Nice pics, Hack...you've been busy! So how do you like the new camera, other than needing to get used to different settings? I like the wispy hairdo...kind of the "bed-head" look.
Hi DMersh! Welcome to the Bird Watching forum and thanks for the super pics of the Osprey. Even if you're not normally a bird watcher, you're always welcome here anytime you feel like stopping by. There are lots of friendly folks that visit here who will tell you the same thing.
Big ditto to what nutsaboutnature said, DMerch, you're always welcome here. I like your shot of the osprey looking back over its shoulder, thanks for sharing.
Yep, nuts, the 7D is more different from the 40D than I thought, but I'm getting there. Today, I put the new 70-300 L lens on it and shot the following two pics "free hand" - no tripod - that IS (image stabilizing) feature of the lens is NICE. The feeders are about 90 ft away from me. I tweaked the pics with Photoshop Elements.
DMersh wrote:Not a birdwatcher myself but I saw a young Osprey at the visitor centre, Loch of Lowes near Dunkeld, Scotland and managed to take a few pictures through one of the spotting scopes in the hide
Great start to the new thread, Chilly. That's a cute woodpecker.
Hack,I'm glad you're enjoying the 7D and the new lens.
Lovely shots everyone. I've been going to the local pool early morning and each day there are Pacific Black Ducks in or around the pools. This was this morning - the mist is real. It had just stopped raining and the pool is warmed. Kookaburras, Australian Magpies, Red Wattlebirds, Willie Wagtails and Magpie Larks also seem to enjoy the facility. As I was leaving, another duck was asleep in the diving pool.
Thanks chillybean for the new thread. Your pic of the immature RHWP made me think of the new nest that was drilled by my Redhead this spring, in a large pine by my house. Unfortunately, the pine has to be felled because the circumfrance of the tree was cut some years ago and is a hazard. I was concerned that I had not seen any immature RHWPs, and worried that there may be young in the nest. I downloaded my pictures tonight and found a pic from earlier this year of an immature RHWP. I had forgotten! I also had a new visitor this year, a Loggerhead Shrike. A first for me.
I sure wish I could see more Osprey, DMerch, so thank you for the pictures, and welcome. :)
Hack, I never have seen a Cardinal on a feeder perch before and that really amazes me with your Woodpecker, gazegirl. And congrats on the life bird, we've only seen the Northern Shrikes here. :) I like your birds, Margaret. It is interesting to see how the wild birds take to human structures.
This was taken last month, but finally got it cropped for web use. It amazes me how often the Dickcissels will let you get fairly close. They are quiet for the most part now. I am guessing with the warm spring we had many birds are done a little earlier. ??
nutsaboutnature - Nice pics. I looked and can't figure it out - how do you tell a male White-breasted Nuthatch from a female White-breasted Nuthatch? Looks like your hubby did a good job with the up-side-side suet feeder.
hey nanny, the bath on the ground. Is that the top of a regular pedistal type, or something made for the ground. Ilike to try it, but am afraid there are too many neighborhood cats around here. Lovely blue bird, too.
Chillybean, that sure is a sweet looking juvy R-h. WP.
Nanny, love that birdbath! Apparently all the birds do, too.
Thanks Chillybean! Cute shot of the juvie WP! Are Mom and Dad still watching over it?
Thanks, Hack...My husband is very creative. Those feeders are pretty old so he'll probably make new ones eventually. Now that most of the Blackbirds and Starlings are gone, I'll most likely put out at least one of the regular suet cages. They're easier for some of the other birds.
Hack, I could be wrong on the female Nuthatch, but it looked lighter to me. The males have darker heads and necks than the females. I'm sure if Resin stops by he'll be able to tell us for sure.
Yep, probably right on the nuthatches; black capped in males, dark grey capped in females. From what I've read, there is apparently a little overlap so it's difficult to be 100% certain, but it likely is male on the left and female on the right, above.
#1 - I think this may be an older juvy male Cardinal.
#2 - Here's a pretty female Cardinal
#3 - Lots of Carolina Chickadees here.
#4 - The female Downy Wp returned. As you can see, I leave the suet in the pack. That female Wp, pecked and pecked and then shifted around to the front. That's why I leave the pack on - to make the Wp present itself better.
