Today, for the first time ever, except for when I would be doing a Birdathon or going to learn about bird banding, I went for a walk specifically to look for birds. Oh dear… I wondered when it would happen. And now it has.
The morning was bright and sunny, though cold. That was OK, though, because my feet didn’t get muddy, but just stayed on top of the frozen mud.
As soon as I hopped out of the car, I heard them… those high pitched whistles that I have come to associate with Cedar Waxwings. Right there, but I couldn’t see them at first. Finally, one or two of them moved… Then I realized the trees were just dripping with them.
The fruit on the crabapples seemed pretty unpalatable… dry, shrivelled. But the flock gobbled them up greedily. There were two or three dozen of them, along with some Robins – also eating fruit. Chickadees hopped from here to there, but I couldn’t tell if they were also dining on crabapples, or if they were looking for something with more protein. Coming from opposite directions were the songs of Northern Cardinals, too.
I headed for the field where the Woodcock dances… I knew it was too late in the morning to actually find a Woodcock… but I hoped somebody else might be flitting around in the brushy old field full of dogwoods and goldenrod. I saw no one, but heard both Chipping Sparrows and Song Sparrows. Then it was into the woods…
I walked quickly to try to get warm. Partway to the creek, Red-bellied Woodpecker gurgled at me reminding me to stop and listen once in a while. I paused and watched Crows and listened to Tufted Titmice and White-breasted Nuthatch. Nuthatch showed me a hole in the tree… His cavity for nesting perhaps?
Where he was heading I do not know, but one lone Canada Goose flew over, honking.
Down by the creek there was a very high-pitched tsee-tsee. I recognized that sound and started scanning the bark of the trees looking for a Brown Creeper. I never found him, but I’m sure that’s who it was.
As I walked I heard more Cardinals and saw a Blue Jay. And as I headed out of the woods, the Crows went crazy! Unfortunately, they were between me and the sun, so I couldn’t see who they were pestering today. A hawk perhaps? Or an owl?
Crossing the field, I heard several Killdeer, then saw them…
When I got home, I posted my list on the Western New York Birding blog.
It’s official… Despite much reluctance, I think I now qualify as an offical Birder.
Cross posted at Confessions of a Reluctant Birder.