One for the Birds

  • @NickG said in One for the Birds:

    It will suck if he gets eaten but won't be the fault of the critter that eats him

    My sentiments exactly.

    Cats love human company, but they are, at heart, feral. To adopt a cat and then keep it locked inside... No.

    But the other side of this is that while cats may be fairly high on the food chain, they are not at the top. I don't think they have much to fear from mountain lions or most domestic dogs, but coyotes and eagles are another story. And cars.

  • This is pretty cool:

    Snowy Owl Stops in Central Park for the First Time Since 1890

    On January 27, a crowd gathered in New Yorkโ€™s Central Park to see a rare spectacle: a snowy owl that made a pit stop at the North Meadow baseball and softball diamonds.

    Wife wonders whether this is a good thing or potentially some kind of climate change warning. Hmm... I kind of think not - it is a single bird. Maybe weather but I think, if so, more likely some storm or such that affected the owl's route? Ah, but now we're back to weather wh/could be linked to climate change. Circles w/in circles...

    Regardless, still pretty cool. Would have liked to have seen that. ๐Ÿ‘


    Photo courtesy (EJ Bartolazo/ via Associated Press). Hope this qualifies as "fair use". If not, please advise and I shall remove.

  • NKG_3749.jpg

  • We got to look at Heidi's pet Great Horned owl on Tuesday. He looked back.


  • I do not want to litter this thread with a bunch of youtube links but this is pretty cool and I figured @was-dar wouldn't want to miss it. Enjoy! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1 Eaglet 1 Egg - NEFL Cam 1 - Live Bald Eagle Cam


  • Okay, bird geeks, help me here.

    We took a walk around the lake above our place today and, walking down to the shore in a small park at the far end, I spotted something I've never seen here before... Great big white birds the size of geese. Large geese.

    Could they be swans? Do swans live anywhere near here? (Here being just a bit north of the Canada/US border right on the Pacific coast.)

    Here is the best picture I could get on my phone -- you'll have to click on it, then click again on the new image to get the full size.

    Birds on Cranberry Lake.jpg

  • @David-Harris From what I can see, those look like swans to me. Old eyes need a bit more zoom. Size looks right. Appear to be black beaks. The few "albino" geese I have seen did not.

  • @David-Harris We have three species of swans that can be regularly found somewhere in North America. Tundra swans can be found in the thousands here in the Sacramento Valley. If one is really into it and looks over an entire flock, then it is possible to identify a Trumpeter Swan, which I first noticed and learned while cross country skiing in Jackson Hole on my first ever snow camp trip in winter 78/79. I was not a birder at the time but they were memorable flying in a V fairly low with the Tetons glowing behind them. Fortunately I never took pictures or owned a camera pre digital era so the memory is that much more burned into me banks.

    Anyway, I digress.... Your neck of the woods have both Trumpeters and Tundras. I try very hard to resist identifying birds from internet photos but I hightly recommend using digital access to compare the head and bill color/length. You will have either the satisfaction of learning a new thing, or become even more frustrated at being unable to be confidant on identification. Either outcome is part of becoming a birder.

  • @Alfalfa said in One for the Birds:

    You will have either the satisfaction of learning a new thing, or become even more frustrated at being unable to be confidant on identification. Either outcome is part of becoming a birder.

    Hi Andy. Thanks for confirming that swans do live in this area. I couldn't think of anything else (other than albino geese) they might be.

    And don't worry about me becoming either excited or frustrated by what I might or might not learn if I dug into it further. As I've explained here before, I divide birds into two categories: those I like to eat, and everything else. Beyond that, well, I enjoy seeing them all around, but that's the end of it...


    Yeah, I sometimes get into arguments with Basil over where a particular bird fits into my classification system because he (being a cat) finds rather more species than I do in the "like to eat" category.

    Joking aside, one of the joys of living here is hanging out on the cliffs high above the ocean and watching the ravens, eagles, and vultures circling endlessly below.

  • Can any of you bird fanciers identify this guy? (Yeah, shitty photo, but it's a blow-up from a shot taken 30 ft away with my cell phone).

    I first saw it pecking away at an old stump I'd planed off at ground level and which is pretty rotten. Looked like it was thinking there might be bugs in the rotting wood.


  • @David-Harris a woodpecker, Northern Flicker, likely a red shafted form. Yellow shafted flickers are more east.

  • @Alfalfa Thanks. I thought it looked like some kind of flicker, but wasn't sure.

    They're fairly common here. Pretty low-key coloration (no red, for example) except when the fly away and display a bright white patch on their lower backs.

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