#5 - Caught two Tufted titmice feeding on different feeders - at the same time. They really like the whole peanuts
Nutsaboutnature, We see the Red-headedparents now and again, but not as much, but the little guy still hangs out a lot. I am begging him to stay for the winter.
Hack, two Titmice!! Cool. The only titmouse we have at our place is a drawing one of the children made for me. We have to go to the Des Moines area to see those birds.
1. Two Dickcissels across the road from our house.
2. Dad Baltimore and one of his young. We were thrilled to see this from our front window. Made me glad I didn't pull those weeds, whatever they were. The two found good things to eat.
3. And these two were our last Barn Swallows to leave the nest. Ah, I still miss those "guys". But when I was outside this week, I wonder if some of that family remembered us. Two were perched on our house near the porch and just chattered away. (Oh I love that chatter!!) They had no apparent fear of me. I said, "Hello" to them and they didn't fly off like other birds I greet. :)
Hack, the pictures I see in the field guides of the Brown-headed Nuthatch seem to only show one bird (not both a male and female) so I'm inclined to think they look the same.
Cute pics! I like all of them. To me the female Cardinals look like they're wearing brightly-colored lipstick...very fitting for a lovely girl. Looks like those Titmice love the peanuts.
Chillybean, in our area the Red-heads only stick around for the Summer, but just a little further South they stay all year so I guess it's possible some might stay if they can find food. In the Winter, our three varieties are constantly at the suet and sunflower seed feeders. As the weather gets cooler I put up more suet feeders so they don't have to wait in line.
Very cute photos! Many years ago when I was doing a little small-scale rehab on a voluntary basis I raised a baby Cliff Swallow and Bullocks Oriole together...two years in a row...what a coincidence! It was amazing...they became like siblings and were inseparable.
Hack, Swallows build nests out of mud and they attach them to walls, under bridges, etc.
Whoa... I have to get off the computer quick!! We're about to have a storm and are having gray-outs. So I don't have time to check for typos!!
Long story made short: The Barn Swallows built the mud nest on porch, so we had a front seat view, well at day 12 after hatching, two babies fell out of the nest. Don't laugh... we put pillows under the nest to soften falls. We've heard when baby Barn Swallows startle they can fall out and with our sporadic "traffic" roaring by, we wanted to have something for them.
Well, day 13 one fell out too many times to count, so my husband built this platform. One of the pictures in this album shows the whole thing. It was done so if there was another accident, there'd be a landing close to the nest and we were so hoping the parents would still feed whichever one was in the platform. Which they did. https://picasaweb.google.com/108468547679021572625/BarnSwallowFamily2012
Actually, we got to thinking about the falls. The day we put this up we started getting little mites in the house and after a bit of research and talking to a "studier of bugs" (Cannot remember their official name) I am wondering if the poor swallow/s were trying to get away from the mites, or a bite in the wrong spot made them jump. We ended up losing one swallow baby in spite of our efforts. But four others left the nest and are fine as far as we know.
Nutsaboutnature, That is wonderful that you volunteered your time like that. I read a story about a woman who rehabbed songbirds and raptors. If she ever had to go anywhere, the baby birds went with her to be fed every twenty minutes. She had children who helped a lot with that, too. I think that would be a good experience for all of us, but the government paper work sounds maddening.
Looking at the range map, we are just on the border of the Red-headed's year-round range, but I talked to someone further northwest than I and he said depending on the year, even he can get them to stay the winter.
Did your storm bring rain? We had a doozy come through this morning and I was thrilled with every drop of rain it brought. It rained about an hour or so. I went to look at the rain gauge and little hands made off with it again... We bought another and have a new rule about touching the rain gauge. "Don't do it!" I think they used it when we let them play in the sprinkler the other day.
Chillybean, yes, baby birds went with me everywhere! Older birds recovering from injuries could eat on their own. I only dealt with a few mammals, mostly birds, due to my space limitations.
It's great that most of the baby Barn Swallows made it. I remember you told the story of the one that kept falling out of the nest in another thread...poor little thing, but you guys sure tried everything you could to keep it safe.
