It was really windy on Sunday afternoon. Bird activity was slower than usual, but it was a gorgeous warm day, and I headed out to the backyard bird blind. Our cat Whiskey was delighted to supervise me from the screened porch.
Our little Ruby-throated Hummingbird continues to delight me. It’s the first time we’ve had a hummer winter in the backyard. Watching him guard his territory and defend his feeder is such a joy. Turns out he often zooms back from the feeder and hovers for a few seconds after nectaring, which makes it easier to take his glamour shot…
In some of the images, you can see a dusting of pollen on Zippy’s head. I wonder how it got there? It’s a mystery! ;-)
The Painted Buntings were unusually quiet on this particular afternoon. The high winds kept everybody close to ground. The most activity was at the peanut feeder. Everybody wanted to come in and get a treat!
It was a good afternoon for warblers. I’d seen a Yellow-throated Warbler as I got set up. Then a Yellow-rumped, then the Pine, a Palm, and finally an Orange-crowned. The Orange-crowned decided to take a bath, and he rewarded me with a fun view of his orange crown.
As we heard Cedar Waxwings and American Robins flying overhead, a single Eastern Bluebird called from a nearby tree. Then an Eastern Phoebe joined in the party: Phoebe, Phoebe!
The Northern Cardinals are starting to think about nesting and protecting their territory. One male chased another male out of the backyard. Then a female in spiffy breeding plumage came by. When her mate pigged out at the nut feeder, I thought he was going to offer her a morsel. But no, he wanted all those peanuts to himself!
Turns out this cardinal was very possessive of his peanuts. I watched a Gray Catbird fly over to the feeder, and the cardinal chased him away. Once, twice, three times, four times…this cardinal wasn’t giving up!
Zippy made his last appearance as the light really started to fade. He’s a big fan of the purple salvia in the backyard. I bet he can’t wait for the firespike and coral porterweed to start blooming again! Look closely at his head and you’ll see his nectar hat.
The Gray Catbird got the last laugh – and the last peanut! Sssh, don’t tell Mr. Cardinal!
Find my birding list from today on eBird.
What a wonderful yard session! Winter birding without leaving home!
That second image is too cool. The Salvia Queen is blessing Zippy with fairy dust.
Our yard Cardinal is also a bully when it comes to the feeders. Must be a guy-wearing-red thing.
Thanks for sharing some of your visitors, Jess!
The Salvia Queen and fairy dust! I like that! :)
I hope everybody isn’t tired of Zippy because I might be guilty of taking many, many pictures of him…more coming soon! :)