered canopy or drink at the bubbler! 

 

FOY 87 Ovenbird 5-1-19FOY 87 Ovenbird 5-1-19
 Ovenbird


Ovenbirds are typically seen every year, though they are not always as cooperative as the bird you see in the photo above.

 

4-30-22 Yellow Warbler singing4-30-22 Yellow Warbler singing

Yellow Warbler

 

This year was exceptional for Yellow Warblers because we saw at least one on each of 12 different days. It is a common transient. 

 

4-29-22 Pine Warbler4-29-22 Pine Warbler

Pine Warbler

 

Pine Warblers are more often heard in early March as they forage in pines in our neighborhood. This long-tailed warbler was here on several days,  4-29-22 thru 5-1-22 as a northbound migrant. I was surprised to see it then and it is rare at that time but regularly seen in the St. Louis area. I discovered this detail when I checked my copy of The Status and Distribution of Birds of Missouri.

 

4-29-20 Worm-eating Warbler4-29-20 Worm-eating Warbler

Worm-eating Warbler

 

I enjoyed watching a Worm-eating Warbler on 4-23-22 while it was singing in a Redbud (Cercis canadensis), but I was unable to get on it quickly enough to photograph. The one above was foraging in an American Elm (Ulmus americana) on 4-29-20. 

 

Yellow-breasted ChatYellow-breasted Chat

Yellow-breasted Chat

 

On 7-30-14, a bird that was considered a wood-warbler at the time visited our garden, a Yellow-breasted Chat. Its status in the wood-warbler family was frequently questioned for many reasons. "It had many traits atypical of wood-warblers--large size, eclectic vocal repertoire, behavior and certain anatomical features. In 2017, it was elevated to its own family, Icteriidae." So, I wanted to share this story because with genetics, more is being learned all the time about where birds should be placed in the taxonomic order. So, it is not included in our wood-warbler count.

(Quote paraphrased from Birds of the World, subscription reference through Cornell Laboratory)

 

Black-throated Blue Warbler on 5-13-05Black-throated Blue Warbler on 5-13-05 Black-throated Blue female 9-13-17Black-throated Blue female 9-13-17

Black-throated Blue Warbler

 

This bird is a rare migrant, especially in spring when it is considered the 'holy grail' of migration here in our area. A male came to the Bubbler on 5-13-05, I could barely catch my breath it was so exciting to see! I called my dear friend, Tina Weyman. Somehow, she understood me during that early morning call when I said, "Buh-buh-buh-Black-throated Buh-buh-Blue!" And, Tina made it here in time to see it, too. 

 

Years later, a female came by in the fall on 9-13-17 and I followed it for a couple hours. This species is rare anytime, maybe 1-2 are seen each year in the eastern part of Missouri. Most springs, this species goes unrecorded in the west.

 

5-9-22 FOY Bay-breasted Warbler5-9-22 FOY Bay-breasted Warbler

Bay-breasted Warbler

 

From the uncommon Bay-breasted Warbler to the rarer species, birders feel the need to see every one each spring. And if we don't see them, we start looking again in late summer with hopes of adding them to our year lists in the fall! Welcome to the obsessive life of birding!

 

REVIEW AND QUIZ?

 

To review the warblers of this past spring, begin here: Warblers beginning 4-20-22

 

All the photos are now in the galleries, so here are a few if you want to quiz yourselves. Answers will be posted next time!

 

 

5-2-22 Orange-crowned Warbler5-2-22 Orange-crowned Warbler

1.

5-4-22 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers5-4-22 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers

2. In front

3. In back

5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler, "tail dipped in ink"5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler, "tail dipped in ink"

4.

5-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler female5-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler female

5.

5-11-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female5-11-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female

6.

 

Stay cool, stay safe!

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/6/lets-talk-about-warblers-6-13-22 Mon, 13 Jun 2022 19:10:49 GMT
Migration wanes, into June now 6-4-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/6/migration-wanes-into-june-now-6-4-22 Most migrating birds have moved on to breeding grounds, though species are still coming through!

Check out Birdcast for movement just last night:  St. Louis County, June 3, 2022

 

Species that nest here have stayed in the area.

Resident breeding birds have been busy raising young!

All of these species need the same things: cover, places to raise young, insect foods and fresh water. 

 

4-28-22 Blackpoll Warbler4-28-22 Blackpoll Warbler

5-1-22 Blackpoll Warbler female5-1-22 Blackpoll Warbler female

 

Birdcast had predicted a high influx of birds on Saturday and Sunday nights, 5-7-22 and 5-8-22. Sure enough, Monday, 5-9-22 was my personal 'big day' with 53 species for the day, including 15 warblers. Blackpoll Warblers fly the longest overwater journey of any songbird species - nearly 1,800 miles non-stop over the Atlantic Ocean to their wintering grounds in South America. 

Blackpoll Warbler

 

This species is rarely seen in the fall in Missouri because of its route over the Atlantic. Birders know they better see it in spring to be sure to get it for the year. However, our yard hosted a young female that took the shorter route and this sighting became the third fall record for Missouri. This event was covered in our very first blog post on October 14, 2013. Time sure flies like the birds!

Wildlife at Shady Oaks

 

4-30-22 Yellow Warbler with a caterpillar!4-30-22 Yellow Warbler with a caterpillar! 5-9-22 Yellow Warbler female5-9-22 Yellow Warbler female

 

Yellow Warblers have been seen here more this year than ever before. They nest over much of North America, including in Missouri, and prefer habitats like wet woods or areas with trees like willows near streams. That's where they'll find the most insect foods. See if you agree that their song says, "sweet, sweet, sweet, I'm so sweet!" It's an easy one to learn.

Yellow Warbler

 

Years ago, I was determined to learn bird songs. It was a struggle to begin, but slowly, they started to stick. Start with the birds you hear every day, then prepare over the winter for the deluge of new birds that arrive with migration. It's still a struggle, but there's a FREE app for that!

Listen to birds using an app called Merlin Bird ID:   Merlin

 

Merlin is another tool to add to your toolbox, so to speak. We still need to use our own ears and eyes to confirm the songs recorded. But this app has improved tremendously since it was first introduced, and it's fun to help you be aware of the birds around you. 

 

4-29-22 Eastern Bluebird4-29-22 Eastern Bluebird 5-5-22 Eastern Bluebird with insect5-5-22 Eastern Bluebird with insect 4-30-22 Eastern Bluebird female4-30-22 Eastern Bluebird female
5-10-22 Eastern Bluebird carrying fecal sac away5-10-22 Eastern Bluebird carrying fecal sac away
4-30-22 Eastern Bluebird4-30-22 Eastern Bluebird
 

This spring we had our first nesting pair of Eastern Bluebirds. They managed beautifully and were attentive to their feeding and housekeeping duties. The male is shown with a fecal sac which was carried far from the nest site. On 5-12-22, it was time for the young birds to fledge. Once they leave the nest box, they will not return. It's a day when everyone is nervous and excited! 

 

5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird female chattering to fledgling in cover5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird female chattering to fledgling in cover 5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird fledgling5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird fledgling

 

One by one, they left the box. The female was calling to them. I could imagine something like, "Keep your heads down! Watch out for those big birds! Stay low!" 

 

5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird fledgling5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird fledgling

 

One fledgling managed to fly up into a spice bush (Lindera benzoin). Well-camouflaged, it waited for an adult to bring more food. 

 

5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird with fledgling5-12-22 Eastern Bluebird with fledgling

 

How all five of those little birds managed to have room to exercise their wings before their entrance into the big wide world, I'll never know! The male returned once to the box on 5-29-22 and called a few times, then flew. According to my sources, that would have been the earliest day to begin a new nest, seventeen days after fledgling. Maybe this is their first brood and they're taking a well-earned break! Will keep you posted.

 

5-29-22 Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)5-29-22 Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)

 

While I was weeding in front one day, I heard the familiar buzzing of a hummingbird flying by. I looked up to see it enjoying the sweet nectar of the Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens). Those of you who have this plant must enjoy their visits, too. It's a bit more gratifying to see them at a natural food source that you've planted and nurtured!
 

 

5-29-22 Northern Cardinal eggshell5-29-22 Northern Cardinal eggshell 5-29-22 Northern Cardinal nest in Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle5-29-22 Northern Cardinal nest in Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle

 

As I worked up the front walk, I saw a broken egg shell from a Northern Cardinal's nest. Were the young just hatching? I had been so busy watching birds in back that I had missed this nest being built! The female and male scolded me for getting too close. So, no more weeding will be done in that area for a while! Minimal disturbance, that's our motto here.

 

5-12-22 Northern Cardinal fledgling5-12-22 Northern Cardinal fledgling 5-12-22 Northern Cardinal fledgling #25-12-22 Northern Cardinal fledgling #2 5-30-22 Northern Cardinal fledglings5-30-22 Northern Cardinal fledglings

 

There are at least two other pairs of Northern Cardinals that have young. One nest is in the other Coral Trumpet vine that has been around much longer with more cover. The other nest, well, I'm not sure where it is, but the adults bring their young to the bubbler area and have me babysit while they look for food!

 

Back in February, 2011, I had the first opportunity to meet Doug Tallamy, mentor and author of Bringing Nature Home, Nature's Best Hope and The Nature of Oaks. I couldn't wait to tell him all the work we had been doing to create habitat and how many birds we had seen in our yard. Then, he zinged me with, "Yes, but how many nesters do you have?" "Oh, um, not sure..have to think about that," was my weak reply. Since my awareness has been raised, we've both learned what we need to do to make our yard more receptive to nesting species. Below is our current count of 34 native species. 


 

2021 Summer Breeders2021 Summer Breeders

 

Now, perhaps I stretch this a bit because the birds may be nesting in a tree across the street or two doors away. However, these species are foraging here or coming into our yard with young and feeding them here. Oh, how I wish we had 100 acres sometimes! At this point in our lives, that is not feasible. I share ideas with all of you to compensate for that. Each of us can do more to support breeding birds and migrants and help bring back the birds, bees, butterflies and more. 

 

Learn more about Doug Tallamy's books and his big idea, Homegrown National Park and get on the map, too!  

 

Tallamy's Hub

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/6/migration-wanes-into-june-now-6-4-22 Sat, 04 Jun 2022 15:33:54 GMT
More birds of May 5-17-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/5/more-birds-of-may-5-17-22 May, oh my!

So many birds = so little time

 

Today, we start with a video. Fortunately, I saw this bird and could confirm its identity. That will be revealed in due course. So, watch for the bird on the left side on the down-angled branch. It disappears into cover and comes into the basin area 'back door' on the left side. As you can see, these birds are small, quick and it's often difficult to catch sight of them when the leaves have filled out and the bubbler area is so dark and shady. 

 

5-16-22 Mourning WarblerMourning Warbler bathes in the basin.

 

4-28-22 Warbling Vireo4-28-22 Warbling Vireo 5-11-22 Philadelphia Vireo5-11-22 Philadelphia Vireo 5-11-22 Blue-headed Vireo5-11-22 Blue-headed Vireo 5-10-22 Red-eyed Vireo5-10-22 Red-eyed Vireo

 

Four different vireo species have come to the bubbler, usually to splash-bathe. They pause to look, giving me a better chance to get their passport photos. Warbling Vireo and Philadelphia Vireos look similar and are often difficult to separate out. The Philadelphia is the least common. The Warbling Vireo has a white throat and is duller overall, sometimes with yellow on the sides. Blue-headed Vireo and Red-eyed Vireo are a bit easier to tell apart.

  5-10-22 Baltimore Oriole5-10-22 Baltimore Oriole
5-11-22 FOY Orchard Oriole5-11-22 FOY Orchard Oriole

 

Both Baltimore and Orchard Orioles have come to the bubbler this spring. It is the first time that a male Orchard Oriole has gotten in to bathe.

 

5-7-22 Summer Tanager, immature5-7-22 Summer Tanager, immature 5-4-22 Scarlet Tanager5-4-22 Scarlet Tanager

 

Summer and Scarlet Tanagers have also been seen and heard. The young Summer Tanager reminds me of Neopolitan sherbet with its multicolored plumage. Soon, it will be an orangey-red all over.

 

5-8-22 Gray-cheeked Thrush5-8-22 Gray-cheeked Thrush 5-8-22 Swainson's Thrush5-8-22 Swainson's Thrush 5-3-22 Wood Thrush, first time in 10 years at the bubbler!5-3-22 Wood Thrush, first time in 10 years at the bubbler!

 

Gray-cheeked and Swainson's Thrushes come early and often to the bubbler. However, one evening this spring was the first time in ten years that a Wood Thrush got in! Now let's look at a few more warblers.

 

5-2-22 Yellow Warbler5-2-22 Yellow Warbler

5-9-22 Yellow Warbler female5-9-22 Yellow Warbler female

 

Yellow Warblers have been a joy to see this year, and a female came in on Monday, 5-9-22.


5-4-22 Northern Parula5-4-22 Northern Parula

 

We had Northern Parulas a few more days before they began to establish breeding territory. 

 

5-9-22 FOY Bay-breasted Warbler5-9-22 FOY Bay-breasted Warbler 5-11-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female5-11-22 Bay-breasted Warbler female

 

The lovely Bay-breasted Warbler pair arrived on different days. Both are so uniquely colored, though the female can be confused with the Blackpoll female. Dark legs? Bay-breasted. 

 

5-9-22 Blackpoll Warbler5-9-22 Blackpoll Warbler 5-1-22 Blackpoll Warbler female5-1-22 Blackpoll Warbler female

 

And, here is the Blackpoll pair. Certainly don't have dark legs, do they? Orangey legs are a key diagnostic feature for this bird.

 

  5-12-22 Blackburnian Warbler5-12-22 Blackburnian Warbler

5-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler female5-9-22 Blackburnian Warbler female

 

What would spring be without the beautiful Blackburnian Warblers? Firethroats!

 

5-16-22 FOY Mourning Warbler5-16-22 FOY Mourning Warbler
5-16-22 FOY Mourning Warbler5-16-22 FOY Mourning Warbler
 

The video of the first bird was recorded on Friday, 5-16-22. I was able to find the bird in the hydrangeas behind the bubbler. It gave me one full frontal view, Mourning Warbler! Then, it flew down into cover again to forage and sang a little, "cheery-cheery, chorry-chorry-chorry." I had a long list of other things to be done, but thought there might be a good chance that the bird would come back after feeding. It is a skulker, and stayed in the cover of mayapple and wood poppies most of the time, but I was able to get these two photos, certainly not glamour shots but, "C'est la vie!" It is #109 for the year and #78 at the bubbler. To me, having it be comfortable enough to come back in was reward in itself. Every minute a bird is here finding what it needs helps to anchor our location into its genes.

 

All the photos that make it into a gallery or on the blog go through my 12-step process. I've taken hundreds every day this spring and I'm still sorting through them. Maybe I'll be caught up by fall migration!

If you'd like to look at more of the birds, start here:  Photos beginning May 4

 

Update:  The Eastern Bluebirds fledged successfully on 5-12-22. We hope to see more of them soon!

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/5/more-birds-of-may-5-17-22 Wed, 18 May 2022 01:36:46 GMT
First week of May, 5-8-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/5/first-week-of-may-5-8-22 Happy Mother's Day!

How about some warblers to help celebrate?

 

5-1-22 Yellow Warbler5-1-22 Yellow Warbler

4-30-22 Yellow Warbler4-30-22 Yellow Warbler 4-30-22 Yellow Warbler with a caterpillar!4-30-22 Yellow Warbler with a caterpillar!

 

"Sweet, sweet, sweet, I'm so sweet!" There have been Yellow Warblers here almost every day since 4-22-22, Earth Day! Some years we don't see them at all. 

