Monday, February 15, 2016

Birds of a feather. . . . . . . . sometimes sleep together!

Yes, another bird post - but hopefully you, like me, are caring for the 
sweet birds in your corner of the world, especially if it's Winter and cold.

These photos were all taken over the weekend when, although very chilly, 
it was sunny and bright much of the time.
We'll probably be filing for bankruptcy if we continue buying so much bird seed!
Seriously though, we do love our garden birds and keeping them well fed and 
watered is something we enjoy so very much.
All photos were taken through the dining room window - a little help with editing
 from the always fabulous PicMonkey
Tufted Titmouse - male and female look the same.
Related to the Carolina chickadee but larger. Notorious for pulling hair from
sleeping dogs, cats and squirrels to line their nests!
Pine Siskin - small brown finch with pretty yellow touches, male and female alike.
Considered a Winter finch, arriving in large flocks some years but completely 
absent in others. This year we are seeing many.
Carolina chickadee - male and female look alike.
A very friendly tiny bird that can be tamed and hand-fed.
A pair have been raising their family in a nesting box on our porch for 
several years.
Female Purple finch and. . . . . . . 
. . . . . male Purple finch displaying his brilliant red feathers.
Usually seen only in Winter in the Carolinas when flocks leave their 
Northern homes to search for food - they came to the right place on
our front porch!
Pair of Mourning doves snuggled under the birdbath - the sweetest, quietest birds,
they mate for life which is seven to ten years! 
The big Male Northern flicker loves the suet feeder - although it's the only woodpecker
to regularly feed on the ground, preferring ants and beetles.
Carolina wren - male and female look the same.
Long-term mates remain all year in permanent territories in woodlands
or brushy yards. Male is known to sing up to 40 different songs!

This is my favorite little bird of all. Our very own pair of Carolina wrens are still sleeping together nightly in the totally dead Boston fern hanging basket!
They show up - 5:38 pm is their current time and we can just about set our clocks by them - always announcing their arrival for bed with much chatter, squawking, and hopping about on the front porch. For some reason Saturday evening seemed quite bright still so I grabbed a camera in hopes of a photo through the window. One had already popped into the basket, and here you see its mate who flew in a minute or so later - not sure, but would think this is Mr. Wren on the outside. Funny thing is, before it became really cold, one would go into the second basket but now they snuggle up together every night in the same little space they've now worn into a comfy hole. They never fly out if we just come and go in and out the front door, however if I walk across the porch behind them, one will fly out but return later. I hear them wake in the morning, currently around 7:00 am, chattering loudly before flying out to search for breakfast. They hang out the garden all day - front and back - seems this is their home as well as ours!
The photo is not very good but you get the idea.
I just love these perky birds whose family has been inhabiting our
 front porch for so many years.

Well the garden is looking much different this morning!  
Another ice storm started early and we now have a white coating frosting
  the landscape.
 The city is shut down, the airport is canceling flights, and driving is hazardous, 
but it should warm up later today and by tomorrow temperatures are expected to be
 back around 60F.
Such a crazy Winter here in North Carolina!

Here's to a fine week in your corner of the world.


  1. The Tufted Titmouse is so adorable. I'll have to watch for them. Your photos are gorgeous, Mary. Stay warm, Deb

  2. What wonderful photographs Mary and what a variety of birds that visit your garden. We have quite a few and are looking after them through the Winter.
    Have a lovely week Mary. XXXX

  3. So sweet! I love the bird posts!!

  4. Such beautiful and sweet looking birds you have in your garden Mary, and so different from the ones that we have.

    Thank you for your kind words on my blog. Ha, ha, they made me blush. So much praise! I can tell you I threw away about fifty photo's I looked horrible on.

    Do go and see The Danish girl. I think it's a gem. It's a beautiful love story, that really moved me. Eddie Redmayne is a very convincing Lilli Elbe and his wife Gerda, Alicia Vikander, plays her role beautifully too. The film is not shocking at all. The director makes you understand how difficult the journey from man to woman is for Lilli and Gerda. Beautiful sets and costumes as well! I read some reviews that were less positive, but I think it's worth a visit to the cinema.

    About our sweet friends in Budapest. I think they may come and stay this summer. Looking forward to it very much!

    Have a lovely week!