We did get some rain and based on an empty flower pot tray that is now full, I would say it was probably about a half-inch. I guess it really stormed southwest of us (hail, too). We didn't get as much as I hoped for, but enough to help since we're on water restrictions. Our rainbarrel is now overflowing, but it was nearly full before the rain...I've been using it sparingly. Had I known with certainty we'd get rain, I would have used more of it up.
Just stopping by to say, "Hello". I haven't been taking very many photos recently. Too busy and too hot. Bird activity is at a minimum. I did get my Nikon D800 but haven't spent a lot of time getting familiar with it. I immediately ran into a problem in that my Photoshop Elements 8 and Lightroom 3 software would not open a RAW image. I thought a RAW image was a RAW image but such is not the case. So, I need to buy upgraded versions.
I did play around a little with Hummingbirds. These photos were taken at 1/8000's of a second with a 500mm lens. Lighting was not too good for that speed so I had to lighten the photos quite a bit. I was told that to get good action photos of Hummingbirds one needs additional lighting like that provided with a "Better Beamer". A colorful male or two would also help the image but it seems most of them are young and/or females.
This is about the time the males begin to migrate south so you might not see too many other than those migrating down from Canada and immature males. We're still seeing some local males, but we haven't had as many Hummers this year, male or female. The weather has been so unusually hot...maybe some of them just continued north? It's possible we will all start seeing more Hummers as the weather cools a bit. One can only hope...
Nice photos Hack. By the way, I'm not worried about the D800 ... I'm worried about me !
DMersh, the original photo is 7360 x 4912. The uploaded files are approximately 1000 x 600.
Our Osprey will soon be heading toward South America so I thought I might as well photograph a few before they leave. When we are babysitting our grandchildren at their house, I am in walking distance to an Osprey nest. Here are a few photos from Friday. I have to work somewhat on the ISO. I shot these using shutter priority at 1/2500 sec. and an ISO of 1800 but that combination gave me an aperture reading of f/22. I should have been using a much lower ISO.
Hack - Love the pics...especially the two Hummer shots! Is your new feeder one of those that collapses flat when you're not using it? Nice. I guess you got your order. How do you like the other items?
Chillybean - Have you gotten your order yet from FF?
Linth - Those Osprey pics are absolutely AMAZING!!
I saw a baby Goldfinch this morning just outside my bedroom window. It was eating seed from some Monarda flowers that I had planned to deadhead (guess I'll leave them). I most often see the Goldfinches on my Echinacea (coneflowers), one of their favorites. I leave lots of dried flowers of all types at the end of the season for the birds, but while plants are still blooming I try to deadhead so they'll make more blooms. It's a tradeoff that I try to balance. Anyway, I wasn't able to get a good shot through both the window and the screen.
Yes! I did. It arrived Saturday. The nesting material looks the same as what you posted. Our rain barrels are filled up again. We were empty. My husband is looking to get some that are on clearance at Menards- something to put by the backdoor where we don't have any yet.
I planted coneflowers, cardinal flowers and black-eyed susans. The coneflowers didn't make it, but the others are doing well. Are there any birds who eat black-eyed susans?
Linth, your photos are amazing!
Hack, do you feed Jays? Have you ever seen them go to a feeder like your new one? Our woodpeckers and nuthatch will go to the mesh type feeders, but the Jays (and Thrashers) only go to the platform. It's been nuts (haha) with the grackles and starlings showing up again, but I don't know what to do to keep them away.
This is an older picture taken by my little photographer. It's not great, but he's always thought this one hysterical. The Dove comes in for a landing and the Goldfinch pops off.
Chillybean - Goldfinches will eat the seed from Black-eyed Susans. We have some right next to Coneflowers. They're particularly fond of the Coneflowers, but will eat the BE Susans as well and, in fact, I just saw a female eating the seeds a little while ago.
We have lots of Blue Jays. They spend much of the time eating whole corn and sunflower seeds off the ground, but they do come to most types of our feeders, including the mesh ones. They also come to drink from the birdbaths.
