Sunday, September 16, 2012

The End of a Birding Drought

Hi, guys! I finally went birding yesterday after a two-week break. It was absolutely lovely. The winter birds are starting to trickle in, which I am so super excited about. One of the birds that I found yesterday was a total surprise, and it made my day. As I was walking around a park, I suddenly heard this one, very familiar call emanating from a tree. I was sure that I must have misheard, because I hadn't seen this particular bird in two years. As I approached the tree, the mystery bird called again... and again...  And, finally, I saw the suspect: a Red-breasted Nuthatch. What a treat! These guys are honestly one of the cutest birds I have ever seen. Just watch this video: they're small, they're fluffy...  They're the whole package.

This is just a quick and dirty video of the one bird I saw yesterday. I'm hoping that the Nuthatches will stick around. They were all over the place two years ago - and, then, last winter, they didn't show up at all. With luck, this will be another Nuthatch winter. If it is, I'll be able to get even more footage of these lovely birds and do a proper Bird of the Week video later in the winter!

A tip on how to find a Nuthatch: If you hear this squeaky call in a tree and aren't sure where to look, just hold still and wait until you see a bird-like shape hop from one branch to another. Most of the times that I have seen Nuthatches, they have been in conifer trees. They really like to pry open pinecones and eat the seeds inside. They can be found in other trees, however, just like this Nuthatch. You can see that he/she was rummaging in the clumps of dead leaves and under the bark for bugs.

So, there you go! There are all kinds of fantastic birds out there to be found. I hope you have seen a bird or two - even if it was just a Mockingbird on a fence or a Scrub Jay in your yard. Cheers, and happy birding!

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