  4-29-22 Pine Warbler4-29-22 Pine Warbler 4-30-22 Pine Warbler4-30-22 Pine Warbler

 

An unusual sighting is this Pine Warbler that was here for several days. It is a rare but regular migrant through the St. Louis area during the last two weeks of April and first few days of May. There is a wintering population in shortleaf pine stands in the southern part of Missouri. 

 

4-28-22 Blackpoll Warbler4-28-22 Blackpoll Warbler 5-1-22 Blackpoll Warbler female5-1-22 Blackpoll Warbler female

 

Blackpoll Warblers! Orange legs are diagnostic for the species. Male is in first photo, and the most beautiful female I've ever seen in the second.  It's important to see this species in the spring because there are very few records of them in the fall. In fact, we have the third record of a fall sighting for the state. 

 

4-29-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler4-29-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler 4-29-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler4-29-22 Chestnut-sided Warbler

 

Chestnut-sided Warblers have been heard calling, "Pleased, pleased, pleased to meet 'ya!"

 

4-30-22 Blue-winged Warbler4-30-22 Blue-winged Warbler 4-30-22 Blue-winged Warbler4-30-22 Blue-winged Warbler

 

Blue-winged Warblers! "Bee-buzz!" What a beauty to be blowing raspberries, but that is just what it sounds like.

 

5-2-22 Golden-winged Warbler5-2-22 Golden-winged Warbler 5-1-22 Golden-winged Warbler5-1-22 Golden-winged Warbler 5-1-22 Golden-winged Warbler5-1-22 Golden-winged Warbler
 

"Zee-bee-bee-bee bee!" sings the Golden-winged Warbler, the bird of highest conservation concern that we've seen here.

 

5-1-22 Northern Parula5-1-22 Northern Parula 5-2-22 Northern Parula5-2-22 Northern Parula 5-2-22 Northern Parula5-2-22 Northern Parula

 

"Zeeee-up!" The diminutive Northern Parula can easily be heard, not always easily seen. It took years to coax them down to the bubbler.

 

4-30-22 Black-and-white Warbler4-30-22 Black-and-white Warbler 4-30-22 Black-and-white Warbler4-30-22 Black-and-white Warbler 4-30-22 Black-and-white Warbler4-30-22 Black-and-white Warbler

 

"Weesee, weesee, weesee, weesee, weesee." The Black-and-white Warbler has a repetitive, rhythmic squeaky song. 

 

5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler 5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler, "tail dipped in ink"5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler, "tail dipped in ink" 5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler5-3-22 FOY Magnolia Warbler

 

The brilliant Magnolia Warbler sings, "Weeta-weeta-weetsee". Its tail looks like it's dipped in ink and like no other warbler's.

 

4-29-22 Northern Waterthrush4-29-22 Northern Waterthrush 4-29-22 Northern Waterthrush4-29-22 Northern Waterthrush

 

The Northern Waterthrush loves the still waters of the swampy thicket. It has a loud metallic "chink" call, and sings, "Sweet sweet sweet swee wee wee chew chew chew." 

 

5-1-22 Black-throated Green Warbler5-1-22 Black-throated Green Warbler
5-1-22 Black-throated Green Warbler5-1-22 Black-throated Green Warbler 5-1-22 Black-throated Green Warbler5-1-22 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

The Black-throated Green Warbler has two songs, "zee-zee-zee-zee-zoozee!" and "zee-zee-zoo-zoo-zee." It's fun to hear all these songs tumbling on top of one another. In May, it is challenging to keep up with all the activity! 

 

Birds will be tumbling in now, in even greater numbers. Here's the forecast:   http://birdcast.info/

 

For all the birds since the last post:  Birds beginning 5-28-22

 

Just warblers, you say?   Warblers

 

 

Enjoy the miracle of migration!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/5/first-week-of-may-5-8-22 Sun, 08 May 2022 08:50:46 GMT
Migrants are on the move! 4-30-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/4/migrants-are-on-the-move-4-30-22  

Migration is now in full swing!

What a big change in the last ten days. Here are just some of the new FOY (first-of-year) birds.

 

4-19-22 Rusty Blackbird4-19-22 Rusty Blackbird

 

The last Rusty Blackbird was seen on Earth Day, 4-22-22. There are still a few being seen in Forest Park, very late for this overwintering  species still to be here. 

 

4-21-22 Blue-headed Vireo4-21-22 Blue-headed Vireo

 

This Blue-headed Vireo splash-bathed on 4-21-22.

 

4-22-22 FOY #62 *42 Black-throated Green Warbler4-22-22 FOY #62 *42 Black-throated Green Warbler 4-22-22 FOY #64 *43 Orange-crowned Warbler4-22-22 FOY #64 *43 Orange-crowned Warbler

4-23-22 Orange-crowned Warbler in cover of Blackhaw out of the wind4-23-22 Orange-crowned Warbler in cover of Blackhaw out of the wind

 

Black-throated Green and Orange-crowned Warblers came in on Earth Day. The second Orange-crowned Warbler was sheltering in a Blackhaw, out of gusty winds the following day.

  4-22-22 FOY 65 *44 Yellow Warbler4-22-22 FOY 65 *44 Yellow Warbler

 

A Yellow Warbler stopped by the bubbler on Earth Day. This species has been seen on three days, more photos will be added soon (if I ever catch up!) 

 

4-22-22 FOY Indigo Bunting4-22-22 FOY Indigo Bunting

 

To complement the Yellow Warbler, and Indigo Bunting also came in for species #66 for the year and #45 at the bubbler.

  4-23-22 FOY 70 Ruby-throated Hummingbird4-23-22 FOY 70 Ruby-throated Hummingbird

4-23-22 FOY 70 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Virginia Bluebells4-23-22 FOY 70 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Virginia Bluebells

 

Finally, our first Ruby-throated Hummingbird arrived on Saturday, 4-23-22. This bird was at the Virginia Bluebells even more than the feeder. I saw the first female yesterday, 4-29-22.
 

4-23-22 FOY 73 *49 Northern Parula4-23-22 FOY 73 *49 Northern Parula 4-25-22 Northern Parula female4-25-22 Northern Parula female 4-25-22 Northern Parula female4-25-22 Northern Parula female

 

Beautiful Northern Parulas came in on Saturday, 4-23-22 as well. The female shows us all what these birds are doing, finding caterpillars on native plants to eat! This is exactly why we do not use pesticides because that would eliminate this essential food for these migrants and for nesting birds. Caterpillars are the primary food fed to baby birds.

 

4-23-22 Nashville Warbler4-23-22 Nashville Warbler 4-24-22 Tennessee Warbler4-24-22 Tennessee Warbler 4-24-22 FOY Blackpoll Warbler4-24-22 FOY Blackpoll Warbler

4-24-22 FOY Blackpoll and Tennessee, Nashville Warblers4-24-22 FOY Blackpoll and Tennessee, Nashville Warblers

 

Nashville, Tennessee and Blackpoll Warblers, you guessed them! "Parties at the Bubbler" have officially begun!

 

4-25-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher4-25-22 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 4-25-22 FOY Lincoln's Sparrow4-25-22 FOY Lincoln's Sparrow 4-26-22 FOY Wild Turkey4-26-22 FOY Wild Turkey

 

From the tiny Blue-gray Gnatcatcher and shy Lincoln's Sparrow to the Wild Turkey that stepped out of the woods before scooting back to cover, birds of every size have been coming through. It's spring migration!

 

4-26-22 FOY Rose-breasted Grosbeak female4-26-22 FOY Rose-breasted Grosbeak female

4-26-22 FOY Golden-winged Warbler4-26-22 FOY Golden-winged Warbler
4-26-22 FOY Great Crested Flycatcher4-26-22 FOY Great Crested Flycatcher

 

Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, Golden-winged Warblers and the Great Crested Flycatchers have been added to the mix.

 

4-25-22 Red-headed Woodpecker4-25-22 Red-headed Woodpecker

4-27-22 Red-headed Woodpecker4-27-22 Red-headed Woodpecker

4-26-22 Red-headed Woodpecker4-26-22 Red-headed Woodpecker

 

For the first time ever, we have TWO Red-headed Woodpeckers frequenting the woodland. They both are seen and heard every day now since Monday, 4-25-22. The first photo shows the near adult bird and the next two show an adult. Perhaps they are a pair now. This species is on the Watch List due to habitat loss, so this is a remarkable development. With the leaves filling out on the trees, it may be trickier to see and photograph these birds. Will try to keep you updated.

 

Carolina Wrens and House Finches have fledged. Northern Cardinals, Eastern Phoebes, Eastern Bluebirds and more are feeding young. Yesterday, I had 56 species of birds here, including 14 warblers. It will take me a while to catch up, but photos will be added into this gallery. 

 

It's truly spring!

 

Birds since 4-17-22

 

PS  Some of you have asked about the highly contagious Avian Flu situation for the birds in other states. I'll post an alert if we need to take down feeders and bird baths. At this point, it is not necessary as far as I know.

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/4/migrants-are-on-the-move-4-30-22 Sat, 30 Apr 2022 11:18:34 GMT
Mid-April updates 4-17-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/4/mid-april-updates-4-17-22  

The moody month of April is now under the full Pink Moon.

 

4-7-22 Purple Finch female4-7-22 Purple Finch female 4-7-22 Purple Finch female4-7-22 Purple Finch female

 

A female Purple Finch was seen on a couple days and visited the bubbler on 4-7-22.

  4-7-22 Hermit Thrush with pupa4-7-22 Hermit Thrush with pupa

 

Two Hermit Thrushes were also here chasing each other and finding tiny larvae to eat.

 

4-8-22 American Goldfinch on Blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium)4-8-22 American Goldfinch on Blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium) 4-8-22 American Goldfinch on Spicebush4-8-22 American Goldfinch on Spicebush 4-8-22 American Goldfinches4-8-22 American Goldfinches

4-8-22 Virginia Bluebells in light snow4-8-22 Virginia Bluebells in light snow

 

We had a setback with sleet and light snow when a cold front came in on 4-8-22. The next morning, we had a hard freeze. Birds need to find food no matter what the weather! Somehow, dark days make the goldfinches all the brighter.

 


4-9-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker on Green Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica)4-9-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker on Green Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) 4-9-22 Hairy Woodpecker4-9-22 Hairy Woodpecker

 

A Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and a Hairy Woodpecker found insects by pecking away at a Green Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) and small stump.

 

4-9-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch with insect4-9-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch with insect
4-9-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler with insects4-9-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler with insects 4-12-22 Eastern Phoebe4-12-22 Eastern Phoebe 4-12-22 Eastern Phoebe caught insect in 30 mph gust4-12-22 Eastern Phoebe caught insect in 30 mph gust

 

Red-breasted Nuthatches glean insects from vines and bark. The Yellow-rumped Warbler also does but along with the Eastern Phoebe, a flycatcher, it will sally out and catch insects on the wing.

 

4-10-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet4-10-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet 4-12-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet4-12-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet 4-12-22 Carolina Chickadee4-12-22 Carolina Chickadee 4-12-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler4-12-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler 4-12-22 White-breasted Nuthatch4-12-22 White-breasted Nuthatch

 

Bathing is a favorite activity even on the coldest days. A Ruby-crowned Kinglet checked the bubbler when it was full of wind-blown leaves and returned the following morning. The Carolina Chickadee, Yellow-rumped Warbler and White-breasted Nuthatch always find a time to  freshen up.


4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage 4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage 4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage

4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage4-13-22 Red-headed Woodpecker juvenile, near adult plumage

1-27-22 Red-headed Woodpecker Juvenile1-27-22 Red-headed Woodpecker Juvenile

 

I was filling the feeders one morning when I heard a scuffle and looked up to see a Red-headed Woodpecker and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker having a bit of a confrontation. Four days later on 4-13-22, I was able to find the Red-headed Woodpecker again in the woodland. What a striking bird! Because it has dark barring in the secondary feathers and they're not pure white, it is a young bird in near adult plumage. I wonder, is it the same juvenile bird that was here in January? (last photo)

 

4-13-22 FOY #56 White-eyed Vireo4-13-22 FOY #56 White-eyed Vireo 4-15-22 FOY #57 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher4-15-22 FOY #57 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 4-16-22 FOY#58 B#40 Swainson's Thrush4-16-22 FOY#58 B#40 Swainson's Thrush

 

We've seen three new arrivals for the year. In between storms on 4-13-22, I spotted this bedraggled little White-eyed Vireo for FOY #56. Two days later, the Blue-gray Gnatcatcher was confirmed. (Thought I'd had a glimpse when I saw the vireo.) And, yesterday, this Swainson's Thrush popped out of the bluebells at the bubbler for FOY #58 and Bubbler Bird #40.

 

4-15-22 Brown Thrasher4-15-22 Brown Thrasher
4-15-22 Brown Thrasher4-15-22 Brown Thrasher 4-15-22 Brown Thrasher4-15-22 Brown Thrasher

 

Remember in the last post, I mentioned my little nemesis, the Brown Thrasher. Well, I have to take that back. It came out on Friday to give me a real education on how it thrashes about in the leaves to find food and lives up to its name. Of course, haven't seen it since! Some days it's all about luck and being in the right place at the right time.

 

4-12-22 Five Eastern Bluebird eggs! Found at 3:52 pm4-12-22 Five Eastern Bluebird eggs! Found at 3:52 pm

 

We checked the Eastern Bluebird nest on 4-12-22 and found five beautiful eggs. The female is diligent about being on the nest and the male takes his guard duty very seriously. Fingers crossed they'll be successful. 

 

Recently, I was asked why we have so many beautiful birds here in our yard. We became aware years ago that birds were in trouble. My birding mentors told me stories of birds literally, "dripping off the trees." Well, birds are in trouble and their numbers have dropped dramatically since 1970. Birds are the "canaries in the coal mine", that means they are indicators of environmental health. If you are interested in helping birds and more, here are some things that you can do, right in your own yard.

 

 

Together, we can make a huge difference for our native birds, butterflies and bees! 

 

To view all the photos taken since 4-7-22, begin here:  Mid-April

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/4/mid-april-updates-4-17-22 Sun, 17 Apr 2022 18:21:47 GMT
Into April now 4-7-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/4/into-april-now-4-7-22  

New arrivals and nesting birds are being seen.

 

3-28-22 FOY #50 Purple Finch3-28-22 FOY #50 Purple Finch 3-28-22 FOY #50 Purple Finch with House Finch in front3-28-22 FOY #50 Purple Finch with House Finch in front

 

Our FOY #50 Purple Finch was seen on 3-28-22. This male was here just one day. In the tray feeder, it's easy to see the differences between the House Finch in front and the Purple Finch behind. The House Finch is orangier and smaller with striations on its flanks.

 

3-31-22 FOY #52 Swamp Sparrow3-31-22 FOY #52 Swamp Sparrow 3-31-22 FOY #52 Swamp Sparrow3-31-22 FOY #52 Swamp Sparrow

 

A bird that we missed last year showed up on 3-31-22, a Swamp Sparrow, FOY #52. Another bird had shown up earlier that day, a Brown Thrasher for #51. Though seen several times, it has eluded my efforts to photograph it. 

 

3-28-22 American Goldfinches face off3-28-22 American Goldfinches face off

3-28-22 American Goldfinches determine who's boss3-28-22 American Goldfinches determine who's boss

4-3-22 American Goldfinch4-3-22 American Goldfinch

 

Many male birds are getting pretty testy with each other. Robins, sparrows and these American Goldfinches dramatically display the pecking order! Breeding is serious business and finding the best places to attract a mate and procreate is what Spring is all about for birds.

 

3-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler female3-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler female 3-29-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in molt3-29-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in molt

3-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in Spicebush3-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in Spicebush 4-2-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler with insect4-2-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler with insect

4-4-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)4-4-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler in Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)

 

Yellow-rumped Warblers have been surviving on bark butter, peanut crumbs, suet and flying insects on warm days. The male in full breeding plumage caught a tiny mason bee while it was pollinating spicebush (Lindera benzoin). This is the first time I've documented that behavior.