Our Red-winged and other Blackbirds and Starlings are mostly gone, now except for an occasional visit. They'll start coming back again as it gets closer to Autumn. During Spring and Summer we always have one feeder with Safflower seed which the Blackbirds don't eat (the shell is too hard). It's always either a tray-type feeder or a tube or mesh-type with a tray so the Cardinals and Doves can use it as well as the smaller birds.
nutsaboutnature. Yes on both questions. The new feeder does in fact fold up flat, I guess about an inch thick. My little feeders keep me going - they run out pretty fast. The new feeder should last for a while, before I have to refill it. AND I did get the bedding material, w/ hanger cage, I just haven't out it out yet. Did you say it could be put out now, or should I wait for spring.
Chillybean, except the platform feeder, it's rare that I see a Jay on my other types of feeders. When I put out a few shelled peanuts (or even unshelled peanuts) on the platform feeder a jay will land for a moment, get it's morsel and take off for a tree branch. Most of the time my jays fly from tree to ground and back up to the tree. It is not unusual to see them getting the spillage that is on the ground under my feeders. Now, the Brown Thrashers, hop around on the ground, kicking up leaves left and right. They usually stay near the shrubbery's edge, but now and then one will venture out into the yard, and get some spillage, too.
Hack - Yes, definitely put at least a little out now. Goldfinches are late nesters...late Summer to early Autumn (they're nesting now). I see the Goldfinches using the nesting fluff every day...it's so cute to watch the way they pull it out and fly off with a beak-full!
If it were me, I'd put some of it in a suet cage near where they eat and save the large holder till next Spring so it's nice and fresh when there are lots of birds using it. Then next year you can determine if you want to leave the large holder up longer.
1- I caught this Mockingbird as it was about to fly away. Never did get another shot of it.
2 and 3 are of a Downy Wp. I leave the suet in the container and then put it in the holder. I do that so the wp will not stay on the backside, where I can't see it. In #2 this poor wp, pecked, and pecked and pecked at the plastic case before (#3) finally moving around to the front.
Well, it's rainy and overcast here in Dixie. Took a few pics, thought I post 'em.
1- Here's a female House Finch, looks like she's been in a wind storm.
2 and 3- I changed the sugar water in the hummer feeder and I guess this male Ruby-throated Hummer enjoyed the cool drink. He stayed a lot longer than usual. Wish the sun had been out to see the red throat.
4- Now, here's something I don't see very often - Tufted Titmice on the plateform feeder. I guess they haven't found, or gotten used, to the new feeder, yet. In fact, the only bird I've seen on the new feeder, so far, is a Brown-headed Nuthatch. I'm looking forward to the return on the Goldfinches.
Hack - Looks like you're getting more comfortable with the new camera. I like all the pics, but the two of the Hummer with his wings flapping are special!
Don't be too surprised if it takes a while for the birds to get used to the new feeder. Birds are creatures of habit and sometimes even a slight change can throw them off for a bit. The Nuthatches and Chicadees tend to be more daring (and also more tame). It's not uncommon for them to be the first birds you'll see at a new feeder.
Our Goldfinches are everywhere right now so here are a couple more pics. The 2nd one isn't very good, but I liked their poses. The Hummer female was taken through a double pane window. Unfortunately the sun kind of blew out the highlights.
I have been lurking on and off. You have all posted some nice assortment of birds and some great tips, and great pics.
Soon we will be seeing more migrating birds, and I am looking forward for some unusual ones. Last year I got the Northern Parula Warbler and the Eastern Towhee as lifer, In spring it was the Indigo Bunting. I wonder which one I'll be getting this Fall???? :)
One I usually see mostly in Spring, brought its fledge to the yard this week. Only for one day. It's the Evening Grosbeak! It was a nice surprise. Not the best of pic, I was sitting under the tree and leaves got in the way.
Second is one of the fledge
Third is the Black-capped Chickadee
Fourth I have a lot of Purple finches
Song Sparrow for the last one.
Yep, nutsaboutnature, I kind'a figured it would take them a little while to start using the new feeder. Today, I observed a male house finch on the new feeder. Oh, and I really liked the pic of the hummer.
Hi, burn, nice pics. Seeing your shot of the purple finch made me wonder when I'll be seeing some. I need to look back in my folders and see when my last year pics were taken. Your Black-capped dees look just like my Carolina dees.
