Both my efforts at attracting more birds to our feeders, and my efforts at taking bird pictures have been pretty well abject failures this winter! I added both a niger seed feeder, and a suet feeder, but still very rarely see any visiting birds except the faithful group of Chickadees that seems to live in our Cedars beside the feeders, and a small flock of Goldfinch that visits regularly.
Mind you, this Goldfinch was at least showing that tell-tale hint of bright yellow that will become its summer plumage, an encouraging sign.
And I can almost always count on 2 or 3 Chickadees to be making their constant flights back and forth with seeds to crack open. Compared to the Goldfinch that just sit on the feeders and eat, the Chickadees have to work hard for their sustenance!
But today we had a large flock of Goldfinch descend on the meadow, as well as the feeders. There seemed to be dozens and dozens of them for about 30 minutes, stripping the weeds of their seeds as fast as they could go.
I think those dark seed heads are all the troublesome Spotted Knotweed, a tough invasive weed which I should get rid of, but the birds seem to like them.
And here they're eating seeds of the Evening Primrose.
I spotted several ground-feeding Juncos, and did see a Blue Jay once or twice for a few seconds.
And the day before a big flock of finches visited briefly and overwhelmed the feeders. I had labelled this as a House Finch, but as you'll see in the comments below, Woody Meristem suggests it is a Purple Finch, a more unusual bird here.
Here's a second view of the same photo, cropped a bit. Looking at my trusty Peterson's bird guide, I have to agree with him, the pinkish/red colour extending down the breast, and down the back as well. And the small bird on the lower right is actually a Pine Siskin, showing a hint of yellow about the wing and tail feathers. Interesting coincidence, but David Gascoigne left a comment suggesting I should look for them.
And that makes these two females Purple Finch as well, clearly streaked in brown. Thanks Woody!
We have had a Downy Woodpecker stop by the suet feeder a few times.
And if I go all the way back to December we did have the bigger Hairy Woodpecker visit a few times. I think I may have posted this picture then.
And that's pretty well all the birds we've seen this year, the last two days about as exciting as it's been! Mind you, it's time to start watching for the spring migrants returning, so maybe that will make some more exciting birding!