 

4-2-22 Chipping Sparrow4-2-22 Chipping Sparrow
 

Another new arrival was a little Chipping Sparrow FOY#53 on 4-1-22.  It was here for two days before moving on.

 

4-4-22 Swamp Sparrow4-4-22 Swamp Sparrow
 

I found the Swamp Sparrow again, in the swamp of course, on 4-4-22.
 

4-3-22 Rusty Blackbird4-3-22 Rusty Blackbird

4-5-22 450+ Rusty Blackbirds4-5-22 450+ Rusty Blackbirds
 

We have seen large flocks of Rusty Blackbirds come in to forage in the leaves throughout the yard and especially in the swampy woods. It can be really challenging to begin to show how many there are, they're so camouflaged. On Tuesday, there was a very large flock here and when I left to go vote, they flushed and started to move east and then north out of our yard and into our neighbors' yards. I drove very slowly to photograph the birds with my phone. I enlarged the photos and counted the birds, there were over 450! Add in another 150 or so that had moved up into the canopy, and well, at least 600 birds were here in the neighborhood. This species is listed as Vulnerable. We are lucky to see them and try not to disturb them so they can feed on insects in the leaves. I suspect they moved back into our yard after I left.

 

 

4-3-22 Eastern Bluebirds4-3-22 Eastern Bluebirds 4-3-22 Eastern Bluebirds4-3-22 Eastern Bluebirds 4-3-22 Eastern Bluebirds -Day nine4-3-22 Eastern Bluebirds -Day nine
 

The pair of Eastern Bluebirds has been very busy building their nest. They both seem to be micromanaging this joint operation! They were still working on finishing touches this morning.

 

4-4-22 Eastern Phoebe4-4-22 Eastern Phoebe

 

The pair of Eastern Phoebes have been at work as well. We've seen the female gathering nesting material while the male calls away.

 

4-6-22 FOY#55 Hermit Thrush first seen on 4-4-224-6-22 FOY#55 Hermit Thrush first seen on 4-4-22 4-6-22 FOY#55 Hermit Thrush first seen on 4-4-224-6-22 FOY#55 Hermit Thrush first seen on 4-4-22 4-6-22 FOY#55 Hermit Thrush first seen on 4-4-224-6-22 FOY#55 Hermit Thrush first seen on 4-4-22

 

On 4-4-22, a Great Blue Heron flew over for FOY #54 and a bit later I spotted our FOY #55 Hermit Thrush. It has a distinctive way of moving along quickly, then stops and flicks its tail up, then lowers it slowly. 

 

4-1-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch4-1-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch 4-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch4-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

Red-breasted Nuthatches are still around, sometimes I see two males and a female. The two males are pictured here, the second one lighter than the first.

 

4-1-22 Brown Creeper4-1-22 Brown Creeper

 

Brown Creepers are still foraging on the trees, sometimes on oaks, cherries or maples.  

 

4-4-22 First bloom of Virginia Bluebells4-4-22 First bloom of Virginia Bluebells

 

Well, it's time to get those hummingbird feeders cleaned up and ready to go. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds will be coming in soon, along with warblers ready to refuel from their long hauls, too. It has been cool and somewhat slow, but Spring is springing!

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/4/into-april-now-4-7-22 Thu, 07 Apr 2022 18:05:55 GMT
Signs of Spring 3-27-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/3/signs-of-spring-3-27-22

 

Signs of Spring mean more than Daffodils!

 

3-12-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker3-12-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 3-12-22 Cedar Waxwing3-12-22 Cedar Waxwing

 

Visits by a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and flocks of Cedar Waxwings signal the change is coming. 

  3-19-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler pair3-19-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler pair

3-26-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler3-26-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler

3-6-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler3-6-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler
 

Yellow-rumped Warblers are seen, sometimes catching insects on warmer days.

 

3-15-22 Brown Creeper on Persimmon (Diospyros Virginian)3-15-22 Brown Creeper on Persimmon (Diospyros Virginian)

 

Brown Creepers are often foraging on the bark of trees, in this case, a persimmon (Diospyros virginiana).

 

3-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch3-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

3-17-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch3-17-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch 3-17-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch in Elm3-17-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch in Elm

 

Red-breasted Nuthatches find plenty to eat, even checking the buds of American elm (Ulmus americana) for a treat.

 

3-25-22 Song Sparrow3-25-22 Song Sparrow


The Song Sparrow has been singing for weeks. It popped up onto the woodland gate, more easily seen one day.

 

3-25-22 Carolina Chickadee3-25-22 Carolina Chickadee

 

The Carolina Chickadee checked a leaf blown into the hydrangea for a tidbit.

 

3-15-22 Rusty Blackbird3-15-22 Rusty Blackbird 3-15-22 Rusty Blackbirds3-15-22 Rusty Blackbirds 3-20-22 Rusty Blackbirds3-20-22 Rusty Blackbirds 3-26-22 Northern Flicker and 5 Rusty Blackbirds3-26-22 Northern Flicker and 5 Rusty Blackbirds 3-26-22 15 Rusty Blackbirds3-26-22 15 Rusty Blackbirds 3-26-22 5 Rusty Blackbirds3-26-22 5 Rusty Blackbirds

 

Rusty Blackbirds come in some days in flocks of 80-100 or so birds. It's so hard to tell for sure! They are perfectly camouflaged in the shadows, overturning leaves for insect food or bathing in puddles or the basin. It's only when they fly up into the trees that their numbers seem to swell. Spring is a time of high contrast in light and in the weather!

 

3-26-22 Pileated Woodpecker3-26-22 Pileated Woodpecker

 

Yesterday, in the midst of all the blackbird activity, I turned to see the Pileated Woodpecker in its fine bright plumage. It worked on several trees and ate some suet before calling and flying off to the south.

 

3-21-22 Eastern Bluebird3-21-22 Eastern Bluebird 3-21-22 Eastern Bluebird female and American Robin3-21-22 Eastern Bluebird female and American Robin

 

This Eastern Bluebird pair have continued to spend time here every day, finding insects on warm days and taking mealworms to supplement their needs. They seemed determined to make our yard their home! So, we put up the nest box again on 3-18-22, even though it was a bit late. Yesterday, our effort was rewarded! 

 

3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird on sentry duty3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird on sentry duty 3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird female decides to nest!3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird female decides to nest! 3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird pair3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird pair 3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird pair3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird pair 3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird3-26-22 Eastern Bluebird 3-27-22 Eastern Bluebird female3-27-22 Eastern Bluebird female 3-27-22 Eastern Bluebird female3-27-22 Eastern Bluebird female

 

This is the first time we have ever had nesting Eastern Bluebirds. After such a tough year for this species, we have high hopes for their success! 

  3-27-22 Eastern Phoebe3-27-22 Eastern Phoebe

 

This morning, we had two Eastern Phoebes, fluttering around each other and the former nesting area. We think it may be the same pair that raised five chicks a few years ago. Maybe they'll stick around, fingers crossed!

 

Spring is springing!

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/3/signs-of-spring-3-27-22 Sun, 27 Mar 2022 23:12:28 GMT
SPRING FORWARD! 3-13-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/3/spring-forward LET'S CELEBRATE SPRING'S IMMINENT ARRIVAL!

 

Check out the new Spring Warblers Gallery to review:

 

Spring Warbler Species at Shady Oaks

 

5-11-21 Blackburnian Warbler5-11-21 Blackburnian Warbler

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/3/spring-forward Sun, 13 Mar 2022 15:42:07 GMT
Into March 3-9-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/3/into-march-3-9-22 Don't forget - Spring Forward Saturday! 

 

We've seen other signs of spring, despite the next batch of snow in the forecast.

 

3-1-22 Eastern Bluebird3-1-22 Eastern Bluebird 3-2-22 Eastern Bluebird female3-2-22 Eastern Bluebird female

 

Eastern Bluebirds are getting brighter, noisier and chasing each other about.

 

3-2-22 American Goldfinch in cover of white oak3-2-22 American Goldfinch in cover of white oak

 

American Goldfinches are turning more yellow. They often perch up in the oak leaves on breezy days, soaking up the sun.

 

2-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler2-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler

3-1-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler3-1-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler

3-6-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler3-6-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

The Yellow-rumped Warbler was fly-catching the day it warmed up to 81 degrees! 


3-2-22 Rusty Blackbird3-2-22 Rusty Blackbird 3-2-22 Rusty Blackbirds3-2-22 Rusty Blackbirds

 

Rusty Blackbirds are coming in small flocks of a dozen or so at times.

 

3-4-22 Brown-headed Cowbird female3-4-22 Brown-headed Cowbird female 3-4-22 Brown-headed Cowbird female #23-4-22 Brown-headed Cowbird female #2

 

Two female Brown-headed Cowbirds came in a week after the males. 

 

3-4-22 FOY #46 Eastern Phoebe3-4-22 FOY #46 Eastern Phoebe 3-4-22 FOY #46 Eastern Phoebe3-4-22 FOY #46 Eastern Phoebe 3-4-22 FOY #46 Eastern Phoebe3-4-22 FOY #46 Eastern Phoebe

 

An Eastern Phoebe showed up about 10:00 am on 3-4-22 for #46 for the year. It was finding insects on its migratory stop here.

 

3-4-22 Dark-eyed Junco3-4-22 Dark-eyed Junco 3-4-22 Brown Creeper3-4-22 Brown Creeper

 

Dark-eyed Juncos and Brown Creepers will be around into April.

 

3-4-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch3-4-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

3-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch pair3-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch pair

 

The lighter pair of Red-breasted Nuthatches are being seen every day, but I think the richer colored pair may have moved on with the strong southerly winds last week.

 

3-6-22 Song Sparrow3-6-22 Song Sparrow

 

The male Song Sparrow has been singing a bit west of us now, but one of the pair came in to bathe.

 

3-7-22 FOY #47 Eastern Towhee3-7-22 FOY #47 Eastern Towhee

For comparison, 10-26-12 Eastern TowheeFor comparison, 10-26-12 Eastern Towhee

Another new bird for the year, #47 popped out of the leaves on 3-7-22. The Eastern Towhee is not a bird I can count on seeing every year, and this was not a soul-satisfying view! The first photo is all I managed before it disappeared. The second photo was taken on 10-26-15 when I got a full view of a male.

 

This morning, I was filling feeders and heard the sweet trill of #48, a Pine Warbler up in the pond cypress. Perhaps it will show us how beautiful it is! In the meantime, watch for green peeking through the snow...I'll be watching for more birds as they move through our space.

​​​​​​​

 

​​​​​​​

 

​​​​​​​

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/3/into-march-3-9-22 Wed, 09 Mar 2022 22:18:43 GMT
February has flown by! 2-28-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/2/february-has-flown-by-2-28-22  

February is the shortest month and we've now gained 1 hour and 45 minutes of daylight.

 

2-24-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler2-24-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler 2-12-22 Brown Creeper2-12-22 Brown Creeper

 

The Yellow-rumped Warbler and sometimes two Brown Creepers are still being seen every day.

 

2-19-22 Carolina Chickadee with deformed leg2-19-22 Carolina Chickadee with deformed leg 2-20-22 White-breasted Nuthatch with broken tip of upper mandible2-20-22 White-breasted Nuthatch with broken tip of upper mandible

 

There have been some tough, cold and icy days for birds like the Carolina Chickadee with its deformed leg and the White-breasted Nuthatch with the crossed bill. The nuthatch has broken the upper mandible and still hammers away at the peanut feeder to get food. I wonder how this one will feed young successfully.

  2-18-22 American Robin2-18-22 American Robin

 

Two American Robins have been coming onto the deck for bits of mealworms and bark butter. They both want to be first on their breeding territories. This one was soaking up a bit of warmth from the fountain on a very cold morning. 

  2-25-22 Rusty Blackbirds, Brown-headed Cowbirds and Red-winged Blackbird2-25-22 Rusty Blackbirds, Brown-headed Cowbirds and Red-winged Blackbird

 

A very large mixed flock of blackbirds came in on Friday, 2-25. It was a dark day, but I was enjoying the rich variation in the plumage of all these birds. (When you see browns and blacks, make the most of it!) I estimated 50 Rusty Blackbirds and if you study this first photo, you'll see four Brown-headed Cowbirds in the right foreground. There were ten cowbirds that I counted under the south feeders at one point, the most I've seen at once. 

 

2-25-22 Rusty Blackbirds, Brown-headed Cowbirds and Red-winged Blackbird2-25-22 Rusty Blackbirds, Brown-headed Cowbirds and Red-winged Blackbird

 

Notice the Red-winged Blackbird just in front of the branch? It was the only one in this large flock that I could find.

 

2-25-22 Rusty Blackbird, Brown-headed Cowbirds2-25-22 Rusty Blackbird, Brown-headed Cowbirds

 

Two Brown-headed Cowbirds joined a Rusty Blackbird to drink at the bubbler.

  2-25-22 Red-winged Blackbird2-25-22 Red-winged Blackbird

 

The Red-winged Blackbird also came in for half a dozen sips of water. This brought the Bubbler count up to 34 species for the year. I also saw a House Sparrow at the feeder, briefly, before the birds all lifted away. We're now at 44 species for the year, highest count at this point that I've documented since 2011 when I started making annual lists for myself and my two friends, Connie and Wally. They both usually get more species than I do, but the variety between the three of us is quite amazing. 

 

2-24-22 Dark-eyed Junco Slate-colored form2-24-22 Dark-eyed Junco Slate-colored form 2-25-22 Dark-eyed Junco Oregon form2-25-22 Dark-eyed Junco Oregon form

 

In this last icy storm, we also have seen some slate-colored Dark-eyed Juncos which are typical, as well as the Oregon form of Dark-eyed Juncos. Note the dark hood, chestnut brown back and buff-brown flanks.

 

2-21-22 American Crow2-21-22 American Crow

 

American Crows have been coming to drink after grabbing a bit of bark butter off the trees. They will forage in the leaves in the woods, too. I think these birds have a harder time now that we're all using bins for our trash instead of bags.
 

  2-25-22 American Goldfinch2-25-22 American Goldfinch 2-25-22 Eastern Bluebird2-25-22 Eastern Bluebird

 

American Goldfinches are beginning to get brighter yellow plumage, and the dominant Eastern Bluebird is stunning. Birds are definitely thinking 'spring' as they chase off other males.

  2-25-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker2-25-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 2-25-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker2-25-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 2-25-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker2-25-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

 

The juvenile Yellow-bellied Sapsucker has been seen on several days. On Friday, it chased off another male, which was new for the year.

 

2-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch M12-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch M1 2-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch M22-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch M2 2-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch F12-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch F1 2-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch F22-25-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch F2

 

That Friday storm also brought in two more Red-breasted Nuthatches! I saw three birds at one time as they waited to get on the feeder, then the lighter pair waited together on the same branch a bit later. The pair that have been here all winter are richer in color, and I call them M1 and F1; the new pair are lighter in color, M2 and F2. So, the photos in order are M1, M2, F1 and F2.

 

Just like the birds, aren't we all ready for Spring???

 

ps. As I went to post this, I saw that we have crossed a milestone with over 100,000 visitors to our website! 

Thank you all for visiting!

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/2/february-has-flown-by-2-28-22 Mon, 28 Feb 2022 13:20:06 GMT
Into February 2-10-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/2/into-february-2-10-22 January ended with two more days of documenting Common Redpolls!

