Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Usual

I think I'll start boldfacing bird names, that way non-birders can skip over the tedious bird chatter and birders can skip the whole thing when they see that once again no real rarities are mentioned.

This morning I looked out the kitchen window to see a pair of House Finches at the hummingbird feeder. House Finches used to be southwestern birds, but underwent a major range expansion in the past century and are now found across much of North America. They are still most abundant in the southwest, and here in Southeast Texas are definitely uncommon - in fact the occasional sightings in my yard are the only ones I've had in this corner of the state. Maybe I just don't get out enough.

Afterward I took a little walk around the yard, which turned out to be a target rich environment. Checking the live oak by the kitchen I found a female Archilochus hummingbird (probably Ruby-throated), an Orange-crowned Warbler, and a pair of Blue-headed Vireos. A Pine Warbler was visiting the seed feeders. Most of the regulars were present - Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Carolina Wren, Carolina Chickadee, Yellow-rumped Warbler, etc. Watched a big kettle of Black Vultures form over the pond. There were about 20, possibly the largest grouping I've ever seen here.

We've had a few weak cold fronts lately, and I'm hoping the change in climate will deliver something new. A Brown Creeper or Red-breasted Nuthatch would be nice.


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