1) Another double-pane window shot of a female Hummer (I have to clean my windows!).
2) and 3) The next two were much too far away for decent shots, but since Chillybean had asked if any birds eat the seeds from Black-eyed susans, I thought I'd go ahead and post these. The Goldfinches almost blend right in with the blooms!
Hack, our Robins have long not been able to get worms in our dry weather, but they're finding something.
Nutsaboutnature... You don't need to clean your windows.. I've read that's a great way to keep birds from crashing into them, since they cannot see the reflection of what's behind them. I have bird tape up, but appreciate any excuse to not clean my windows. I do need to do the yearly clean on the front window before our turn for church since there's mud and such from when the swallows nested here.
My son's photos are getting shared more than mine. He took a great one yesterday of what we believe an Eastern Phoebe on the clothes line. It looks to have a bit of facial hair. :)
Hi all, haven't been around much, it's so nice to know there are many pics. to enjoy in our thread here. The Duck is too funny sharing the pool there Margaret. Thank you Chillybean for the new thread, and your young son is doing such good job! Awww, I've missed my Goldfinches, please send some my way please. For this past week, I've this female Summer Tanager visiting the suet. There has been days that I didn't hang the suet quick enough. She would come by and pecked at the cage as if saying "Suet please". lol. Duc, love your many variety of birds as always. Hack and Nutaboutnature, I love your discussion and many photos.
I like seeing your Thrasher and Wren, I haven't seen either of them here. I doubt I'd get a Wren, but might someday see a Thrasher in this area.
Thanks Nuts. Love the shot of your Hummer! I think your little goldfinch might have been munching on bugs, cause the flowers are to pretty to be setting seeds right now. But they will eat the seeds of the flowers too. I've seen them on mine. I've also seen them feasting on aphids, on my Ninebark. Great little helpers!!!
Chilly what a superb shot, you son took of the Pheobe.
Congrat on the Summer Tanager, Lily.
This is from a couple of days ago.
An Handsome male Evening Grosbeak, and a juvie Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.
Lily, that Summer Tanager is a beauty and I see you got a bonus Red-bellied Woodpecker in the pic!
Ooh, burn, that Evening Grosbeak really is a handsome guy and the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker is lovely, as well, especially on that very pretty tree branch!
You're right about the Goldfinches being helpful. We have tons of them right now and I love it. They sing constantly. This year they've also taken a liking to the seed of my Monarda so I've decided to leave the dried blooms standing. We're starting to see more Hummers and it's wonderful. We had much fewer than normal for most of the Summer.
Chillybean, I don't have much problem with birds flying into my windows. We have blinds and open the slats for a nice view, but rarely open the entire blinds. I open them entirely in the kitchen, but it's never caused any problems.
Hack - My Black-eyed Susans are in a long, narrow raised bed that my husband built along our neighbor's fence. They don't cover a very large area. They're now about 3-1/2 ft X 4-1/2 ft, but I only started with two scrawny plants about 5 years ago...they really spread. The first Spring they were planted they didn't get real big, but the next year they really "popped". I will probably divide them this year and find another place for some. I've also been told that you can grab a flower head and "crush" the seeds wherever you want to grow more. The gardener that told me this said the seeds are very "potent" and will grow quickly.
Most of my yard is various degrees of shade. I have one small bed in full-sun at the back of the house. The Black-eyed Susans have always been in a shady area with some occasional sun and it hasn't seemed to make a difference. Last year one of our neighbor's large trees split after a storm (landed on our garden shed, but that's another story). Now that bed has more sun. I picked a variety that only gets about 2 ft tall...it might be 'Goldsturm'.
1- I saw this Canada Goose (and bunches of other C Geese) at the local pond / picnic area (called Cooper Creek Park). They are not tame, but they are very tolerant of humans. Because of the leash law, dogs don't harass them - little kids are another matter, lol - but the Geese can take care of themselves.
2- One of my regulars - a Cardinal, a male in this case. Still have a few juvies, with their gray beaks.
3- Another common bird as the house - a male House Finch.
4- I saw this Tufted Titmouse in the back, where I hung some new feeders.