 

1-29-22 Common Redpoll1-29-22 Common Redpoll 1-29-22 Common Redpolls1-29-22 Common Redpolls 1-30-22 Common Redpoll1-30-22 Common Redpoll 1-30-22 Common Redpoll1-30-22 Common Redpoll 1-30-22 Common Redpolls1-30-22 Common Redpolls 1-29-22 Common Redpolls1-29-22 Common Redpolls
 

It is difficult to know for certain how many birds were in this little flock! There was a slightly different mix of male and female/immature birds each time they were seen and then, it was only for 30 seconds or so. My highest count was 3 males and 4 females at any one time. We had put out fresh thistle or nyjer seed in a tube feeder in the garden for them, but the birds were never seen at a feeder. My guess is that they were eating seeds in trees like our Pond Cypress or Catalpa where siskins will feed, or in neighboring Sycamores or River Birch. They may have been in the garden, and I just missed them - they're the size of a goldfinch, around 5" and truly frenetic!

 

The Common Redpolls are the rarest of the three small finches that might be seen in Missouri. We're all familiar with the American Goldfinch, which is resident year-round. The Pine Siskin is also an irruptive species, coming south to look for food and we've had them in good numbers some years. There is one other form known as the Hoary Redpoll, which is extremely rare. It is much frostier looking and the bill is smaller. It is still described as a separate species, but may soon be "lumped" with the Common Redpoll, as they are very closely related. 

 

Keep a lookout for the Common Redpoll at your feeders, you might get lucky, too! 

 

There are some fascinating things known about these birds. They tunnel into the snow to keep warm! Check it out!  Common Redpoll

 

To see all the Common Redpoll photos and others, begin here:  Common Redpoll images

 

 

2-02-22 American Tree Sparrow and Song Sparrow in Clove Currant2-02-22 American Tree Sparrow and Song Sparrow in Clove Currant

2-02-22 American Tree Sparrow2-02-22 American Tree Sparrow

2-02-22 Fox Sparrow2-02-22 Fox Sparrow

 

Our first winter storm came in on Wednesday, February 2. With it came two new sparrows for the year, an American Tree Sparrow and a Fox Sparrow. The first image shows the American Tree sparrow on the left with a Song Sparrow on the right, in Clove Currant (Ribes odoratum). Secondly, the tree sparrow is on its own, on the snow covered wall. The Fox Sparrow was staying in the shelter of the Arrowwood Viburnum (Viburnum dentatum x Blue Muffin). Happy to see these birds, we don't have them come in every year.

 

2-02-22 Cooper's Hawk with prey2-02-22 Cooper's Hawk with prey 2-02-22 Cooper's Hawk digesting 3 hours later2-02-22 Cooper's Hawk digesting 3 hours later

 

An immature Cooper's Hawk has been terrorizing the smaller birds. We saw it with a black feathered prey, hoping it had caught a European Starling. It sat on that log for over 3 hours, digesting the meal as snow fell. Then, it was off again to find dinner!

 

2-02-22 Red-tailed Hawk2-02-22 Red-tailed Hawk

 

 While the Cooper's rested, a Red-tailed Hawk was seen scoping out squirrels.

 

2-3-22 American Tree Sparrow2-3-22 American Tree Sparrow

2-3-22 Fox Sparrow2-3-22 Fox Sparrow

 

The next day, both sparrows were seen again. The American Tree Sparrow was drinking at the pond and the Fox Sparrow was again staying close to the Viburnum when it was not under the feeders foraging for seed.

 

2-3-22 Eastern Bluebird2-3-22 Eastern Bluebird
 

This Eastern Bluebird summed up the general feeling out in the storm. Conditions were tough. All the birds had been singing, tuning up for spring. Males have been chasing other males. We have gained over an hour of daylight, so surely, spring can't be too far away!

 

2-3-22 Cooper's Hawk immature2-3-22 Cooper's Hawk immature 2-3-22 Carolina Wren at fountain2-3-22 Carolina Wren at fountain

2-3-22 Snowfall2-3-22 Snowfall

2-3-22 Garden in snow2-3-22 Garden in snow

 

The Cooper's Hawk came back, trying to chase birds out of cover. The Carolina Wrens have their secret hiding places and have been very cautious. We ended up with over 7" of drifting snow. 

 

2-4-22 Northern Cardinal2-4-22 Northern Cardinal

2-5-22 American Tree Sparrow2-5-22 American Tree Sparrow

 

The sun came out and birds continued to look for food. The American Tree Sparrow popped out of the basin and rested in the hydrangeas behind the bubbler. That was the last time we've seen it; the Fox Sparrow must have moved on, too.

 

2-5-22 Eastern Bluebirds2-5-22 Eastern Bluebirds
 

This peanut feeder has had more interest than we've ever seen. Even the bluebirds were scrapping over it when I was a bit slow to put out more mealworms.

 

2-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch2-5-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch 2-6-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch female and Northern Flicker2-6-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch female and Northern Flicker

 

The Red-breasted Nuthatches claimed the feeder as theirs, but they've had to share. The male won't go to it if other birds are there, but the female? Ha, she has spunk! 

 

  2-6-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet2-6-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet

 

The Ruby-crowned Kinglet came back again to bathe on that sunny day.

 

2-7-22 Red-shouldered Hawk2-7-22 Red-shouldered Hawk

 

The Red-shouldered Hawk has also been making appearances. Everybody's gotta eat!

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/2/into-february-2-10-22 Thu, 10 Feb 2022 19:00:05 GMT
1-30-22 January Serendipities https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/1/1-30-22-january-serendipities First month reveals new behaviors and new birds!

 

1-17-22 Hairy Woodpecker1-17-22 Hairy Woodpecker

 

A Hairy Woodpecker bathes, a behavior not seen before with this species.

  1-24-22 Downy Woodpecker female and Hairy Woodpecker1-24-22 Downy Woodpecker female and Hairy Woodpecker

 

A female Downy Woodpecker and the Hairy Woodpecker come in to drink at the same time for an often wished-for comparison photo.

 

1-28-22 Red-bellied Woodpecker, note red belly1-28-22 Red-bellied Woodpecker, note red belly

 

A Red-bellied Woodpecker actually showed us its named for red belly.

 

1-20-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker1-20-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

 

A Yellow-bellied Sapsucker preened its yellow belly. So much for bellies, now we go back to heads!

 

1-20-22 FOY #36 Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker1-20-22 FOY #36 Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker 1-20-22 FOY #36 Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker1-20-22 FOY #36 Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker 1-20-22 FOY #36 Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker1-20-22 FOY #36 Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker

 

On 1-20-22, a juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker arrived. It has been seen often coming in for quick sips at the bubbler. We don't get to see this species every year. It is on the Watch List, in decline due to habitat loss, so it is quite heartening to see one!

 

You can read more here:  Red-headed Woodpecker

 

1-27-22 Northern Flicker and Golden-crowned Kinglet1-27-22 Northern Flicker and Golden-crowned Kinglet 1-27-22 Golden-crowned Kinglet1-27-22 Golden-crowned Kinglet

 

While a female Northern Flicker was getting some sips of water, a Golden-crowned Kinglet joined in. It returned for a solo. 

 

1-27-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet1-27-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet 1-27-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet1-27-22 Ruby-crowned Kinglet

 

On the following day, a Ruby-crowned Kinglet showed up.They are the more rare of the two Kinglets seen in the winter, usually staying further south in Missouri. However, I saw the bird and it flashed away before I took those photos. While I waited for it to come back, a much bigger surprise came in!

 

  1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARETwo of four Common Redpolls seen at our bubbler. 1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RAREHoary Redpoll

 

WHAT? Redpolls! There were at least four of them, and thought I saw a fifth one. On Thursday, 1-27-22 at 11:09 am they came in, drank, stayed 32 seconds and whirled away up above me into the canopy. Well, I was not budging from my spot now.

 

1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE and Song Sparrow1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE and Song Sparrow 1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE and Song Sparrow1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE and Song Sparrow 1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE and Song Sparrow1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpolls - RARE and Song Sparrow 1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpoll - RARE1-27-22 FOY #39 Common Redpoll - RARE

 

At 12:03 pm they returned, and stayed 36 seconds. I confirmed the presence of five along with their timing when I reviewed the Bubbler Cam video. I watched for them to return, checking the feeders, too. They are a nomadic winter finch, and will show up in Missouri when there is an irruption year, and this is one. These Common Redpolls are officially Bubbler Bird Species #124. 

 

12-29-08 Common Redpoll12-29-08 Common RedpollMargy Terpstra

 

Many years ago on 12-29-2008, I had a single female at this sock feeder. It was a much darker looking bird, but there is variation in the plumage depending on age and time of year.

 

You can read more:  Common Redpoll

 

1-26-22 Red-shouldered Hawk1-26-22 Red-shouldered Hawk
1-21-22 Carolina Chickadee at 5 degrees1-21-22 Carolina Chickadee at 5 degrees

 

We enjoy seeing the resident Red-shouldered Hawk and Carolina Chickadee taking time to rest in the woodland on cold days.

 

1-23-22 Red-breasted Nuthatches1-23-22 Red-breasted Nuthatches

 

The pair of Red-breasted Nuthatches are seen every day grabbing bits of peanuts.

 

1-23-22 Eastern Bluebird1-23-22 Eastern Bluebird

 

Neither of us grew up seeing Eastern Bluebirds and we're so taken with their beauty.

 

1-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler with Northern Flicker in flight1-28-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler with Northern Flicker in flight
1-27-22 Brown Creeper1-27-22 Brown Creeper

 

The Yellow-rumped Warbler also takes time to rest and conserve energy. Can you name the bird in flight behind it? The Brown Creeper regularly gets little sips.

 

1-28-22 25 Rusty Blackbirds1-28-22 25 Rusty Blackbirds 1-28-22 Rusty Blackbirds1-28-22 Rusty Blackbirds

 

Rusty Blackbirds are being seen in numbers now, On Friday, there was a flock of perhaps 75, under the feeders and culling through the leaves. They have their own subtle, rich beauty.

 

To be continued...oh, and that is a Northern Flicker behind the Yellow-rumped Warbler! 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/1/1-30-22-january-serendipities Sun, 30 Jan 2022 13:31:37 GMT
1-13-22 Ways to help winter birds https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/1/1-13-22-ways-help-winter-birds We've gained 13 minutes of daylight since the solstice! 

 

The big news is that the Eastern Bluebirds have figured out where food is for them on cold days when the insects aren't as easily found. Yay for the bluebirds! Feeders helped the breeding pair get through last winter when snow covered the ground for days. They've brought in the whole brood. With several inches of snow predicted for Friday night and Saturday, we will probably have birds at all the feeders.

 

1-6-22 Eastern Bluebirds1-6-22 Eastern Bluebirds
1-11-22 Eastern Bluebirds1-11-22 Eastern Bluebirds

1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird, House Finch and American Goldfinch1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird, House Finch and American Goldfinch 1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird female1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird female

 

There's a hanging tray feeder, a couple window feeders where at least one bluebird took a mealworm, and this setup on the deck. I've dubbed it the "Grab 'n Go" bar.

 

1-10-22 Bird Food Table 'grab-n-go'1-10-22 Bird Food Table 'grab-n-go' 1-10-22 Eastern Bluebird mix1-10-22 Eastern Bluebird mix

 

Main food items for these feeders are dried mealworms, Bark Butter Bits (Wild Birds Unlimited product) and fine sunflower chips. A suet cake could be broken into bits, too. These foods are also popular with a lot of other bird species like House Finches and American Goldfinches. Here are a few more.

 

1-5-22 Tufted Titmouse1-5-22 Tufted Titmouse 1-8-22 Blue Jay1-8-22 Blue Jay 1-11-22 Northern Flicker1-11-22 Northern Flicker

 

Tufted Titmice, Blue Jays and Northern Flickers come in and quickly grab a bite, then head back to the trees and shrubs for cover.

 

1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird 1-11-22 Eastern Bluebird at the fountain1-11-22 Eastern Bluebird at the fountain

 

The birds will rest in trees near the feeding stations and this male is in a Spicebush (Lindera benzoin). The birds are coming to the fountain often for water, which is on the deck railing. The white framework supports a plastic cover and a wool blanket as insulation to keep the water from freezing up on bitterly cold nights.

 

 

Again this year, our neighbors shared their Christmas tree with us after taking it down. It still has great fragrance and the sparrows and juncos took to using it right away for cover. We staked it southeast of the stump, which blocks the northwest winds. Now, the bark butter log had not been getting much traffic so Dan took off the hardware cloth cage and made a new one with this vinyl mesh. Small birds should be able to get through, larger birds can come up from underneath. Hopefully, the starlings will still be deterred.

 

Now, we have seen some new birds for the year. 

 

1-7-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker1-7-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 1-7-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker female1-7-22 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker female

 

Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers have been coming in to drink and bathe at the Bubbler. An immature male has been seen more often, the adult female has the white throat.

 

1-9-22 Song Sparrow1-9-22 Song Sparrow

1-12-22 Eastern Bluebird and Song Sparrow1-12-22 Eastern Bluebird and Song Sparrow

 

Song Sparrows are seen at different times of the year in our yard, but often in the winter. This bird saw the Christmas tree and stayed there a few days, hardly seen outside of it. I caught it trying to sneak in a bath with the bluebird yesterday.

 

1-11-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler1-11-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler 1-12-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler1-12-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler 1-13-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler1-13-22 Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

A Yellow-rumped Warbler was first seen in the pond cypress on 1-9-22. It has come in to get some bark butter and bathe the last couple days. What a splash artist!

 

1-10-22 FOY Pileated Woodpecker1-10-22 FOY Pileated Woodpecker 1-11-22 Pileated Woodpecker1-11-22 Pileated Woodpecker 1-11-22 Pileated Woodpecker and Brown Creeper1-11-22 Pileated Woodpecker and Brown Creeper

1-11-22 Pileated Woodpecker1-11-22 Pileated Woodpecker

 

The magnificent Pileated Woodpecker came to the suet feeder on 1-10-22 and the next day, it took to the bark butter as all the other woodpeckers have done. The male has the red 'moustache'. Either sex can reach 19.5" long compared to the Brown Creeper at 5.5".

 

1-12-22 Brown Creeper1-12-22 Brown Creeper 1-11-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch1-11-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

We are still seeing Brown Creepers and Red-breasted Nuthatches every day. It's winter, and soon their tolerances will be put to the test! 

 

1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird1-6-22 Eastern Bluebird

"Queedle, Queedle and Turalee!"

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/1/1-13-22-ways-help-winter-birds Thu, 13 Jan 2022 22:57:12 GMT
Into the New Year! 1-5-22 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/1/into-the-new-year-1-5-22 2021 ended with a beautiful, warm day and a high temperature of 67.8 degrees!

 

12-29-21 Carolina Wren12-29-21 Carolina Wren

12-29-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female12-29-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female 12-29-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch12-29-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 12-31-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch12-31-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

The Carolina Wren bounced and sang, the Red-breasted Nuthatches came in to feed and drink. The year ended with 116 species recorded, including 29 warblers and 86 bubbler species. Considering we spent some time away, it was a very good year for documenting birds.

 

New Year's Day brought a dreary, wet and cold start to the year. The high temperature was 54.2 at midnight and dropped all day to 25.8. Birds took the cue and fed all day.

 

1-1-22 Northern Flicker female1-1-22 Northern Flicker female 1-1-22 Northern Flicker1-1-22 Northern Flicker

 

Northern Flickers feasted on bark butter.

 

1-1-22 Northern Cardinal1-1-22 Northern Cardinal 1-1-22 White-throated Sparrow eating Cliff Goldenrod seeds1-1-22 White-throated Sparrow eating Cliff Goldenrod seeds

 

Northern Cardinals and others looked for seed on the ground. This White-throated Sparrow noshed on the seeds of Cliff Goldenrod (Solidago drummondii). This plant is a noted keystone plant in the herbaceous group because it supports 97 species of butterflies and moths, as well as providing nutritious seeds to birds in winter.