    Madelief x

  5. Mary, your little birds appreciate you and your food so very much. And I always enjoy your bird posts/photos along with ALL of your other posts. I, too, have spent an inordinate amount on bird seed this year! I fear my husband is keeping a mental note of my purchases!! However, he seems to enjoy watching the birds almost as much as I do. I am wondering if your purple finch is not a house finch? You might check your bird guide on that one. We have lots of house finches and I have looked for a purple finch among them for years, but I don't believe we have had one here. We have 5 or so inches of snow and sleet/freezing rain is forecast for later today and tonight.
    Thanks again for your wonderful blog.
    Farm Gal in SW VA

    1. Lovely as always to read your kind comment dear, thanks. I did think at first they were the usual House finches, but because the male is a much deeper red and has the color also on his rump, and because of info/description in my Birds of the Carolinas book, I'm certain they are Purple finches. This male is much different from the usual male finches that come to our feeders, so much brighter than the House finch - in the book they state "raspberry-red head" and this one certainly has that, and also say that they are not 'purple' in color - the Latin name purpureus actually means crimson - and he certainly is that bright! The female has the white eyebrow of the Purple finch, and they did seem to be a pair coming to the porch rail together. Hubby has been putting seed there during the bad weather so we can see them close-up!
      Sorry your weather is still so 'wintry' - you must be getting our frozen stuff which I noticed was heading your way. On top of the snow it will be very slick - do take care.
      Mary -

    2. Thanks for your reply. So glad it is the purple finch then. I will keep watching among my finches and maybe I will find one someday. Birds are a joy.
      Icing is to begin here soon unfortunately.

  6. Dear Mary - what a wonderful collection of birds you have to entertain you during this strange weather that the world seems to be experiencing - we have a gorgeous day, such as today, and then tomorrow who knows what will arrive - rain I expect. Our bird seed and nut bill stuns me too, and I am thinking of buying in bulks from a warehouse to try cut the cost down.

  7. Always so interesting to see your wonderful bird photos. You have a much greater variety than we see, in our garden. I'm sure we spend more on food for the birds, than we do on our food ( a little over exaggerated, but you know what I mean, a lot ) I could sit and watch the birds all day. It's amazing how their time for going to roost is the same time every evening.

  8. Oh wow yall are sure getting some real winter weather! I enjoy your bird pictures.. You get some great ones! We like watching birds too

  9. I have heard that it is a very expensive hobby...feeding birds. We are so blessed to have neighbors who feed the birds. That way we get to enjoy them, too. I enjoyed the Carolina Wren story! Better than alarm clocks.

  10. What gorgeous bird pics. Picmonkey? You're so talented. I wouldn't know where to start.

  11. Stunning - there is no other word. The colors are amazing - and so clear. I love how many different birds you have attracted.

  12. You have certainly had a strange and wild winter, Mary. We are just splashing through rain every single day.
    Your bird photos are beautiful. I think I'll have to investigate Pic Monkey.

  13. Beautiful bird photos, as always! Love hearing about the Titmouse -- stealing fur from animals to make a cozy home. Wouldn't you in this crazy weather we've been having?! They are just too cute. Glad the ice has melted away now after the downpour last night!

  14. I for one never tire of seeing or watching or hearing about sweet birds. You certainly have a big variety visiting. And I love that one little couple have taken up residence. It's so interesting to learn about their habits. Hope things warmed up. Best wishes, Tammy

  15. Your bird photos always delight me. We have the flickers and mourning doves, but not sure if we get any others. How I love seeing them at our feeders. Yes, I can't even imagine how much we spend on bird seed, but buy it in 25 pound bags.

  16. I'm always happy to see your incredible bird photos as not only are they great shots, but you have such an immense variety of them. Some of them I've never even heard of, like the Pine Siskin! OH yes, I'm with you, those Carolina Wrens are adorable! Again, ones I've never seen before here.

    Way back in college days, we used to have a pair of Mourning doves in the back of our rental's yard. They would come year after year. WE so loved them. Utterly romantic. Sigghh...

    Speaking of crazy weather: we had gorgeous 70F weather then by about 4:30pm the clouds moved in adn now it is 80mph winds. I love that about Colorado though--the rapidly changing and hard to predict weather. It's never dull here...well, except for the end of summer when it is just one stifling hot day after another but at least, as you know, Mary, it's dry.


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