Saturday, February 14, 2009

Great Backyard Bird Count

I had too many other things going on yesterday to start my Great Backyard Bird Count, but today Mr. Johnson had to go into work for a few hours, so I made good use of that time by knitting on my Big Lena Sveater and watching birds from the dining room window. It was a beautiful morning, and I went out early and filled all the feeders with food and treats to optimize my birdwatching opportunities, and the birds didn't disappoint me! Here are some pictures from today that I hope you enjoy (don't forget, you can click on any of the pictures to enlarge them).

Mrs. Hairy Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

Red-Bellied Woodpecker

Crow (with a couple chunks of bread)

" didn't leave me any!!"

In addition to goldfinches, I also saw (and recorded) 1 Common Redpoll and 1 Pine Siskin

Dark-Eyed Junco

"Penny, wake up!! You're missing all the birdies!"

Bluejays were the first ones here this morning.

Red Rules! Cardinal and House Finch sharing the birdfeeder

Remember those giant mealworms? Chickadee loves 'em!

I took Sophie out for a walk to the far end of the yard, hoping to spot some other birds or maybe a Red-Tailed Hawk. Instead Sophie found this feral cat that's been hanging around the backyard. I let Sophie terrorize this cat for a few minutes and it finally took off running to the nether regions of the "back 40." I hope this cat learned a lesson and thinks twice about coming back!

Enjoy the rest of the weekend!


Mama Pea said...

Knitting and bird watching, huh? You couldn't have gotten much knitting done with all those great bird pictures you took! Your snow has really gone down. We don't have anything close to a bare patch yet.

dAwN said...

Great Birdie activity on your count..I decided to do the bird count here in Florida last we did a half hour tonight and will do some more tomorrow...
by the way..I thought of you when someone was talking about a great book while i was at the bookstore..
and being a knitter most likely you have read it before..
It is called Friday night knitting club...and the lady raved about it..
anyway..happy counting

Anonymous said...

What great pictures for the bird count. How many umpteen sparrows did you count? Did you have any unusual birds today. The Coopers Hawk was here a couple times today.
Sophie sure has that cat all fluffed up and ready to spring into action, LOL.


Kallen305 said...

You had a great day for different bird species. I had to LOL at the crow photo with the bread. Talk about a full mouth!!

Love the blue jay photo when it is flying away from the feeder.

Cats are smart little creatures and once they know a dog is in the yard, they are usually smart enough to go elsewhere. Good luck with that.

Gaelyn said...

Looks like a good day for birding. And hopefully you got some knitting done also.

mon@rch said...

My cat takes cat naps also between bird watching! Bravo

Mel said...

Hola Ruthie,
I looove your visitors!! Your backyard is so full of life! I think they know that the nice lady who feeds them loves them very much.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I hope you enjoy the rest of the weekend too. Happy Valentines Day.

Kelly said...

...a redpoll and a siskin...lucky you!! I've almost given up hope on those two ever showing up at my feeders. Like that peanut feeder!

mon@rch said...

So many great birds and love the winter finches!

Red said...

Your Hairy Woodpecker pic is wonderful! LOL @ Sophie... hope that cat does think twice. We have a neighborhood cat who can't be feral who is a pretty clever hunter, but hopefully unsuccessful.

Happy Valentines Day Ruthie!

Red said...

I almost forgot... Tango had a blast birdwatching too. Got one of her watching something other than a chickadee in the feeder though :) I think it was a MoDo below.

Jayne said...

What a great variety... maybe I should take up knitting? Is that the secret? :c) LOL at Penny snoozing! Uh, I'll let you borrow around 100 Pine Siskins?

RuthieJ said...

Hi MamaPea,
I finally hung the camera around my neck so I didn't have to keep reaching for it! Actually most of the photos were taken over a 6-hour time period, so I did get quite a bit of solid-color knitting done.

Hi Dawn,
Hope you had a fun day of birding.
Friday Night Knitting Club -- yeah, I enjoyed that book quite alot. I wish I had more friends to knit with.

Hi Mom,
No unusual birds and less than the usual number of sparrows and juncos now that most of the snow is gone.

Hi Kallen,
It certainly was a great day for birding. I enjoy watching the antics of the crows with their "snacks."

Hi Gaelyn,
I've made a lot of progress on my sweater--I'm into the colorwork on the yoke.....hopefully I'll have it finished by the end of this week.

Hi Mon@rch,
if your cat is like Penny, she probably can't resist a sunny spot.

Thanks Mel, I'm not sure who's benefitting more--me or the birds!

Thanks Lisa.

Hi Kelly,
It didn't take the bluejays long to figure out how to use that peanut feeder, and it makes them work a little bit harder to get their peanuts. Woodpeckers can use it too.

Thanks Red. I've seen that cat right outside the door at night too--I think it was hunting voles or something. It's a pretty cat and I can't figure out why people let their animals just run loose like that. I suppose it's one someone just dumped out in the country.

Hi Jayne,
Send those siskins north!! I have plenty of nyjer seed.
And yes, I think everyone should take up knitting ;-)

modernfigurative said...

Amazing photos! What a view!! I will be back to look for more!! :)
I didn't realize you could do the bird count in periods during the day, I thought it was an all day thing.

Marsha said...

What a beautiful variety for your bird count! Isn't it great to see the ground again after a winter of snow, of course we know that we will get more but it gives me spring fever. We actually saw bald eagles nesting already this weekend and that really made me wonder if spring will arrive early this year.

Did you leave out a note with directions to my house for the cardinals yet? ;-)

Thinking of you as you finish the last weeks of work. I hope you have some more leads on work soon and until you do that you enjoy your time at home.

Wisconsin Birder said...

Hi Ruthie, I'm a new reader. Your GBBC list looks a lot like mine in northern Wisc. I was also watching and knitting but working on much simpler little hats. Your Lena sveater looks fabulous!

Larry said...

I'm not patient enough to count birds in my back yard-I'd rather hike some where- but I'm glad other people are getting involved.

Leedra said...

It looks like you had a good day on the bird count day.

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