 

1-1-22 Brown Creeper1-1-22 Brown Creeper
1-1-22 White-breasted Nuthatches1-1-22 White-breasted Nuthatches  

1-3-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch1-3-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

1-4-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch1-4-22 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

Brown Creepers, White-breasted and Red-breasted Nuthatches were busy all day foraging and taking sips of water. The following day, we were quite astounded by a huge flock of Common Grackles that came in and literally took over the neighborhood. Dan said, "It's like a storm of blackbirds!" The birds surrounded us, and would swirl down and forage or drink, and then lift up and away.

 

1-2-22 Common Grackles

 

We could not remember seeing a flock this large, and after 40 minutes, they lifted up and we counted 14 yards full of them as they moved to the west. How to begin to count them? We guessed there to be 2,000-3,000 birds, a true spectacle of glossy iridescence!

 

1-2-22 Common Grackles and European Starling1-2-22 Common Grackles and European Starling 1-2-22 Common Grackles1-2-22 Common Grackles 1-2-22 Common Grackles1-2-22 Common Grackles 1-2-22 Common Grackle1-2-22 Common Grackle

1-2-22 European Starling1-2-22 European Starling

1-2-22 Red-winged Blackbird1-2-22 Red-winged Blackbird

 

There were a few European Starlings and Red-winged Blackbirds in the mix, but we could not pick out any Rusty Blackbirds.

 

1-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #11-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #1 1-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #21-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #2 1-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #31-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #3 1-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #41-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #4 1-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #51-4-22 Eastern Bluebird #5
 

Yesterday, five Eastern Bluebirds came to the bubbler to drink or bathe. It wasn't warm, but nearly 41 degrees.

 

1-4-22 Mourning Doves, resting1-4-22 Mourning Doves, resting

 

Later in the afternoon, the Mourning Doves were all fluffed up, napping. Makes one yawn just to look at them, they were so comfortable all tucked in. Conserving energy, feeding heavily and getting enough water is what it's all about right now!

 

12-31-21 Leucistic Gray Squirrel12-31-21 Leucistic Gray Squirrel

 

Happy New Year!

Hang in there, things are looking up. May 2022 be a better year for us all!

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2022/1/into-the-new-year-1-5-22 Wed, 05 Jan 2022 18:15:45 GMT
12-20-21 Approaching the Winter Solstice https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/12/12-20-21-approaching-the-winter-solstice Winter arrives on 12-21-21 with the shortest day and longest night of the year!

 

We're seeing a lot more activity on colder days now. Birds come in for water, to drink up and to bathe in. We've sure seen an interesting mix of species at times!

 

12-5-21 Eastern Bluebird12-5-21 Eastern Bluebird 12-5-21 Eastern Bluebirds12-5-21 Eastern Bluebirds 12-5-21 Eastern Bluebird12-5-21 Eastern Bluebird 12-8-21 Eastern Bluebird12-8-21 Eastern Bluebird

 

Eastern Bluebirds are welcome any time. Sometimes, it's just a pair, sometimes 4-6, and it may be mid-day or late afternoon. They even like to bathe in the rain.

 

12-10-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch12-10-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch
12-5-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch12-5-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

Red-breasted Nuthatches are small but not terribly shy and will keep trying to get to water even if there are other birds around. 

 

12-6-21 Cedar Waxwings12-6-21 Cedar Waxwings

 

Just for fun, put all the parts of those three together, and you'll have a Cedar Waxwing! These birds often come down in a flock with some at the sump puddle and others in the basin.

 

12-6-21 Downy Woodpecker and American Robin12-6-21 Downy Woodpecker and American Robin

 

A Downy Woodpecker waited a bit for an American Robin to finish out of respect for its much bigger bill.

  12-6-21 Eastern Bluebird, Cedar Waxwing and House Finch12-6-21 Eastern Bluebird, Cedar Waxwing and House Finch

 

A bluebird and waxwing were joined by a House Finch for a rainbow trio.

  12-6-21 Cedar Waxwing, Red-bellied Woodpecker and Northern Flicker12-6-21 Cedar Waxwing, Red-bellied Woodpecker and Northern Flicker

 

Here's another rare mix with a waxwing, female Red-bellied Woodpecker and a male Northern Flicker. The ol' watering hole sure draws them in.

  12-6-21 Rusty Blackbird12-6-21 Rusty Blackbird

 

The birds all get out of the way when blackbirds like this Rusty Blackbird show up. 

 

12-8-21 Hairy Woodpecker12-8-21 Hairy Woodpecker 12-8-21 Hairy Woodpecker female12-8-21 Hairy Woodpecker female

 

To my surprise, both the male and female Hairy Woodpeckers came to water one day, the male first. Like the Red-bellies, these birds don't come in often. It had been really warm and dry.

 

12-7-21 Brown Creeper12-7-21 Brown Creeper

12-11-21 House Finch and American Goldfinch12-11-21 House Finch and American Goldfinch

 

Between the 'Bubble' on the large rock, and the bubbling fountain in the basin, there are several levels of water for the birds to access and get a drink. The Brown Creeper, House Finch and American Goldfinch will show up at any of these. Now, let's talk about food!

 

12-2-21 Eastern Bluebird with insect12-2-21 Eastern Bluebird with insect

 

On Thursday, 12-2-21, the temperature climbed to a balmy 70.8 degrees. I stepped outside and heard bluebirds calling all around me. One caught an insect on the post for the bubbler cam. Others were swooping through the trees and over the leaves, catching other flying insects. It was a joyful scene as they called to each other. One big hurrah for their 'sushi' lunch!

 

12-2-21 Carolina Wren with a mealworm12-2-21 Carolina Wren with a mealworm

 

The Carolina Wren was one of the first birds to discover the tray feeder with mealworms. "Groucho Wren"?

 

12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird 12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird female12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird female 12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird 12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird female and House Finch12-7-21 Eastern Bluebird female and House Finch

 

The Eastern Bluebirds were checking out all the feeders, sunflower, safflower and peanut. But these are too hard for them to eat, so I must say, I was relieved to see them find the mealworms, sunflower chips and bark butter bits in that tray feeder. This is the food that may have gotten the breeding pair through the last tough winter when snow was on the ground for days. Now they know where this food is!

 

12-7-21 Northern Cardinal12-7-21 Northern Cardinal 12-7-21 Leucistic Northern Cardinal12-7-21 Leucistic Northern Cardinal

 

We've had several beautiful male Northern Cardinals around, but the second bird pictured is the first leucistic (lacking pigment) bird we've had in quite some time. That bird is flaunting those pink feathers!

 

12-11-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch12-11-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 12-11-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch12-11-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

The pair of Red-breasted Nuthatches continue to be seen nearly every day. They still have a preference for the chopped peanuts and they will often go to a branch like this and break them up into finer pieces to swallow or stash in a hiding place. Winter's upon us and they are getting ready!

 

12-6-21 Mourning Doves12-6-21 Mourning Doves

 

Another important need of birds, especially in winter, is a place to rest, to fluff up their feathers and huddle for warmth. The fallen leaves help keep the ground a bit warmer and we've seen up to twenty Mourning Doves around the bubbler, napping a good part of the day. Birds like American Goldfinches, House Finches and Cedar Waxwings will also rest in leaf-filled branches of young trees for some protection from the wind. While the birds are resting or finding food and water, other critters are busy in the woodland.

 

 

Better watch out! 
Santa's helpers are everywhere nowadays and they come in many forms!

We wish you Happy Holidays!

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/12/12-20-21-approaching-the-winter-solstice Mon, 20 Dec 2021 14:09:07 GMT
December! 12-1-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/12/december-12-1-21 December has arrived with a high temperature near 66 degrees for the day.

 

11-27-21 Dark-eyed Junco and Yellow-rumped Warbler11-27-21 Dark-eyed Junco and Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

A Dark-eyed Junco was told off by a female Yellow-rumped Warbler. Now, there's plenty of room, but some must make their case.

 

11-27-21 Blue Jay11-27-21 Blue Jay 11-27-21 White-throated Sparrow11-27-21 White-throated Sparrow

 

A Blue Jay squawks up a fuss when it comes in, as if to say, "Make way!" The White-throated Sparrow is a bit more shy.


11-27-21 American Robin, part of large flock11-27-21 American Robin, part of large flock 11-27-21 American Robin eating Blackhaw fruit11-27-21 American Robin eating Blackhaw fruit 11-27-21 American Robin grabbing Blackhaw fruit11-27-21 American Robin grabbing Blackhaw fruit

 

Another large flock of American Robins came in about 11:00 on Saturday, 11-27-21, and activity was non-stop until nearly sunset. That last robin has its third eyelid closed for protection. 


11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird

11-27-21 FOS Yellow-bellied Sapsucker11-27-21 FOS Yellow-bellied Sapsucker

 

With the robins were some new arrivals. At least six Rusty Blackbirds were in the mix, foraging in the leaves. The first Yellow-bellied Sapsucker dropped in, too. This young male didn't hesitate in getting right to the water. Wonder how long it had been since it had a drink?

 

11-27-21 Brown Creeper11-27-21 Brown Creeper 11-27-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-27-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 11-27-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch caching peanut11-27-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch caching peanut 11-27-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch caching peanut11-27-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch caching peanut

 

Two Brown Creepers and Red-breasted Nuthatches continue to be seen every day. The nuthatches follow their usual pattern shown by this female: grab a peanut, find a spot and cache it away for that cold day that's surely on the way.

 

11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing 11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings

11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings
11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings

 

The Cedar Waxwings have come down from the canopy several days, and they're a personal favorite.Their high pitched, "zee-zee-zee" call alerts me to their presence.

 

11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit 11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit 11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit 11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit11-27-21 Cedar Waxwing eating Blackhaw fruit 11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings eating Blackhaw fruit11-27-21 Cedar Waxwings eating Blackhaw fruit

 

Like the robins and bluebirds, the Cedar Waxwings love the fruit of the Blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium), which has much more nutrition for them than the invasive bush honeysuckle berries. We've planted more of these shrubs, they are a surefire way to help the birds! What fun it is to watch them devouring the drupes.
 

11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird 11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird 11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird11-27-21 FOS Rusty Blackbird

 

Rusty Blackbirds look for insects in the fallen leaves and also have been eating the flesh of the abundant acorns this year.

 

11-30-21 Cedar Waxwing11-30-21 Cedar Waxwing 11-30-21 Cedar Waxwing11-30-21 Cedar Waxwing 11-30-21 Cedar Waxwing11-30-21 Cedar Waxwing

 

More Cedar Waxwings, we'll take them!

  11-30-21 Northern Flicker and Downy Woodpecker, females11-30-21 Northern Flicker and Downy Woodpecker, females 11-27-21 Northern Flicker11-27-21 Northern Flicker

 

The Northern Flickers and Downy Woodpeckers are often at the Bubbler. The Downy waits its turn. What is the draw? Could it be that those sparkling sunbeams cast a mesmerizing spell?

 

12-1-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler12-1-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

Today, a male Yellow-rumped Warbler was mid-canopy, foraging in the oaks. It flew in closer and investigated the area. Each day has been different, with as many as 27 species. Feeders are stocked and fresh water is available for the birds.

 

Happy December! 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/12/december-12-1-21 Thu, 02 Dec 2021 02:50:43 GMT
Ever grateful...Happy Thanksgiving! 11-25-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/11/ever-grateful-happy-thanksgiving-11-25-21  

There was quite a surprise at the Bubbler early on Monday morning, 11-22-21.

 

Coyotes 11-22-21

 

These robust animals appear to be well-fed and may be the same pair caught on the trail cam last October.

 

11-16-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-16-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

11-22-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch spooked by Carolina Wren11-22-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch spooked by Carolina Wren

11-21-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-21-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch
11-17-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female11-17-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female

11-22-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female11-22-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female

11-22-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female11-22-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch female
 

 

Both Red-breasted Nuthatches come in daily, to drink, to find peanuts or seeds and even chase each other a bit. They're not present every year, so they always make me smile!

 

11-23-21 Brown Creeper11-23-21 Brown Creeper 11-19-21 Brown Creeper11-19-21 Brown Creeper

 

There have been one or two Brown Creepers seen every day as well. 
 

11-22-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler11-22-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler 11-22-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler11-22-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

A Yellow-rumped Warbler has come in to the water a couple times since the last post. And, the Eastern Bluebirds returned!

 

11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebirds11-21-21 Eastern Bluebirds 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird

11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird checking Blackhaw fruit11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird checking Blackhaw fruit

 

First, four males appeared. They were taking turns in the water, and one went to the Blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium). It perched there a while. Was it on sentry duty or checking the fruit? The Blackhaw were just saplings years ago, spared when we removed all the bush honeysuckle. They've grown, flowered and produced fall fruit for the birds for a few years now.

 

11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird pair11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird pair 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird pair11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird pair 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females and House Finch11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females and House Finch 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females and House Finch11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females and House Finch 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females and House Finch11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird females and House Finch

 

A female joined the male, and when the male left, two more females came in. The House Finch found a spot, too.

  11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird

 

Yet another male took over the basin, and chased out a chickadee to have the whole place to itself.

 

11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird at sump puddle11-21-21 Eastern Bluebird at sump puddle

 

The bluebirds had also been down at the sump puddle. There may have been 10-12 birds in total, it wasn't easy to track them all! We're just glad to know they're more comfortable coming in to the water when they need it. It has been very dry. We had about 0.4" of rain overnight, which may change this level of activity. 

 


11-21-21 Dark-eyed Juncos at sump puddle11-21-21 Dark-eyed Juncos at sump puddle

 

The Dark-eyed Juncos had also taken time to bathe there since the basin was full of bluebirds!

 

11-22-21 Red-bellied Woodpecker11-22-21 Red-bellied Woodpecker

 

Even a Red-bellied Woodpecker has been seen at the Bubbler lately. This species doesn't come to the water as reliably as the other woodpeckers.

 

11-22-21 American Robin11-22-21 American Robin

 

On Monday, a large flock of American Robins descended upon the yard, first to drink, and then to devour the Blackhaw drupes. 

  11-22-21 Northern Flicker and American Robin on Blackhaw11-22-21 Northern Flicker and American Robin on Blackhaw

 

A Northern Flicker was already in the shrub as the robins came in. Maybe the hard freeze that morning made the fruit more palatable.

  11-22-21 American Robin eating  Blackhaw fruit11-22-21 American Robin eating Blackhaw fruit 11-22-21 American Robin eating  Blackhaw fruit11-22-21 American Robin eating Blackhaw fruit 11-22-21 American Robin eating  Blackhaw fruit11-22-21 American Robin eating Blackhaw fruit 11-22-21 Eastern Gray Squirrel  eating  Blackhaw fruit11-22-21 Eastern Gray Squirrel eating Blackhaw fruit

 

The branches were swaying and bouncing with birds landing and grabbing the fruit. Each bird would eat two or three before taking off again. Even the squirrels couldn't resist trying them. It was a feast.



11-23-21 Eastern Bluebird11-23-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-23-21 Eastern Bluebird female eating Blackhaw fruit11-23-21 Eastern Bluebird female eating Blackhaw fruit

 

The next morning, a pair of bluebirds came in early to beat the robins to what was left. The male went to the Bubbler and the female had some breakfast. It's easy to see why our native plants are perfectly suited to our beautiful native birds! 

 

If you'd like to view all the photos since the last blog post, grab a cuppa and begin here:  Photos since 11-14-21

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/11/ever-grateful-happy-thanksgiving-11-25-21 Thu, 25 Nov 2021 14:02:17 GMT
Mid-November already! 11-14-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/11/mid-november-already-11-14-21  

It has been a beautiful fall and now, the winds of change are blowing!

