Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night. (Rainer Maria Rilke)

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

The Great Backyard Bird Count

I'm getting ready to participate in the 19th annual Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) that starts this week on Friday, February 12 through Monday, February 15, 2016.

What you do is to count birds in your yard for as little as 15 minutes (or as long as you'd like) on one or more days of the four-day event and report your sightings online at www.birdcount.org

You can participate from anywhere in the world.  Submissions help researchers at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society learn more about how birds are doing and how to protect them and the environment we all share.  

The male Painted Bunting above, is a regular visitor to my backyard during the winter months here in south Florida.  I can never get enough of seeing their incredible beauty flitting around the yard.

The female Painted Bunting (aka greenies) get a bit cheated in the color department when compared to the males, but I think their beautiful greens are exceptionally pretty. 

This could possibly be an immature male that hasn't developed his colors yet, but I'm not sure how to tell them apart from the females at this point.  That is something I'm definitely going to make a point of learning about!

Another shot of the Greenie Painted Bunting.  She's got her beak full of suet.  Sometimes I see them at the sunflower seed feeder and I'm always rather surprised since their favorite white millet seed is always available in the yard.  It's always interesting and fun to observe bird behavior.

The Catbird is another favorite wintertime visitor.  I love the goofy calls he makes.  And yes, he does sound a bit like a cat.

If you happened to read my previous post, you'll know who this is and who it isn't.  It's unfortunately not Chirpy the Cardinal, but the young hotshot that took over his territory.  He is a handsome devil though.  Guess I should give him a name...any suggestions?

Just one more bird photo, this one is of the female cardinal.  She was in the shadows and I lightened this up quite a bit, but it's still dark.  

It was a bit cooler weather today and all the bird feeders were full.  Even the squirrels managed to hop on this one.  It's easy access for them though, since it's by the branches.  Oh, I don't mind - they like some chow once in awhile too!


Janice Taylor said...

Hi Lynn. Love that Painted Bunting! We don't have those, but we do have the Catbird. It's been hard keeping the feeders full with this cooler weather system we're having. We also get flocks of blackbirds from the marsh behind the lake...they just sit and gobble the food. Well, they're all God's creatures, whether beautiful or not. Janice

daisy g said...

Wow, look at the color on that bird! Amazing! The bird count sounds like a fun family project. I'd simply call that cardinal "Red".
Thank you for coming to The Maple Hill Hop with your wonderful outdoor post. We love seeing you there, "neighbor"! ;0D

Lynn McIntosh said...

Hi Janice! Oh, yeah, we get a ton of the grackles and doves as well, and they sure do eat a lot, lol! In fact, I can hear them out there right now telling me to get off the computer and fill up the feeders! Hope you're having a great week!

Lynn McIntosh said...

Hi Daisy! Thanks for hosting a blog hop! I meant to particpate last week and lost track of time...well, that's nothing new, lol! And thanks for stopping over to my blog! I think Red is a great name for the new cardinal - it certainly is fitting :)

Leslie Kimel said...

Your bird photos are so beautiful, Lynn. I admire them so much! The picture of the male painted bunting is just amazing.

I love Daisy's suggestion of Red for the new cardinal's name. He certainly is handsome!

Susan said...

Hi Lynn, I'm so jealous of that Painted Bunting couple. They are stunning! I'm afraid I wouldn't get anything done with those beauties in my backyard. Hope you had fun with your count - please post it if you can.

Kate R said...

I always love your beautiful bird photos Lynn! How wonderful to have the Painted Buntings and a pair too. They really are such beautiful birds. I think they are supposed to be around but I have never seen any in the garden. I do see one or two Catbirds but I have never been able to take a photo because they seem rather shy. They do make a rather funny noise don't they! How about Rouge for the Cardinal to add a little French flair?! Haha!

- Katexx