Posted in Behind the Scenes, Bookworming, Conservation, Creatures, Indoor Musings

Observing more birds hanging out this year

I’m a bit excited that both some of the rewilding efforts we’ve put in, as well as the lack of time to make things a bit tidier than usual seems to be attracting a broader variety of birds that don’t just simply buzz through our yard heading east to our neighbor that keeps feeders out year round.

A photograph of a rewilded urban backyard with two goldfinches perched on spent goldenrod from the year before.
Sorry about the blur from the window screen, but I was worried opening it might spook them, and the top storm panel was splattered by rain.

The most recent change is this is the first year where goldfinches seem to linger instead of passing through, which is a delight every time I spot them through my office window.

I’ve also been spotting other visitors I’m not really sure if they’ve been here before and I simply didn’t spot them, or I’m just becoming more observant and understanding of differences between ones that look similar (like the various sparrows).  I definitely perk up now that the windows are open more often and I hear a song type I don’t recognize or remember.  The Cornell Bird Lab site has been helpful when I’ve had time to use it to ID birds beyond what my Audubon Songbirds and Familiar Backyard Birds-East book reveals.  I’ve been updating the Critters page here when I’m fairly certain I’ve identified one I hadn’t before, or just putting their general common name when not.

Like this other recent visitor below that I’m fairly certain is a wren, but I’m not yet certain if it is a House Wren even though I don’t think it’s a Carolina Wren, another bird known to be in our area, because it doesn’t have the white stripe over its eye.

A photo of what is likely a House Wren.
I’m still not positive, but I believe this is a House Wren, Troglodytes aedon.

I’ve been hoping to start recording some bird song to share, and did manage to do so one day a bit ago.  However, time has not been on my side as far as learning how best to handle the audio files so I can share them here.  I also had to halt my research into what habitat needs various bird types that can live in our area have, but that’s been on hold more than not since growing season began.  Two more fall/winter projects at this point.  *chuckle*

I have noticed that a lot of the lingering birds that didn’t use to do so seem to always be perching on the spent goldenrod.  Since I happen to still have some outside my office window, that may also be why I’m noticing them hanging about more because of how much time I spend in here–especially given the crazy weather swings we’ve had this year.

Based on this observation, I’m thinking to incorporate more plants that present perches like them when they’re not dead because although they may take cover in trees or shrubs as well, I think it’s the fact that their view isn’t obstructed by branching so they can keep an eye out for predators is key.  This is also a reason I need to get cracking on the pond addition, because some of the plants for that will have similar structured plantings.  I’m also hoping to add  a few new bushes if not this year, then next spring–including the poor Ozark Witch-hazel that is still waiting patiently in its container to be planted.

Have folks been noticing changes or not in their backyard birds this year?  Feel free to share below.

Care to share thoughts on this?