 

10-25-21 Golden-crowned Kinglets10-25-21 Golden-crowned Kinglets 10-25-21 Golden-crowned Kinglet10-25-21 Golden-crowned Kinglet

 

Before Halloween, Golden-crowned Kinglets were enjoying the Bubbler. I saw another one yesterday. That golden crown becomes a fiery orange when males get excited. 
 

 

11-13-21 Late Ruby-crowned Kinglet11-13-21 Late Ruby-crowned Kinglet
11-13-21 Late Ruby-crowned Kinglet11-13-21 Late Ruby-crowned Kinglet

 

Yesterday, 11-13-21, it was a surprise to see a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, usually further south by the first week of November. This is a good opportunity to look at both the kinglets and notice their subtle differences.

 

11-10-21  Brown Creeper with insect11-10-21 Brown Creeper with insect 11-13-21 Brown Creeper11-13-21 Brown Creeper
 

A pair of Brown Creepers has been chasing each other around the trunks of trees as they scoop insects out of the bark.

 

11-12-21 Dark-eyed Junco11-12-21 Dark-eyed Junco 11-13-21 Dark-eyed Junco11-13-21 Dark-eyed Junco

 

There were so many birds here yesterday, at least two dozen Dark-eyed Juncos were feeding and drinking.

 

11-13-21 White-throated Sparrow11-13-21 White-throated Sparrow
 

I've been hearing White-throated Sparrows and finally, several came into view.

 

11-13-21 White-breasted Nuthatch11-13-21 White-breasted Nuthatch 11-13-21 White-breasted Nuthatch with crossed bill11-13-21 White-breasted Nuthatch with crossed bill

 

White-breasted Nuthatches were active yesterday. The second bird looks like it has a crossed bill upon closer inspection. That's unusual.

 

11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 11-13-21 Carolina Chickadee and Red-breasted Nuthatch11-13-21 Carolina Chickadee and Red-breasted Nuthatch 11-13-21 Carolina Chickadee chased off by Red-breasted Nuthatch11-13-21 Carolina Chickadee chased off by Red-breasted Nuthatch 11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch11-13-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

It looks like we may have a pair of Red-breasted Nuthatches here for the season. The male has a black head and the female's is more of a steely blue. The female chased the male several times and was not having the chickadee on it's personal peanut feeder! Gotta love that tail! Both birds were totally focused on grabbing a peanut or seed and caching it in the bark of a nearby tree. Sounds like homesteading to me.

 

11-13-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler11-13-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler 11-13-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler female11-13-21 Yellow-rumped Warbler female

 

There also was a pair of Yellow-rumped Warblers at the Bubbler yesterday. The male is in the first photo, female in the second.


 

11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-13-21 House Finch, American Goldfinches and Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 House Finch, American Goldfinches and Eastern Bluebird 11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird pair11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird pair 11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird 11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird11-13-21 Eastern Bluebird

 

We had another little thrill when the family of Eastern Bluebirds came in! The breeding pair survived the winter and had a brood, we've seen them occasionally. Yesterday was their first time at the Bubbler this fall. There were at least four males and two females. They sure brighten up the woodland on a gray day. It was non-stop activity with these and more birds for about 3 hours. Today, it's windy and they've been hunkered down.

 

Do check out the Halloween post in case you missed it.

Enjoy the last bit of fall color, and Happy Thanksgiving!

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/11/mid-november-already-11-14-21 Sun, 14 Nov 2021 22:27:44 GMT
Happy Halloween! 10-31-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/happy-halloween-10-31-21 Happy Halloween, Trick-or-treaters! 

 

Here are just a few of the many who have been to Shady Oaks lately.

Some are more interested in tricks, but we hope you'll enjoy this special treat. 

 

Halloween Parade 2021Some of our festive trick-or-treaters are here!

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/happy-halloween-10-31-21 Sun, 31 Oct 2021 16:00:00 GMT
Celebrating 21 years with the Bubbler! https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/celebrating-21-years-with-the-bubbler 10-22-2000 Bubbler running!10-22-2000 Bubbler running! 10-22-2000

9-28-21 Bubbler area9-28-21 Bubbler area

The Bubbler is 21 years old!

 

10-1-21 Ruby-throat's BathBefore heading south, this young Ruby-throated Hummingbird took a "bubble-bath".

 

For the very first time, a Ruby-throated Hummingbird came to bathe before heading south for the winter. Our last sighting of one was on 10-3-21. Through the years, the Bubbler has attracted all sorts and sizes of birds. As of today, the Bubbler count is at 123 species plus 2 hybrids. 

 

 

Recently, I was informed by a member of the Missouri Bird Records Committee that the Sapsucker that came to the Bubbler in February had characteristics that were within accepted parameters for a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. So, even with red feathers on the nape and white feathers on the chin, it was not accepted as a Red-naped Sapsucker. I'm not really disappointed, I'm just grateful that I was able to get clear photos of these details for evaluation by the experts. Birds sure keep you on your toes! 

 

10-10-21 Blue-headed Vireo10-10-21 Blue-headed Vireo 10-10-21 Blue-headed Vireo10-10-21 Blue-headed Vireo 10-10-21 Blue-headed Vireo10-10-21 Blue-headed Vireo

 

Another Blue-headed Vireo came in on Sunday, 10-10-21. They sure do love to splash-bathe!

 

10-12-21 Black-throated Green Warbler10-12-21 Black-throated Green Warbler 10-12-21 Nashville Warbler10-12-21 Nashville Warbler 10-13-21 Bay-breasted Warbler10-13-21 Bay-breasted Warbler 10-20-21 Tennessee Warbler10-20-21 Tennessee Warbler

 

Warblers have been coming through, in smaller flocks. Black-throated Green and Nashville, Bay-breasted and Tennessee Warblers have been pretty consistently seen through this last period. (Still waiting for a late surprise...)

 

10-18-21 Brown Creeper FOS10-18-21 Brown Creeper FOS 10-18-21 Brown Creeper10-18-21 Brown Creeper

 

Three Brown Creepers came in on Friday, 10-15-21. It took a few days before I could catch one with the camera. They blend in so well!

 

10-15-21 FOS Hermit Thrush10-15-21 FOS Hermit Thrush
 

Our first Hermit Thrush of fall showed up at the Bubbler the same day as the creepers. It was seen again the next morning, before sunrise,  and not for very long. 


10-18-21 FOS Winter Wren10-18-21 FOS Winter Wren 10-18-21 Winter Wren10-18-21 Winter Wren 10-18-21 Winter Wren10-18-21 Winter Wren

 

This diminutive skulker was seen hopping about the brush pile in the sump puddle area, playing hide-and-seek with a chipmunk. The Winter Wren has been in the Bubbler area a few times, foraging in the leaves nearby. It's always pretty dark when this bird decides to get in!

 

10-21-21 Four Ruby-crowned Kinglets10-21-21 Four Ruby-crowned Kinglets

 

Today, I had just written a friend who had commented on how much she enjoys the blog. "It transports me for a while from my everyday worries," she said. I admitted that it's been a struggle for me, too, if I'm honest. Writing the blog helps me to stay positive about creating habitat and excited about connecting to nature as the reward. Nature is inspiring! And each of us can do more to help nature and in turn, help upcoming generations of critters and kids. We are part of the solution.

 

Just as I finished writing to her, the sun broke through and I saw these tiny birds at the Bubbler. A regal court of FIVE Ruby-crowned Kinglets were flitting about, jumping in and out! I managed to get four in a few photos, at least three of them were males.  

 

10-21-21 Four Ruby-crowned Kinglets10-21-21 Four Ruby-crowned Kinglets
 

10-21-21 Three Ruby-crowned Kinglets10-21-21 Three Ruby-crowned Kinglets 10-21-21 Two Ruby-crowned Kinglets10-21-21 Two Ruby-crowned Kinglets 10-21-21 Ruby-crowned Kinglet10-21-21 Ruby-crowned Kinglet 10-21-21 Ruby-crowned Kinglet10-21-21 Ruby-crowned Kinglet 10-21-21 Ruby-crowned Kinglet10-21-21 Ruby-crowned Kinglet

 

A few minutes of bright and cheerful avian activity can turn anyone's day around!

 

----------

Check back at noon on Halloween for a special parade of trick-or-treaters!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/celebrating-21-years-with-the-bubbler Thu, 21 Oct 2021 20:57:43 GMT
Fall Big Day Report 10-10-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/10/fall-big-day  

"Let me keep my mind on what matters most which

is my work which is mostly standing still

and learning to be astonished."

~ Mary Oliver

 

10-2-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch, 3 Nashville and Black-throated Green Warblers10-2-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch, 3 Nashville and Black-throated Green Warblers 10-2-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch10-2-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 10-2-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch10-2-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 10-2-21 Nashville Warblers10-2-21 Nashville Warblers 10-3-21 Black-throated Green Warbler10-3-21 Black-throated Green Warbler

10-3-21 Black-throated Green Warbler10-3-21 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

It has been kind of slow lately. It's been a mild fall and temperatures will hit the mid-80's again today. But a storm front is due in tonight and that may bring in some late birds. Let's talk about some of what has been seen and discovered in these first ten days of October.

 

A Red-breasted Nuthatch was skittish about getting in with three Nashville Warblers and a Black-throated Green. It's easier to make them all out in those next few images. 
 

10-3-21 Bay-breasted Warbler10-3-21 Bay-breasted Warbler 10-3-21 Bay-breasted Warbler10-3-21 Bay-breasted Warbler

 

Bay-breasted Warblers have also been in the mix.

 

10-3-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler10-3-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler

 

A female Chestnut-sided Warbler came in with a small flock.

  10-4-21 FOS Golden-crowned Kinglet10-4-21 FOS Golden-crowned Kinglet

 

On 10-4-21, our FOS Golden-crowned Kinglet popped into view. I heard their "tsee-tsee-tsee" call several times yesterday.

 

10-4-21 Barred Owl10-4-21 Barred Owl 10-4-21 Barred Owl10-4-21 Barred Owl

 

One evening, we had come in to make dinner and the birds started fussing. They usually do when a large predator comes in! It was one of the Barred Owls, ready to hunt for its own dinner, or is it breakfast for them?

 

10-7-21 Common Yellowthroat female10-7-21 Common Yellowthroat female 10-7-21 Common Yellowthroat female10-7-21 Common Yellowthroat female

 

Not much here on 10-7-21, but at lunchtime I spotted this small bird in a clove currant (Ribes odoratum) by the pond. When I returned with the camera, it had jumped into the pickerel weed (Pontederia cordata). The plants provided great cover for this little bird to bathe in.

 

10-7-21 Common YellowthroatIn the pickerel weed in the pond

 

Birding is nothing if not a humbling experience. Exciting, yes, challenging, yes, but it definitely can be humbling! As I watched the little bird and wanted to be sure of its I.D., I thought it was a female Common Yellowthroat. I have usually found males here in the fall, though. Then, I remembered a bird that I had called a Common Yellowthroat that was in the garden six years ago, on 8-24-15. As I studied and researched young female birds that can be confusing, I figured out that the bird in the garden was NOT a Common Yellowthroat at all, but a young female Mourning Warbler. 

 

 

Now it seems so obvious, but it all depends on experience. I'm so grateful for these experiences and the chance to correct my error. I don't see these species that often. We can learn so much from our mistakes. We just have to figure out that we made them, first! Birding in the fall is all about subtlety with these young birds.

 

Yesterday was Fall Big Day for birding, 10-9-21. Since we sit kind of low in the neighborhood, it can take a while for the insects to warm up and start moving around so the birds can find them. After all that foraging, the little flock was ready to bathe. A Northern Flicker had been in the basin, and when it left, the whole little flock came in together. 

 

Big Day 10-9-21

 

How many birds did you count in that video? There were Tennessee, Black-throated Green and Nashville Warblers, a Tufted Titmouse and a Carolina Wren. (The wren seemed a bit put out to have to share!) Some birds may have been repeats, but this kind of "flurry" is what keeps things interesting. Even after 21 years of watching birds at the bubbler, I never know when this will happen for sure, However, when it does, it's truly uplifting to stand there and simply "be astonished"!

 

To see all the birds since the last post, begin here: October birds

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/10/fall-big-day Sun, 10 Oct 2021 18:57:36 GMT
September, it's a wrap! 9-30-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/september-its-a-wrap-9-30-21

 

The last day of September began with wispy cirrus clouds and filtered sun. Lovely!

 

9-22-21 FOS Ruby-crowned Kinglet9-22-21 FOS Ruby-crowned Kinglet 9-24-21 Red-eyed Vireo immature9-24-21 Red-eyed Vireo immature 9-23-21 Magnolia Warbler9-23-21 Magnolia Warbler

 

The first of fall Ruby-crowned Kinglet came in on, what else, the first day of Fall, 9-22-21. An immature Red-eyed Vireo visited the bubbler for the first time. Look closely, it has brown eyes, thus it is a first year bird. Magnolia Warblers have been around the last week, too.

 

9-28-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird9-28-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 9-28-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird9-28-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 9-30-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird9-30-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird 9-30-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird9-30-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird

 

A young male Ruby-throated Hummingbird has come in to bathe two days. It has one little red feather below its right eye, so I'm quite sure this is the same bird. It perched and preened in the smooth hydrangea before going back to the jewelweed. 

 

9-28-21 Northern Parula and American Goldfinch9-28-21 Northern Parula and American Goldfinch 9-28-21 Northern Parula and American Goldfinch9-28-21 Northern Parula and American Goldfinch

9-28-21 Northern Parula9-28-21 Northern Parula

 

A female Northern Parula had a bit of trouble getting to the water, the American Goldfinch wasn't having it. It looked at the basin and decided to come back later and it had the place all to itself. Listen for the Red-bellied Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, American Crows and other birds in the background. 

 

9-28-21 Northern Parula in the bubbleNorthern Parula's bubble bath

 

Now, wasn't that fun! 

 

9-30-21 Northern Parula9-30-21 Northern Parula 9-30-21 Northern Parula9-30-21 Northern Parula

 

A strongly marked male Northern Parula was at the bubbler on this last day, 9-30-21. The white belly is much more pronounced when it's all fluffed out!

 

9-28-21 Black-throated Green Warbler9-28-21 Black-throated Green Warbler 9-28-21 Black-throated Green Warbler9-28-21 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

Black-throated Green Warblers have been easy to find, foraging in the viburnums and golden currant.

  9-28-21 Black-throated Green and Tennessee Warblers9-28-21 Black-throated Green and Tennessee Warblers 9-28-21 Black-throated Green and Tennessee Warbler9-28-21 Black-throated Green and Tennessee Warbler 9-28-21 Black-throated Green Warbler9-28-21 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

Black-throated Greens are also frequent visitors to the water features, along with Tennessee Warblers.

 

9-28-21 Nashville Warbler9-28-21 Nashville Warbler 9-28-21 Nashville Warbler and Eurasian Tree Sparrow9-28-21 Nashville Warbler and Eurasian Tree Sparrow

 

A little Nashville Warbler studied the dripper before going in, and then was joined by a Eurasian Tree Sparrow.

 

9-28-21 Coooper's Hawk9-28-21 Coooper's Hawk

 

An adult Cooper's Hawk got in a late dip one evening.

 

9-30-21 FOS Blue-headed Vireo9-30-21 FOS Blue-headed Vireo

 

Our first of Fall Blue-headed Vireo showed up on this last day of the month, too.

 

9-30-12 Two Red-breasted Nuthatches9-30-12 Two Red-breasted Nuthatches

 

I saw a bluish-backed bird flitting around the sump puddle and on closer inspection, there were two female Red-breasted Nuthatches there, getting quick sips of water.

 

9-30-21 Yellow-bellied Flycatcher9-30-21 Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

 

Another Yellow-bellied Flycatcher was busy in the woodland. Now, it's on to the last quarter of the year with October's arrival!

