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Category Archives: Birds

The Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are nesting. They don’t spend much time at the feeder during the day. They arrive, get a good drink of nectar an take off. Toward evening I’ve been finding them hanging around the bushes close to the house.

This fellow had a bad itch. It spent quite some time scratching on both sides.

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I watched as a White-crowned Sparrow landed on my birdbath. It looked around for a while before deciding to take a bath. It really got in to bath time.

These Ruby-throated Hummingbirds were perched near my feeders making sure no one else could get to the feeder.

 

 

I watched as a Grey Catbird landed in the bird bath. There seemed to be some indecision as to weather it would take a bath or not. It finally dipped its head in to test the water before being fully committed.

 

So far this year I’ve had Baltimore and Orchard Orioles at my grape jelly feeder. There is also a pair of Grey Catbirds nesting near the feeder and they also like the jelly. The occasional Rose-breasted Grosbeaks also stop at the jelly feeder. The Orioles are not happy when other birds are feeding at “their” feeder.

Baltimore Orioles

Orchard Oriole

Grey Catbird

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

It has been a strange year. Normally the orioles, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks and Ruby-throated Hummingbirds all turn up at my feeders at the same time. This year the Rose-breasted Grosbeaks turned up and it wasn’t until a couple of weeks later that the Baltimore Orioles turned up. The next week the hummingbirds turned up. The males of the species always turn up first and withing a week the females turn up. The Baltimore Orioles far outnumber the Orchard Orioles.

Baltimore Oriole

Baltimore Oriole

Orchard Oriole

Orchard Oriole

It was raining our so I decided to stick around home and photograph the birds that were showing up to my feeders.

American Goldfinches

Baltimore Oriole

Chipping Sparrow

Northern Cardinal

A few weeks ago the first of the summer birds returned. More summer birds have returned. Normally these birds return withing a day or two of one another. This year the grosbeaks returned first. The hummingbirds followed a couple of weeks later and then the orioles a week after that. Right now there are eight orioles at my feeder.

Baltimore Oriole

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

This past week we drove through Crex Meadows on the way to Duluth, Minnesota. We saw quite a bit of wildlife and the DNR staging for a controlled burn. Unfortunately the burn didn’t happen. More photos from Crex Meadows can be found on my website.

 

Northern Harrier

Yellowlegs

Blue-winged Teal

Ring-necked Duck

Canada Geese

Pied-billed Grebes

Sandhill Cranes

Trumpeter Swan

 

After last weekends blizzard things finally started to warm up so my wife and I drove out to Hoffman Hills looking for birds. When we arrived we found the water in the prairie ponds was the highest we have seen it. It was flowing over the pond banks in several places. The first pond we approached was still mostly frozen. Several ducks flew as we approached the pond. I think they were Blue-winged Teals. We noticed a Hooded Merganser across the pond.

The Pussy Willows are starting to bloom although they were further ahead in the Gilbert Creek area.

As we approached the second pond we noticed a pair of Belted Kingfishers. I was able to get a shot of one through the trees before it flew. They seem to be very shy.

As we returned to the first pond all heck broke loose. Two Canada Gee

se were in the pond and a third flew in causing quite a ruckus. One of the initial pair chased the third goose into another small pond and then chased it away entirely. Then the two geese few to another area.

We started tracking the pair of Belted Kingfishers before they finally both flew away. About that time we heard some Sandhill Cranes fly into the area and another pair fly in from a different direction. They were all calling at once.

After things quieted down we noticed what appeared to be a third Belted Kingfisher sitting on a dead birch tree. It was fishing in a small pond of open water. We watched it fish for about an hour. It dove off his perch about a half dozen times three times hitting the water. Finally it caught something. Since the ice was just off the pond there didn’t seem to be a lot of things to eat.

It was a very productive visit.