Protecting.

I climbed 58 steps to the top of an outdoor platform for exercise, and to take a look around this very flat part of the world. After a moment or two this Merlin began diving on me, likely protecting a nearby nest. A moment of searching did not turn it up, and since my presence was an unnecessary (and obviously unwelcome) distraction, I decided to stop looking and take my leave.

It was interesting to learn, among other things, that they take over other birds’ nests.

Quite an acrobatic show.

Yesterday evening a decaying thundershower moved in, and an outflow gust front from it brought brisk and gusty wind. Turkey Vultures returning to their nearby roost rode the wind and put on quite an acrobatic show, wheeling, tilting and rocking, power diving, a few blowing through at less than treetop height.

I caught this one in a stoop, wings drawn in, losing altitude in a hurry.

First sighting – of something.

A couple weeks ago I saw this unfamiliar bird hopping around the backyard, keeping away from the open lawn. I gave up ID’ing it after a short time.

While reviewing photos tonight I tried again and narrowed it down to either a Gray-cheeked Thrush or a Swainson’s Thrush, cannot decide which. I am inclined to say Swainson’s because of the distinct eyering, though they seem to forage mostly in trees.

Whichever it was, it is the first time I remember seeing such a bird.

ongbird

As attractive.

I mix whole shelled sunflower seed into what goes in the feeders. In wet weather I watch how much of this I put out, since it spoils so quickly.

For American Goldfinches, it’s as attractive a food as the in-shell sunflower.

Aptly named.

I saw this bird Wednesday afternoon making its way along some of the Manitoba maples’ limbs. Unfortunately neither camera nor binoculars were handy. I made a point to have the camera handy this afternoon and fortunately it paid another visit.

It seems to be the aptly named Black-andwhite Warbler, possibly a female since the belly streaks appear to be a buff colour. I don’t recall ever seeing it before. I am pleased to have seen it flitting about.

First visit.

I happened to be sitting on the deck when this Baltimore Oriole made its first visit of the season to my backyard hummingbird feeder, which it prefers to the larger oriole feeder.

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