The second wave of spring birds is back, and although I haven't seen many of them I've certainly heard them. They fill the woods with their songs as I go on my walks. The past 3 days I've heard White-throated Sparrows, Field Sparrows, and Brown Thrashers; they all have calls that are easy to recognize. But here are three other birds I've seen and actually got photographs of.
On Tuesday our Photo Group went walking along the boardwalk at Bognor Marsh. The Tree Swallows were buzzing all around our heads, and sitting on nest boxes right beside us!
Someone has put up a whole line of nest boxes along part of the boardwalk, and it looked like every one was occupied by a pair. They were coming and going constantly.
Swallows are insect eaters, and they swoop and soar and dive beautifully in their search for flying insects. It's worth putting bird houses for them in your yard for the mosquitoes they eat!
Walking the trail today in to check out a beaver pond where we're going to have to rebuild a boardwalk, I heard a loud harsh call, followed by a rapid loud drumming in one of the tall Sugar Maples in the fencerow. Luckily I had my small binoculars and spotted it. Can you see it here?
It's a Northern Flicker, and one shot was clear enough that I could crop it down a little so you can see the red on the back of its head.
But those Turkey Vultures are still one of the most common birds to see, because there's usually at least one in the sky somewhere, and often several. This is my usual view of them.
But on my hike out to the cliff Monday I was lucky enough to look down on them, soaring over the fields and forest below me. They seem black against the blue sky, but from above they look much more brown in colour.
I even got another shot with pretty good focus which I could crop down to give a close view. They seem to love the cliffs and slopes of the valley and often soar along the edge, either just above or below the cliff line.