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/10/september-its-a-wrap-9-30-21 Fri, 01 Oct 2021 11:06:36 GMT
Third week of September migrants, 9-21-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/9/third-week-of-september-migrants-9-21-21 A Change in the Weather!

Without winds from the north to help them move along, warblers have been circling the 'hood, fattening up to be ready for the next frontal push. That front came through overnight, with 2.37" of rain here. The following warblers have been seen in differing groups of 8 or 9 nearly every day.

 

9-16-21 American Redstart9-16-21 American Redstart 9-15-21 American Redstart and Magnolia Warbler9-15-21 American Redstart and Magnolia Warbler

 

American Redstarts and Magnolia Warblers

 

9-15-21 Ovenbird9-15-21 Ovenbird

9-19-21 Bay-breasted Warbler9-19-21 Bay-breasted Warbler

 

Ovenbirds and Bay-breasted Warblers


9-19-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler9-19-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-19-21 Black-throated Green Warbler9-19-21 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

Chestnut-sided and Black-throated Green Warblers

 

9-17-21 Black-and-white Warbler9-17-21 Black-and-white Warbler 9-19-21 Tennessee Warbler9-19-21 Tennessee Warbler 9-17-21 Nashville Warbler9-17-21 Nashville Warbler

 

Black-and-white, Tennessee and Nashville Warblers.

 

9-17-21 Black-and-white Warbler9-17-21 Black-and-white Warbler

 

They are all looking for food in the form of caterpillars and other small insects. Oops! Missed one!

 

9-20-21 Blackburnian Warbler9-20-21 Blackburnian Warbler

 

The second Blackburnian Warbler of fall was seen just yesterday. To add to the mix, there have been new arrivals!

 

9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch9-18-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

A female Red-breasted Nuthatch came in to the Bubbler, becoming Bubbler Bird #87 for the year. She had quite a reach to get a drink, but did this repeatedly. What Olympian strength in those tiny legs! 

 

9-19-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch9-19-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 9-19-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch9-19-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch 9-19-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch9-19-21 Red-breasted Nuthatch

 

A beautiful male has been coming in, there may actually be two males. We are hoping this irruptive species will be around this winter.

 

9-17-21 Wilson's Warbler, immature9-17-21 Wilson's Warbler, immature 9-17-21 Wilson's Warbler, immature9-17-21 Wilson's Warbler, immature 9-17-21 Wilson's Warbler, immature9-17-21 Wilson's Warbler, immature

 

An immature Wilson's Warbler came in on Friday, 9/17/21. It explored every inch of the bubbler area, cementing this location into its genetic code to pass along to its offspring.The longer they stay, the more information they gather. It's always amazing to watch a young bird when it does this.

 

9-19-21 FOS Northern Parula9-19-21 FOS Northern Parula 9-19-21 FOS Northern Parula9-19-21 FOS Northern Parula

 

Our FOS Northern Parula came in on Sunday, 9/19/21. It was hesitant to get in, the flock had started a splash-fest! 

 

9-19-21 Tennessee Warbler, Ovenbird and Chestnut-sided Warbler9-19-21 Tennessee Warbler, Ovenbird and Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-19-21 Chestnut-sided, House Finch, Ovenbird, Tennessee and Black-and-white Warblers9-19-21 Chestnut-sided, House Finch, Ovenbird, Tennessee and Black-and-white Warblers 9-19-21 House Finch, Tennessee Warblers, and Bay-breasted Warblers9-19-21 House Finch, Tennessee Warblers, and Bay-breasted Warblers 9-19-21 Tennessee and Bay-breasted Warblers9-19-21 Tennessee and Bay-breasted Warblers

 

It was a good time for them and for me, too. Here is my checklist for that 35 minutes:  https://ebird.org/checklist/S94910559

 

To view all the photos since the last post, begin here:  Birds since 9/14/21

 

Enjoy this change in the weather! 

The Autumn Equinox is tomorrow, 9-22-21 at 2:21 p.m. CDT here in St. Louis.

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/9/third-week-of-september-migrants-9-21-21 Tue, 21 Sep 2021 16:00:37 GMT
Early September migrants and more 9-14-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/9/early-september-migrants-and-more-9-14-21 Birds continue to be on the move.

 

9-8-21 Swainson's Thrush9-8-21 Swainson's Thrush

 

The first Swainson's Thrush of fall showed up on Sunday, 9-5-21. It was a day with six warbler species, too.

 

9-8-21 Yellow-bellied Flycatcher9-8-21 Yellow-bellied Flycatcher 9-8-21 Yellow-bellied Flycatcher9-8-21 Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

 

A Yellow-bellied Flycatcher was #85 for the year at the Bubbler on 9-8-21. 

 

9-8-21 Bay-breasted Warbler9-8-21 Bay-breasted Warbler 9-8-21 Bay-breasted Warbler9-8-21 Bay-breasted Warbler

 

A Bay-breasted Warbler was a first of fall bird that Wednesday.

  9-8-21 Ovenbird9-8-21 Ovenbird 9-8-21 Ovenbird9-8-21 Ovenbird

 

An Ovenbird walked in "the back door" to enjoy splashing about. Another FOS (first of season) bird was heard and seen, a Red-breasted Nuthatch. It was in too big of a hurry for a photo.

 

9-8-21 Canada Warbler9-8-21 Canada Warbler
 

This Canada Warbler was seen several times throughout that day, bringing the warbler total to seven.

 

9-9-21 FOS Northern Waterthrush9-9-21 FOS Northern Waterthrush

 

On Thursday, 9-9-21 a cool front had moved through making for a delightfully cool day with ten warbler species of 32 in total. This Northern Waterthrush was at the bubbler very early in the morning. 

 

9-9-21 American Redstart9-9-21 American Redstart 9-9-21 Black-and-white Warbler9-9-21 Black-and-white Warbler 9-9-21 Bay-breasted Warbler9-9-21 Bay-breasted Warbler

 

American Redstarts, Black-and-white and Bay-breasted Warblers were present.

 

9-9-21 Magnolia Warbler9-9-21 Magnolia Warbler 9-9-21 Ovenbird9-9-21 Ovenbird 9-9-21 Blue-winged Warbler9-9-21 Blue-winged Warbler

 

Magnolia Warblers, the Ovenbird and a Blue-winged Warbler joined in the activity.

 

9-9-21 Bay-breasted and Blue-winged Warblers9-9-21 Bay-breasted and Blue-winged Warblers 9-9-21 Bay-breasted, Blue-winged and Magnolia Warblers9-9-21 Bay-breasted, Blue-winged and Magnolia Warblers 9-9-21 Bay-breasted and Blue-winged Warblers9-9-21 Bay-breasted and Blue-winged Warblers

 

There was some discussion between the Bay-breasted and Blue-winged, but they worked it out and a Magnolia Warbler came to the party.

 

9-9-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler9-9-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler

 

A Chestnut-sided was added to the warbler list.

 

9-10-21 Scarlet Tanager9-10-21 Scarlet Tanager

 

The female Scarlet Tanager is the second we've seen this fall.

 

9-10-21 Northern Cardinal9-10-21 Northern Cardinal 9-10-21 Golden-winged Warbler9-10-21 Golden-winged Warbler 9-10-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler9-10-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler 9-10-21 Chestnut-sided and Golden-winged Warblers with Northern Cardinal9-10-21 Chestnut-sided and Golden-winged Warblers with Northern Cardinal 9-10-21 Chestnut-sided and Golden-winged Warblers with Northern Cardinal9-10-21 Chestnut-sided and Golden-winged Warblers with Northern Cardinal

 

A young male Northern Cardinal explored the Bubbler area for the first time on its own. Golden-winged and Chestnut-sided Warblers decided the larger bird was no threat to them!

  9-11-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler9-11-21 Chestnut-sided Warbler

 

The Chestnut-sided Warbler returned later and had the "bubble" on the large rock all to itself.

 

To see all the photos:  

Since 9-4-21

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/9/early-september-migrants-and-more-9-14-21 Wed, 15 Sep 2021 02:26:13 GMT
A "worm", a "confusion" and a "glittering" of birds! 9-4-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/9/a-worm-a-confusion-and-a-glittering-of-birds-9-4-21 Collective nouns for groups of birds can be very descriptive, especially in migration!

 

It began with a "worm" of nearly 30 American Robins, flying into cover in the woods. Small birds seemed to pop out on branches in every level of the canopy, partially hidden by the fully grown leaves. It was a mini-fallout of migrants on Tuesday, 8-31-21 right about 10:30 a.m. They all had "the hangries!" 

 

8-31-21 Blue-winged Warbler on pawpaw (Asimina triloba)8-31-21 Blue-winged Warbler on pawpaw (Asimina triloba) 8-31-21 Black-and-white Warbler8-31-21 Black-and-white Warbler 8-31-21 Magnolia Warbler8-31-21 Magnolia Warbler 8-31-21 Magnolia Warbler8-31-21 Magnolia Warbler 8-31-21 Tennessee and Magnolia Warblers8-31-21 Tennessee and Magnolia Warblers 8-31-21 Magnolia and Black-and-white Warblers8-31-21 Magnolia and Black-and-white Warblers

 

The "confusion" of warblers was soon revealed. A Blue-winged Warbler grabbed a caterpillar from a pawpaw leaf (Asimina triloba). As their hunger subsided a bit, the birds came to the bubbler. Black-and-white, Magnolia, and Tennessee vied for the choicest spot to bathe.

 

8-31-21 Chestnut-sided Warblers8-31-21 Chestnut-sided Warblers 8-31-21 Blackburnian Warbler and American Robin8-31-21 Blackburnian Warbler and American Robin  

 

A pair of Chestnut-sided Warblers got in while birds were also seen at the sump puddle. Robins were there looking for food under the wet leaves and one chased a Blackburnian Warbler out of its way.

 

8-31-21 Nashville Warbler8-31-21 Nashville Warbler

 

A Nashville Warbler was grabbing insects off of Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)

 

8-31-21 Golden-winged/ Lawrence's Warbler female8-31-21 Golden-winged/ Lawrence's Warbler female 8-31-21 Golden-winged Warbler8-31-21 Golden-winged Warbler 8-31-21 Golden-winged Warbler8-31-21 Golden-winged Warbler 8-31-21 Golden-winged Warbler8-31-21 Golden-winged Warbler

 

A female Golden-winged Warbler was very interested in the small bubbler rock in the basin. The contortions it went through to bathe were impressive!

 

8-31-21 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers8-31-21 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers 8-31-21 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers8-31-21 Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers

 

The Blue-winged Warbler just had to get in on this action. It's so tempting to put words in their little mouths, but I'll leave it to your imagination!

 

8-31-21 American Redstart8-31-21 American Redstart 8-31-21 American Redstart8-31-21 American Redstart 8-31-21 Canada Warbler8-31-21 Canada Warbler 8-31-21 Canada Warbler8-31-21 Canada Warbler 8-31-21 Baltimore Oriole immature male8-31-21 Baltimore Oriole immature male

 

That day ended with ten warbler species, including an American Redstart and a Canada Warbler. The Canada brought the Bubbler Bird count to 83 for the year. Another interesting bird that came in was an immature Baltimore Oriole. Wish the robins hadn't chased it off so I could have gotten a better image! What a beautiful, bright russet color it was.

 

9-1-21 Black-and-white Warblers9-1-21 Black-and-white Warblers 9-1-21 Magnolia Warbler9-1-21 Magnolia Warbler 9-1-21 Blue-winged Warbler9-1-21 Blue-winged Warbler 9-1-21 Black-throated Green Warbler9-1-21 Black-throated Green Warbler 9-1-21 Black-throated Green Warbler9-1-21 Black-throated Green Warbler

 

September began with four warbler species on the first. Black-and-white, Magnolias and Blue-winged Warblers were still here. A Black-throated Green Warbler was another FOS (first of season) bird.

 

8-31-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird8-31-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird

 

One cannot speak of migration without some mention of the "glittering" of hummingbirds we've all been seeing! Keep those feeders clean and filled. They need the energy to catch tiny insects and put on some weight. 

 

9-3-21 Eastern Bluebird immature male9-3-21 Eastern Bluebird immature male 9-3-21 Eastern Bluebird immature male9-3-21 Eastern Bluebird immature male

Last but certainly not least, a scruffy, immature Eastern Bluebird had been feeding in the canopy and came to check out the Bubbler yesterday morning. We're glad to know that our restored habitat is supporting this species. Many bluebirds were lost in that last hard freeze in April throughout Missouri. I had seen two young birds in late July, so this bird may be from a second brood, its yellow gape is still visible. 

 

Enjoy the new season!

 Need a review?  Fall Warbler Species

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/9/a-worm-a-confusion-and-a-glittering-of-birds-9-4-21 Sat, 04 Sep 2021 19:17:58 GMT
What a hoot! 8-25-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/8/what-a-hoot-8-25-21  

Barred Owls in the 'hood

 

5-16-10 Barred Owlet5-16-10 Barred OwletMargy Terpstra

 

The first time we found nesting Barred Owls was in the spring of 2010. This species doesn't build a nest, but will use tree cavities or old hawk or squirrel nests. We had seen a pair actively guarding the crotch of a pin oak tree, chasing squirrels away. On 5-16-10, a young nestling was seen peeking out of the hole.

 

5-17-10 Barred Owlet5-17-10 Barred OwletMargy Terpstra

 

The following day, the young bird climbed up out of the cavity for a better view of the new world it was about to enter. 

 

5-18-10 Barred Owlet5-18-10 Barred OwletMargy Terpstra

 

On 5-18-10, it was time to spread its wings! It would attempt to fly, then ascend another tree by using its bill and talons to grab onto the bark and flap its wings to climb up the trunk. It was quite a memorable evening as we watched this young bird explore the trees.

 

5-18-10 Barred Owl5-18-10 Barred OwlMargy Terpstra

 

The ever watchful female was close by, guarding its offspring. Jump ahead eleven years to this week.

 

8-21-21 Barred Owlet8-21-21 Barred Owlet

 

On Saturday, 8-21-21 around 7:15 a.m., a Barred Owl flew from the maple tree down to the stream bed of the pond. Took this photo through the gazebo screen with my phone to document. It went down to the water and then I was able to go inside without disturbing it. 

 

8-21-21 Barred Owlet8-21-21 Barred Owlet

 

Hmmm, I thought. "He wasn't fuzzy, was he?" Well, its head certainly was.

  8-21-21 Barred Owlet8-21-21 Barred Owlet

 

The bird hunted from the sugar maple and then flew to the east slope, working on low branches. A couple days later, it was back in the pond cypress, shaking water off its feathers and preening. In the comparison photo below, it's pretty clear we have a new kid on the block!

 

8-23-21 Barred Owl composite8-23-21 Barred Owl composite

 

This young owlet was curious and energetically explored our woodland, including the Bubbler area. This all happened just after noon in the brightest part of the day on Monday, 8-23-21. It was hot and humid, but as you'll see in the video, the bird found its own way to cool off!

  8-23-21 Barred Owlet8-23-21 Barred Owlet 8-23-21 Barred Owlet8-23-21 Barred Owlet 8-23-21 Barred Owlet8-23-21 Barred Owlet 8-23-21 Barred Owlet8-23-21 Barred Owlet 8-23-21 Barred Owlet8-23-21 Barred Owlet 8-23-21 Barred Owlet8-23-21 Barred Owlet

Barred Owlet 8-23-21Barred Owlet makes a splash!

 

What a hoot! 

To learn more about Barred Owls, check out this page:

Barred Owl

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/8/what-a-hoot-8-25-21 Wed, 25 Aug 2021 13:49:17 GMT
First migrants of Fall 8-18-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/8/first-migrants-of-fall-8-18-21  

Into fall migration!

