Wild Side Ornithology Club

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by freedombecki, Mar 1, 2012.

  1. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    Yeah, I could've named this "Aesthetics of Ornithology", but would you then have opened the door to that amazing world filled with foreign-language visitors to your backyard, shoreline, National Park vacation lands, or at a friend's farm?

    Welcome to Shangri-La! Birds are a blast, but thanks to Alfred Hitchcock's epic film, "Birds" our entire culture (well, not all) grew suspicious of our global companions as fearsome interlopers rather than the caroling community and vermin eliminators who gather at backyard feeders across the civilized world, looking for a meal and leaving a song in our hearts and free fertilizer for our lawns and even the beautiful meadow flowers we see out in the country lands of America.

    If you have a favorite bird, or know what kind of bird is so beloved in your state, please share a picture or two of birds you may have photographed. Because I am approximately the world's worst photographer, I will try to share credited public domain photos to those who kindly list their pictures as nonprofit use for amateurs who just love birds and want to share a picture of a particular type of bird with those who have a love for birds in common.

    Thanks for opening the lost-leader thread, and as time goes on, I hope you enjoy the amazing world of birds, and I'm hoping one or two of you are avid birders, members of the Audubon Society, or registered ornithologists. Hey, I'm none of the above, but I love birds and admire anyone who has a degree in ornithology and respects those elusive little warblers as well as those fearsome wilderness vamps known as snowy owls, one of whom sideswiped my car on a dark, cold road in a snowstorm in Wyoming 20 years ago. Actually, it was a full-frontal assault with him diving at me, and I saw the bright yellow of his huge eyes just before he changed course and flew upwards as I was just driving down the road on the way home between Laramie and Clark's Corner. He frightened me so completely, my heart was thumping for half an hour afterward, and I'll never forget it.

    Most of my experiences watching and enjoying birds have been very good ones, and they're worth every minute I spent enjoying observing their playful antics on edging out the competition at the bird feeder. And the farm where we live now has the special treat of being a favorite spot of those fabulous and inimitable summer tanagers.

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ufkcx-UqljM]Snowy Owl Invasion - YouTube[/ame]

    Some links that may help acquaint you with a wild bird you've seen that you cannot quite name yet and other resources for understanding our feathered friends:

    Cornell Lab of Ornithology

    Macauly Library

    Patuxent Bird Identification Center


    What Bird - Novel Way to Identify the Bird you just heard or saw

    Smithsonian Institution, National Bird Collection

    British Trust for Ornithology

    Birds of North America - Life Histories of breeding birds

    Birds of Mexico Checklist

    Birds of Canada Checklist

    Birds of the USA

    Nature Worldwide Birds
     
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  2. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    Another take on To Kill a Mockingbird....

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HDqjX7gRyA]Bird Bullies Cat EPIC FAIL!!! w/YouTube Editor - YouTube[/ame]
     
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  3. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    Mountain Bluebirds
    Eye candy!

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cv3Hj2WSWec]Mountain Bluebird - Unbelievably blue!!!! - YouTube[/ame]
     
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  4. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    The Return of the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher from Mexican Winter Vacation

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsJeNNswljo"]Return of the Flycatchers - YouTube[/ame]
     
  5. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    Misidentification of the Mockingbird--claimed to be a scissortail--at least this mockingbird comes out okay...

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVvf5vZzyQQ]cat vs scissor tail - YouTube[/ame]

     
  6. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    The people of 5 states claim the Mockingbird as their State Bird. They really are characters if you are ever lucky enough to have them frequent your back yard. :)

    [​IMG]
    Mockingbird - Texas, Mississippi, Arkansas, Florida and Tennessee State Bird
     
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    Last edited: Mar 1, 2012
  7. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    hm, what? 40 views and no takers? Maybe my smutty little thread nomenclature was just too much for the true-blue ornithologists, although as science-lovers, many of them are high-minded enough to overlook such inanities to get attention to bird issues. I could always have called it the "Fowler's Blind" which would justaposition birders with hunters in war mode. /blush

    I cannot, however, not carry forward without mentioning another bird that is nothing short of eye candy if you can ignore the carping...

    Cardinalis cardinalis

    [​IMG]

    photo credits

    But the Cardinal is not just another pretty face in the Aviary Kingdom, they boast being the state bird in several states--Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and West Virginia. :)
     
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  8. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    My Audubon calendar shows the blue bunting's feathers as today's bird picture of the day. I love the bird-a-day calendar. It's a one-place resource for seeing the awesome birds of North America. These birds are just too pretty for words.

    [​IMG]

    Photo Credits, The Indigo Bunting: The smallest Sparrow Warbler

     
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    Last edited: Mar 12, 2012
  9. Baruch Menachem
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    Baruch Menachem '

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    Every guys favorite bird... The tit.
    [​IMG]
     
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  10. freedombecki
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    freedombecki Let's go swimmin'! Supporting Member

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    Last week, I got the treat of the year. A red-bellied woodpecker was rattling the bird feeder around, so I looked up from my quilt task at the ironing board to have the pleasure of seeing one of the prettiest birds ever--and I made quick mental notes of him before he flew off. He had a dark barred back and a smooth head that had a large band of red from top to just above where his wings attach. That red was absolutely the loveliest shade of scarlet, and with the white underneath showing, I thought "well, I've never seen that woodpecker before, but I know he's not the red bellied type." Ha! I looked up what I remembered, and indeed, sighting a red belly on a red-bellied woodpecker is rare, because most of them do not show one causing some ornithologists to think their name is a misnomer. There are actually some that do have a small red spot, but they may be the exception rather than the rule. I saw no red mark, but this bird was nervous and didn't care to see me seeing him enjoying the woodpecker mix I bought a couple of weeks back, just to see if woodpeckers really are out there and if they really would come to feed on tempting snacks on our large front porch. I now know, they do!

    Here's the closest one I could find to the one I saw, but I have to tell you the fellow on my front porch was stunning, sharp, cautious if not paranoid, and a thorough character, rattling his beak against the bird feeder a few times to see if he could get anything out of it. Nope! He had to eat what was at the lower end, just like everybody else, so he grabbed a few delectable bits of seeds and fruits woodpeckers like and was off. I was just standing there thinking how lucky I was to get to see one up close. The window is only a couple of feet away from the bird feeder, and the ironing board was set in front of the front bay window close to the bird feeder, on purpose. :)

     

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