Birds coming back

We’ve been following the Bald Eagles at Fort St. Vrain power plant closely this spring. But other birds are showing up, too.

Male Spotted Towhee

Spotted Towhees scratch in the soil for insects. But in the spring, you can hear the males calling “tche-tche-tche-cheee!”as they perch on the tips of trees. (https://amylaw.blog/2014/06/02/spotted-towhee/)

Chickadee gathering hair from an old suet feeder.

A pair of black-capped chickadees spent the winter in the neighborhood. It looks like they might nest here this summer, too. Actually, we’ve had chickadees around for a couple of years. https://amylaw.blog/2018/05/03/a-little-housekeeping/

Red-tailed Hawk sitting on the railing of a fence in the yard of the people behind us. They keep chickens and have cotton-tailed rabbits living under the porch.

Last fall there was a Red-Tailed Hawk cruising through the neighborhood. https://amylaw.blog/2018/12/13/red-tailed-hawk/

I don’t know for sure that this is the same bird, but as I pointed out last fall, it is a little unusual for them to be hunting in the semi-wooded suburbs.

And this bird is hunting. Another neighbor said that he came out to get the morning paper, and it was ripping up a rabbit it had caught in his front yard. He said it didn’t fly off as he approached, so he decided to get the paper later.

Today I heard a Crow burbling as it flew fast overhead. It joined another to harass the Red-tail, at times almost driving it into the ground.

With all that drama going on overhead, I almost missed the ringing zipping sound of a Broadtailed Hummingbird heading west into the mountains. https://amylaw.blog/2018/05/09/summer-cant-be-far-away/

I always wonder what they eat this early in the spring. https://amylaw.blog/2017/05/18/hummers-in-snowstorm/And then I go make up some sugar water to put in the feeders for them.

Spring is coming. Really.

If we can just hold on a little longer, spring is coming. How do I know? Robins, dark-eyed juncos and rufus-sided towhees are back at the feeders.

Dark-eyed juncos come in many different plumages. You know that they are dark-eyed juncos, though, because they have dark eyes, and they have a yellow beak.

Dark-eyed juncos come in many different plumages. You know that they are dark-eyed juncos, though, because they have dark eyes, and they have a yellow beak.

This dark-eyed junco looks more like the next bird, a Rufus-sided towhee than the previous junco. But compare the beaks.

This dark-eyed junco looks more like the next bird, a rufus-sided towhee than the previous junco. But compare the beaks.

Rufus-sided towhee has more distinct wing bars and a dark beak compared to the juncos.

Rufus-sided towhees have more distinct wing bars and a dark beak compared to the juncos. They are also a bit larger than juncos.

Also, as I was walking into to library this morning, I heard a crow making a weird ringing “B’Dong! B’Dong!  B’Dong! B’Dong!” call. It drew a crowd as people interpreted the call as “Hello! Hello!”If I tried I could kinda hear “Hello! Hello!  Hello! Hello!” instead of “B’Dong! B’Dong!  B’Dong! B’Dong!” Maybe it was imitating the sounds it heard from the patrons entering the library.

This crow made to most un-crow-like "B'Dong! B'Dong!" call. Some people felt it sounded more like "Hello! Hello!

This crow made to most un-crow-like “B’Dong! B’Dong!” call. Some people felt it sounded more like “Hello! Hello!

One man walking by stated that it was “a crow mating call.” I haven’t been able to confirm that crows make a very un-crowlike “B’Dong! B’Dong!  B’Dong! B’Dong!” when searching for a mate, but I can’t deny it yet, either. It does say that crows are capable of some very odd sounds, well beyond the classic “caw”.

So hang in there! The weather for the rest of the week should melt off some snow!