8-11-21 Northern Flicker and American Robins8-11-21 Northern Flicker and American Robins 8-11-21 Northern Flicker female and American Robin8-11-21 Northern Flicker female and American Robin 8-12-21 American Robin immature8-12-21 American Robin immature

 

The first cool front of August followed a very warm week. A lot of robins were seen at the bubbler, and like this immature bird, they were panting to release heat. Northern Flickers pushed in for their turns at the crowded basin. 

 

8-12-21 Blue Jay8-12-21 Blue Jay 8-12-21 Blue Jay8-12-21 Blue Jay 8-12-21 Blue Jay8-12-21 Blue Jay

 

A Blue Jay squawked and splashed, getting in several times, enthusiastically drenching its feathers. Thursday evening, the storm front moved through with strong winds and rain, the temperature dropped twenty-five degrees. Saturday, the robins had moved on and our first migrants showed up.

 

8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female Bubbler Bird #788-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female Bubbler Bird #78

 

Did you find the bird? It had grabbed a small winged insect to eat. It's a female Kentucky Warbler, first female that I've seen here. 

 

8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female Bubbler Bird #788-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female Bubbler Bird #78

8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female with insect8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female with insect 8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female 8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female 8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female 8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female

8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female8-14-21 FOS Kentucky Warbler female
 

The warbler found more to eat, then bathed and flew to the native hydrangea to shake its tail feathers and preen. Just as it finished, another bird flew in.

 

8-14-21 FOS Scarlet Tanager female8-14-21 FOS Scarlet Tanager female 8-14-21 FOS Scarlet Tanager female8-14-21 FOS Scarlet Tanager female

 

This was a female Scarlet Tanager, probably a first year bird. The plumage of this species is a bit greener than the Summer Tanager's orangey hue. It's a bit smaller bird and the bill is also proportionately smaller.

 

8-14-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird8-14-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird

8-16-21 American Goldfinch on Purple Coneflower8-16-21 American Goldfinch on Purple Coneflower 8-16-21 American Goldfinch female on Purple Coneflower8-16-21 American Goldfinch female on Purple Coneflower

 

Usual suspects continue to visit the feeders and the garden. The Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are looking a bit ragged! Goldfinches have been busy at the coneflowers. 

 

8-13-21 E. Tiger Swallowtail female on Purple Coneflower8-13-21 E. Tiger Swallowtail female on Purple Coneflower 8-13-21 Monarch caterpillar on Marsh Milkweed8-13-21 Monarch caterpillar on Marsh Milkweed 8-16-21 Monarch laying eggs on Marsh Milkweed8-16-21 Monarch laying eggs on Marsh Milkweed

 

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail butterflies have been at the coneflowers, too. The females can be black or yellow. Monarch caterpillars are still feeding on the Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) and another butterfly has been ovipositing on the plants.

 

8-16-21 American Bumble Bee male on Ironweed (Vernonia arkansana)8-16-21 American Bumble Bee male on Ironweed (Vernonia arkansana)

 

A male American Bumble Bee was found gathering pollen at the Ironweed (Vernonia arkansana).

(I had misidentified this bee. Thanks to Kathy Bildner and James Faupel for correctly identifying it for me!)

 

8-8-21 Eastern Cottontail eating violets8-8-21 Eastern Cottontail eating violets

 

An Eastern Cottontail Rabbit was enjoying violets near the bubbler. There have been several in and out of the garden on a regular basis. Now, do you recall the old cowboy song, "Home, Home on the Range." That came to mind as I watched this doe and its two fawns this morning. 

 

 

So we wait for the next cool front...

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/8/first-migrants-of-fall-8-18-21 Thu, 19 Aug 2021 03:04:44 GMT
The Summer Day 8-7-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/8/the-summer-day-8-7-21 The Summer Day by Mary Oliver
 

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean -
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down -
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

 

I believe we are made to connect with nature and we are extremely fortunate when we come to appreciate that healthy connection. 

 

8-5-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird juvenile, perched8-5-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird juvenile, perched 8-5-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird juvenile8-5-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird juvenile

 

I try to spend some time outside every day. Often, I'll have a subject in mind to photograph and study and then that idea is quickly upended by the discovery of something new, right under my nose. Thursday, I had hoped to catch a young hummingbird at the Cardinal flower. It was a lovely, cool morning yet somehow, the bird knew the nectar was not available. It was going to some buttonbush and salvia blooms that were in more sun. So, I looked around.

 

8-5-21 Spined Assassin Bug on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)8-5-21 Spined Assassin Bug on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) 8-5-21 Spined Assassin Bug on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)8-5-21 Spined Assassin Bug on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)

 

A tiny critter moved on the Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) about 10 feet in front of me. At first I thought it was a spider, but no, it was a true bug that we had not seen before, a Spined Assassin Bug (Sinea diadema). Read more about this beneficial insect predator here: 

Spined Assassin Bug

 

  8-5-21 Monarch on Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)8-5-21 Monarch on Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) 8-5-21 Monarch laying eggs on Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)8-5-21 Monarch laying eggs on Marsh Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) 8-5-21 Monarch on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)8-5-21 Monarch on Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)

 

We were having lunch later that day in the gazebo when I saw a Monarch fly north out of the garden. Dan saw another on the Marsh Milkweed, and I went down to find that it was a female. The butterfly laid several eggs before going back to sipping nectar. This new generation will be the butterflies that complete the migration to Mexico.

 

8-521 Familiar Bluet on Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)8-521 Familiar Bluet on Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)

 

A Familiar Bluet damselfly was flitting around on the Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) in the breeze. It's no wonder that these insects inspire artists and moviemakers with their fantastical looks. 

 

8-2-21 Barred Owl8-2-21 Barred Owl 8-2-21 Barred Owl8-2-21 Barred Owl 8-2-21 Barred Owl8-2-21 Barred Owl

 

Earlier in the week, the Barred Owl was back in the Roughleaf Dogwood next to the deck. We had heard both of the owls the night before, just outside our window. It stayed until about 11:30 a.m. when a Blue Jay spied it and started making a racket. We have been hearing them more often but still not sure if they had any young.

 

 

Several of you have commented on how "cute" the fawns were in the last post. Well, my friends, we must face facts. "Cute" fawns do grow up and our neighborhood is now inundated with White-tailed Deer. There are no natural predators, i.e. wolves, to keep their numbers in check and that fosters disease in the resident herd. Last February, we saw firsthand a doe that was so sick it could no longer stand, flailing its legs in the air. It was not a pretty picture on a Sunday morning. The doe had to be put out of its misery by our local police officers. We thanked them, surely that was beyond the call of duty. No, as it turns out, they get calls like ours often.

This is the first year that we have seen these bucks with their large racks of antlers so early in the season. Half of the homes in the neighborhood have family dogs, so you can guess where the deer tend to concentrate. 

We have put up with some loss of vegetation, but decided it was time to restrict their movement in the Bubbler Area before the hormones kick in with the imminent breeding season. So, Dan partially fenced off the area. We'll see how this works. So far, so good.

 

8-3-21 Doe at fence8-3-21 Doe at fence 8-3-21 Fawn at fence8-3-21 Fawn at fence 8-3-21 11 point Buck at fence8-3-21 11 point Buck at fence

 

The birds have adapted, even using the fencing to perch on. Squirrels and raccoons can still get underneath because Dan positioned it high on the stakes. The buck decided to hunker down and wait to see if we'd take the fence down. No joy there.

 

8-4-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Fuchsia gartenmeister (annual)8-4-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Fuchsia gartenmeister (annual) 6-6-21 Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)6-6-21 Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens)

 

The hummers are enjoying all the blooms right now as they chase each other through the yard. My favorite annual is the Fuchsia Gartenmeister, which closely resembles the Coral Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens). The birds love it, too. The Fuchsia blooms from late spring til frost, producing flowers as the Coral Trumpet wanes. 

 

8-7-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)8-7-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird at Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)

 

This young hummingbird zoomed right in to sip at the native Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis).

 

8-7-21 Ironweed (Vernonia arkansana)8-7-21 Ironweed (Vernonia arkansana)
8-7-21 American Goldfinch on Purple Coneflower8-7-21 American Goldfinch on Purple Coneflower
 

Ironweed (Vernonia arkansana) is just blooming and it soon will attract butterflies and hummingbirds. American Goldfinches are finding Purple Coneflower seeds to eat.
 

8-5-21 Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)8-5-21 Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)


 

We've had a nice break from the heat, but there are still warm summer days left to enjoy.

Stay cool and stay well!

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/8/the-summer-day-8-7-21 Sat, 07 Aug 2021 19:23:45 GMT
Fall Warbler Quiz Answers 7-31-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/7/fall-warbler-quiz-answers-7-31-21 It's time for Answers!

 

It helps to look for field marks such as wing bars, eye-rings that are split or complete, leg color, etc. Females of each species are often duller in plumage. Best of luck and have fun!


10-25-19 Yellow-rumped Warbler10-25-19 Yellow-rumped Warbler

 

Yellow-rumped Warbler - yes, this one is a little tricky because this female is not showing off its named-for diagnostic field mark. 

 

10-6-19 Blackburnian Warbler  female10-6-19 Blackburnian Warbler female

 

Blackburnian Warbler - this bird is a first year female, it has very pale markings.

 

9-29-15 Tennessee Warblers9-29-15 Tennessee Warblers

 

Tennessee Warblers - these are first fall birds and they often come in small flocks together.

 

10-15-19 Orange-crowned Warbler10-15-19 Orange-crowned Warbler

 

Orange-crowned Warbler - a first fall female with dull, grayish, streaky plumage and whitish split eye-ring. 

 

The next series of photos are followed by labeled photos with the answers on them.

 

9-25-18 Tennessee, Chestnut-sided, and Bay-breasted Warblers9-25-18 Tennessee, Chestnut-sided, and Bay-breasted Warblers

Three Warbler Quiz!Three Warbler Quiz!

Three Warbler AnswersThree Warbler Answers

Six Warbler Quiz!Six Warbler Quiz! Six Warbler Quiz!  AnswersSix Warbler Quiz! Answers

 

Yes, that is a real photo! Migrating birds often travel in mixed flocks. Think about 'safety in numbers'. Hope you had some fun learning about these special tiny birds. They'll be showing up very soon. Now, for a few of the latest sightings here at Shady Oaks. 

 

7-19-21 Red-shouldered Hawk juvenile7-19-21 Red-shouldered Hawk juvenile

 

A young Red-shouldered Hawk was seen one day, hunting near the garden.

 

7-29-21 Northern Flicker female7-29-21 Northern Flicker female

7-29-21 Northern Flicker, juvenile male7-29-21 Northern Flicker, juvenile male 7-29-21 Northern Flicker, juvenile male7-29-21 Northern Flicker, juvenile male 7-29-21 Northern Flicker, juvenile male7-29-21 Northern Flicker, juvenile male 7-29-21 Northern Flicker juvenile male7-29-21 Northern Flicker juvenile male

 

The Northern Flickers had a successful brood of at least 3, two males and a female. The female is shown first after bathing, the two males follow. One of the males has a bit darker markings and perhaps it's the older nestling.

 

7-29-21 Northern Flicker after Roughleaf Dogwood berries7-29-21 Northern Flicker after Roughleaf Dogwood berries

 

That flicker has been after the Roughleaf Dogwood (Cornus drummondii) berries. It's the first time I've seen a woodpecker species go after them.

 

7-29-21 American Robin after Roughleaf Dogwood berries7-29-21 American Robin after Roughleaf Dogwood berries

 

The American Robins showed up the other day and they were all over them, too. There were at least 36 robins here, and I even saw two young Eastern Bluebirds near the pond, the first young birds of the year. I suspect the bluebird family wanted to get in on that action, but there were just too many robins around. In the following video, a robin is in the upper left corner working on the berries when two does and two fawns come in.

 

7-31-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird #17-31-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird #1 7-31-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird #27-31-21 Ruby-throated Hummingbird #2

 

Last but not least, the Ruby-throated Hummingbird numbers are starting to pick up. They are chasing each other at the feeders and through the garden, too. I watched a young bird at the Black-and-Blue Salvia, then it went on to the Pickerel, Indian Pinks, and Cardinalflower blooms. This cool front today may bring more in as well.

 

Enjoy the migrating birds!

 

 

 

 

 

]]>
hummerhaven@sbcglobal.net (Hummer Haven UnLtd.) https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/7/fall-warbler-quiz-answers-7-31-21 Sat, 31 Jul 2021 20:25:26 GMT
It's nearly time for Fall Warblers! 7-25-21 https://hummerhavenunltd.com/blog/2021/7/its-nearly-time-for-fall-warblers-7-25-21 Lesson #1:  Enjoy every bird!

Truth is, you'll hear more birds than you see,

and you'll see more birds than you can possibly photograph.

 

10-22-2000 Bubbler running!10-22-2000 Bubbler running! Varied Thrush documentation drawing 1/23/03 for 10th Missouri RecordVaried Thrush documentation drawing 1/23/03 for 10th Missouri Record

5-7-2-03 Blackburnian Warbler5-7-2-03 Blackburnian Warbler Chestnut-sided WarblerChestnut-sided Warbler

 

Birds began coming to the Bubbler within a few days after it was completed on 10-22-2000. After a visit by a Varied Thrush on a wintry day in 2003, the tenth record of this species in Missouri, it became time to put aside colored pencils and document birds with photographs. Dan helped me get set up with a digital camera. It was our introduction to the digital format of photography, with the camera connected to a spotting scope. It was cumbersome, it was slow and it was certainly challenging to focus on fidgety little birds! It did teach me patience, however, and ready or not, the birds kept on coming. Blackburnian and Chestnut-sided Warblers have always come down through the trees to enjoy the water feature. These images were some of the first taken with that digiscoping setup. 

 

Spring is always exciting because these neotropical migrants are in their vibrant breeding plumage. Fall is another story entirely. Some species look about the same, and some have molted into a duller version of themselves that almost looks like a totally different bird. 

 

Chestnut-sided Warbler in Spring and FallChestnut-sided Warbler in Spring and Fall

Magnolia Warbler in Spring and FallMagnolia Warbler in Spring and Fall

Bay-breasted Warbler in Spring and FallBay-breasted Warbler in Spring and Fall
 

These composite photos display the changes in their attire that are protective camouflage as they return to winter homes. It helps them blend ever so easily into the softer greens, yellows and rusty shades of autumn. This attribute also makes them more difficult to watch and identify as they move along the branches and grab caterpillars off the native plants. Add in the new first year birds of each species, and well, it's enough to make one's head spin!

 

10-4-13 Female Blackpoll Warbler documented as 3rd Missouri Fall record- note  orangey legs and feet10-4-13 Female Blackpoll Warbler documented as 3rd Missouri Fall record- note orangey legs and feet

 

Now, I have not seen every warbler species in every year. But over the 25 years we've been here, I have seen all 36 of the most likely warblers to be seen in our area. This is the third year that we've listed 29 species. Adding another species this fall would set a new record for our sanctuary. Yellow-throated, Cape May, Black-throated Blue, or Hooded Warblers might show up. A rarity is possible. The photo above shows a first year female Blackpoll Warbler that was here on 10-4-13, a third fall record for this species in Missouri. Doesn't it look similar to the Bay-breasted Warbler above it? Its orangey legs are key to separating it from the other species, and though only one photo was taken, it was enough documentation for that record. Most Blackpolls migrate much further to the east but it is likely that there are more in Missouri that get lost in the shuffle. Our yard does seem to be a "migrant trap" and is just very attractive to these tiny birds. 

 

For those who would like to take the Fall Warbler challenge, here are a few quiz photos. Answers will be posted next time!

 

You may also want to check out this updated gallery to study the birds and search for the answers. It will open in a new tab for comparison.

Fall Warbler Species at Shady Oaks

 

10-25-19 Yellow-rumped Warbler