Friday, June 29, 2012

Blue Jays In Charge

Summer has returned.  Blue Jays have taken over the yard!  I counted five yesterday.

blue jay on branch

Blue Jays get a bad rap.  Whenever I tell people I like them their eyes glaze over....and those are the bird people I'm talking about!  I don't know why just because a bird is common, that should detract from how wonderful they are.  Be glad that we have them!

blue jay on house

So they scare other birds away from the bird feeder and bird bath.  They are not the only ones!  I can't blame them for their natures.

blue jay in bird bath

On a hot day like today, I'm thinking about scaring the blue jays out of the bath myself!

Enjoy the weekend - Cheerily

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Fledgling Cardinal

male cardinal
More young birds today.  The morning was overcaste, with little activity, but by noon the sky was clearing and the birds were bouncing and flying around.  I was sitting watching a male northern cardinal; I noticed he was ducking in and out of our favorite perennial garden, finding something to eat on the ground at garden's edge.

fledgling cardinal
There seemed to be something else in the flowers holding his attention, and making some faint noises and movement.  Suddenly out came a young fledgling cardinal.  So cute.  He or she sat in the sun, looking around.

male cardinal with fledgling
The little bird slowly followed his/her father (I assume) along the ground, watching while he searched for food.

fledgling cardinal at garden's edge
She looked around, seeming a little dazed.

male cardinal forages while fledgling watches

Looking on while the father bird picks at the ground.  Sorry for the blurry action shots....

male cardinal feeds fledgling

Success - the father bird feeds the young one.

Meanwhile, still hearing that wood thrush, more than one in fact.  Went into woods to find, no luck!

Enjoy the evening - Cheerily

Saturday, June 23, 2012

A Young Blue Jay Slips Off Feeder Tray

blue jay slips on tray
 Lots of young blue jays flying around the yard today.  This young one tried out the feeder, and seemed surprised to find the tray so slippery.
blue jay tries to recover

Later, finding something to eat in a safer spot, on the ground!

blue jay finds food
Enjoy the evening - Cheerily

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Better Observer

Was thinking today how bird watching makes us better observers.  Saw this bird on a distant tree....

bird in distance

Zoomed in a little closer....

bird in distance a little closer

And a little closer....

bird in distance even closer

Then realized it was a hummingbird.

ruby-throated hummingbird

The bird flew to a closer tree, and I was able to get this picture.

Enjoy the evening - Cheerily

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Happy To Hear

Was so excited yesterday!  Heard for the first time ever in our yard a wood thrush!  Wonderful!  I thought I'd heard one in the morning but didn't let myself believe until I confirmed that afternoon.  I did not think we had enough woods back there to support a wood thrush, but apparently I was wrong.  Combine this with the scarlet tanager I saw the day before, and I am in forest heaven!  No pictures though, could not find, and once I was outside looking, the wood thrush, or thrushes, stopped singing.  Hopefully will have another chance!

Meanwhile, lots and lots of rosebreasted grosbeaks!  I had two females I think on the feeder and two or more males hanging around.  For weeks I was worried I wouldn't see any, because last year I had seen them weeks earlier, and this year's spring came earlier, so I figured if anything I would see them sooner than later.  They had me fooled!

female rosebreasted grosbeaks with mourning dove
A couple of rose breasted grosbeaks and their friend, the mourning dove.

rose breasted grosbeak in tree
I have at least two of these guys hanging around the yard.

And in way of a scarlet tanager update, I heard "chick-burr", the scarlet tanager's call, over and over this evening.  He's out there somewhere!

Enjoy the heat! - Cheerily

Monday, June 18, 2012

First Time Scarlet Tanager

scarlet tanagerDreary, cold Monday morning, tough to get going.  The day ever so slowly got better.  Peaked outside to see what was happening and saw this guy in plain view.  I'd never seen a scarlet tanager in the yard.  - Cheerily

Friday, June 15, 2012

Thankful for Northern Cardinals

On this lovely Friday evening, am thankful for Northern Cardinals.  I know I am not the only one to have the experience of putting out a seed feeder and finding that the cardinals are amongst the most frequent visitors.

This evening we intended to keep our feeder empty overnight.  The birds had cleaned it out during the day; I think our local house sparrows got in there and left nothing.  But a few minutes ago I heard a cardinal singing, and I looked outside and saw he was on the empty feeder.  I felt guilty, I can hardly believe it.  I went down and filled the feeder.

- Cheerily

cardinal in tree
Northern Cardinal, one of our backyard favorites

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Welcome to My Blog, Continued

robin in bird bath
A couple of things about what I am not.  I am not a photographer, and I am not a bird expert.  I have a nice camera that takes, I think, some fun pictures.  It has a great zoom that has brought the birds closer to me; for that, I am grateful to the technology today that has made better cameras more available and accessible to those of us who aren't pros or advanced amateurs!

robin in bird bath splashing

I have been "learning the birds" for the past few years.  Many of you will know way more than me, and I hope to hear and learn from you.  I also love common birds.  Blue Jays and Robins provide me hours of great entertainment.

robin in bird bath rubbing side of bathSpeaking of which, here is a Robin who visited our bird bath the other day.  Love the bird bath; that was our first "bird" addition to our yard, and it has been a big hit.

robin in bird bath feeling fresh
Enjoy the day - Cheerily

Friday, June 8, 2012


Welcome to Birds on an Urban Edge.

oriole amongst leaves
I recently came to spend a lot of time at home.  I sit at my computer all day in front of our window facing the back yard and the woods beyond.  I've been amazed at what I've seen, and want to share it here with you and others who not only have a love of nature, but also find peace, fun, and pleasure from enjoying it simply.  Cheerily -