BLJA, TOSO, SSHA.... oh my!!!
- Yes yesterday brought some Thanksgiving treats to our Swift Current
yard.... In the morning, I looked out into the backyard - just in time
to see a Sharp-shinned Hawk sitting on the edge of the retaining wall in
the garden area. I ran for the camera... in the minute or so it took me
to get it, the Sharpie had moved into the garden and was standing on the
ground just over from a buffaloberry bush - with migrant sparrows within
less than a foot from it. (I think it is likely the culprit that left
the two eaten Robin carcasses in the yard the past couple weeks.) Larry
didn't see Sharpie as he was gone at the time (he just had my photos
through the dirty window to validate the sighting.) He trumped me
though, in the later afternoon, when I was gone.... around 5:30PM he
heard an awful noise, looked up into the trees and saw 2 Blue Jays (one
was mostly hidden in the leaves). He looked at the trees closer and
also found a Townsend's Solitaire. Nice!!!
Besides this excitement, we also continue to have dwindling numbers of
migrant sparrows. We currently are still enjoying 1 Lincoln's Sparrow,
1 Song Sparrows, 30-40 or so White-throated Sparrows, 4 Harris'
Sparrows, 15-20 White-crowned Sparrows, and at least 9 Dark-eyed
Juncos. We also continue to see a few Gulls (flying over), 3 Northern
Flickers, 3 Black-billed Magpies, an occasional American Crow or two
(flying over), 2-4 Red-breasted Nuthatches, 1 Golden-crowned Kinglet,
15-30 American Robins, 30+ Cedar Waxwings, 1 or 2 Yellow-rumped
"Myrtle" Warblers, 3 Common Grackles (passing through the yard
occasionally), a few House Finches (we haven't been filling up the
sunflower seed feeder lately, so they only pass through occasionally
right now), a few Pine Siskins, and at least 30 House Sparrows.
Robins Robins Robins.... oh my goodness!! At times, there are 5 bathing
at once and more waiting 'on deck' - either on the ground nearby, or in
the Mountain Ash tree!!! At one point yesterday, we had at least 12
or 13 Robins within a 10 foot radius in our front yard, and more in the
neighbours' trees just waiting to fly in. And fight.... there have been
several fights over the rights to the birdbath. I don't know why some
just don't go into the backyard. They seem they would just prefer
fighting for the sake of fighting. (Sounds like some people I know!)
We also continue to see at least one young Nuttall's Cottontail and 2 -
4 Gray Squirrels (3 Black and 1 Gray-phased) almost every day... They
still haven't discovered the new squirrel feeder (with a glass jar)
yet. I think we are going to relocate this feeder.... because it is on
a post that holds 2 nestboxes, so we were thinking we really do not want
the squirrel to be on the same post as the nestboxes come next Spring.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone....
- Mary Ann and Larry, Swift Current
50° 17' 00" N - 107° 48' 00" W
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