Please, May I Have Some More????

We created a bird feeder area next to our front porch this spring, right outside of the large window that looks out from our front room.  Today is a dreary, overcast day and the feeder area is still covered with cardboard (to block out the briars that are fighting to grow back) and lacks mulch to cover the cardboard…but the feeders were abuzz with life.  Birds don’t care so much about garden aesthetics.  Apparently neither do mice so long as there is enough seed spilled on the ground (sigh…)  So much activity going on right now…

I am not at all proficient in bird identification.  In fact, it’s much like my butterfly ID pursuits… I take lots and lots of pictures and then spend lots of time online searching keywords like “brown bird, long tail, long beak, Northern Virginia”… lol -  The Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s “All About Birds” website is particularly helpful and then, when I’m still not sure, I crowdsource out to birder friends on facebook for confirmation.  It’s fun to be able to share what I’m learning with my kids and it feels good to look out the window and see so much life …

Today as I was watching the usual cast of finches and sparrows I saw a bunch of smaller gray birds which I didn’t initially ID… I snapped a few pictures thinking I’d look them up later and continued to wait for something more colorful.  Then I noticed these small gray birds acting strangely.  Whenever one of the house sparrow adults would get nearby, several of them would start to flutter their wings and turn anxiously towards it.

Ah HA!  They were fledglings!!

Now I feel a bit silly because, after all, there was a time in my life where I worked as the education director for a wildlife center… And while I never was required to identify more than a few backyard birds and this was almost 20 years ago…I’m clearly out of practice!!!  Yes – I usually can spot a fledgling…  In my defense, they could fly pretty well and their wings were no longer fluffy and ragged like those of younger fledglings.  These babies could even get up to the feeder themselves… however, if the adult would pass by they would begin fluttering and chirping for a little help.

A bit later I saw another bird with feathers that looked not quite smooth around the eyes… I suspected it was another fledgling as well.  Soon enough an adult House Finch came near and I was thrilled to snap some pictures of the adult feeding the fledgling some seed.  SO great!  Can’t wait to share these pics with the kids when they get home today!  Here is my favorite.


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[...] Yesterday I posted an image of a House Finch feeding a fledgling. [...]

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