Borrego Springs, CA

Monday, February 8, 2010

Another inside day

Well, the weatherman was right on today.  It was rainy off and on all day.  I did my laundry and some other chores and then decided I'd try to get some photos of the birds around the feeders.

I had the window open a crack by my table, and was serenaded by this Carolina wren from the top of the debris pile about 40' outside my door.  He has been singing his heart out for about a week, but usually flies off to another perch by the time I get my camera ready.

Carolina wrens sing very loudly, and are prolific nest builders.  As spring approaches, I'll have to watch all the outside nooks and crannies of the RV.  That male will be building nests in every available crevice.  He'll build multiple nests for his honey to choose from.  A couple of years ago, I camped at Caddo Lake State Park, TX, for three nights in the spring and had to remove as many nests before I could pull in my slides and move on.  I love watching these gregarious little birds.  ;)

These winter plummage chipping sparrows are very numerous right now.  Some of these birds will stay to breed, but most will migrate north in a month or so.  Balcones Canyonlands NWR is well known for its numerous varieties of sparrows in the winter.

Another frequent visitor to the feeders is the Carolina chickadee.  What busy little birds they are.  They prefer the black oil seeds, and choose one at a time before flying off to find a branch that is just the right size so they can hold the seed with their feet and peck it open. 

Last, but not least tonight, is the house finch.  Coloration varies widely on this species, but this is a very brightly colored male.  They also love the black oil seeds.  The house finch, formerly a western bird species, can now be found in abundance all across the US.

When I was here last year, the hill country was experiencing an incredibly severe drought, and Lake Travis was at an all time low.  Lake Travis provides the water for the city of Austin and surrounding area.  According to the news this evening,  the lake has risen 41' this winter and is now at a normal level.  Even though I've only been here two weeks, I can attest to the effects of the El Nino.  :)   The rain does go on and on.......

On a side note, it only took me about 45 seconds to upload tonight's five pictures.  Wow!  Compared to the, sometimes, hours I would spend in the past, this is unbelievable.  What a difference a new computer makes.

Thanks for stopping by....talk to you later,  Judy

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