5- I still have Ruby-throated Hummers around. This may be a juvy male, not sure - I think I see some red developing on its throat. It was raining, you can see one of the drops behind the little fellar.
I'm way behind again, but sure enjoying going back through all these great pictures-great job everyone!
This mourning dove was sitting on the railing and looking at me through the window so I took its photo.
I just have a few lesser goldfinches that are checking out my garden for seeds.
My young black-headed grosbeaks are starting to get more coloring.
The anna's hummingbirds continue to love the fountains.
Great photos everyone! I do enjoy looking at them. Here is one of our baby crows with mom. There are nine crows now, and the babies are beginning to trust my voice and come to the patio to get peanuts.
nutsaboutnature and anyone else interested in Black-eyed Susans.
I saw some Blacked-eyed Susans in the curbside flower bed of a restaurant here in Columbus. Many of them were missing the petals, only had the black centers. The restaurant said I could cut some. I saw the following video on youtube and am going to use her method to get me some seeds out of those black centers. All I need are the centers, not the pretty flowers.
Like your Crow photo, Countrymom! Crows are very intelligent. I've read some amazing stories of things they've done.
Hack, It's great that you were able to get some seed heads from Black-eyed Susans. Each one has tons of seeds. Thanks for sharing the link to the youtube video. That looks like an easy way to separate the seeds. The gardener that first told me about planting the seeds said all he does it crush the dried ones in his hand to release the seeds so I guess you can see which works better for you.
I loved watching the youtube videos of the Goldfinches...Thank You! Yes, they really do go at the seed heads just like that. It's great fun to watch. They particularly like coneflowers, but they'll eat the seeds from all sorts of flowers so I tend to leave a lot of them standing.
Sorry, duc...I was so tired when I got off the computer last night, I completely forgot to mention your last 4 pictures! The detail is astounding and I love all of them. That Black-headed Grosbeak is stunning and the little Anna's Hummer in the fountain is too cute for words!
Countrymom, that is so neat about the crows. They only fly over our place, but never land here.
Very nice pictures, Hack and duc. :) I like Canada geese and I sure have a soft spot for Mourning Doves. I don't know why it bothers me so, but it was so upsetting to have Iowa allow a dove hunting season beginning last year. According to other birders, the Mourning Dove population exploded this year. Some one said they hope the doves get themselves into the towns where hunting isn't allowed.
Here's two more by the little guy... There was a whole series, but these are my favorites. There was a picture of this Orchard Oriole standing in the water, calm. But then dipped its bill in the water and for some reason it just shot up in the air. Other pictures showed it flapping above the water, before landing off to the side.
I think the mourning doves are one of my favorites too. They do seem to enjoy just hanging out and sometimes napping in my feeders. The crows come to the patio to get peanuts. They are so intelligent, and they fascinate me. You know how they like to take two or three peanuts at a time ? One of the babies has figured out to lay to peanuts side by side, put a third on top like a pyramid, and then take all three.
Countrymom, your crows are so sweet. I just read that the babies sometimes stick with the parents for up to five years. That explains why I see three of them here a lot of the time. Guess you're never too old to learn something new about the birds you love. That's funny about your crow grabbing three peanuts.
Hack, that's a great link for the black-eyed susans. I have lots of them in my garden and I've always just put the dried blooms in a paper bag, roll the top closed and shake. If anyone wanted some seeds, I'd be happy to send them, but I usually just leave them out for the birds.
Chillybean, that's sad to hear about the dove hunting season. Poor little ones are so friendly it would be more like a slaughter. Love your bathing oriole.
Nutsaboutnature, cute photos of your birds. Rain? We badly need some here but never see it.
As of last night we have two bad wildfires at the east end of our small county. It's over 100 every day here and the fires are in the mountains so please keep our firefighters in your thoughts and prayers.
Here's a northern flicker that let me walk up close, a pair of western grebes (nesting time), a great blue heron and a black phoebe.
Chillybean, it just sickens me to think of all those gentle doves being hunted. I agree with duc, it really is more like a slaughter. I love all the Mourning Doves that hang around our yard. They are such gentle, nonagressive birds and are a joy to watch.
Love the pics, duc. The Great Blue Herons are so incredibly graceful. Hope they get those fires under control very quickly.