New Seed, Familiar Faces

This gallery has 2 images. These daily visitors of ours have rapidly depleted the 1 kg of wild bird seed that we bought for them in mid-December, and today’s replenishment was with a new 6 kg bag and an even greater variety of seeds for them. Our feathered friends have quite different personalities. The Dark-Eyed Juncos, or “junkies” as we’ve nicknamed them, are the least skittish (and most common) of our backyard denizens (furred or feathered). They are often the first to feed, and the last to leave at the end of the day. They often come in groups, and don’t often scatter when a camera is close by.

Dark-Eyed Junco perches on tree branch

On the other hand, the more colourful and bigger birds, like the Varied Thrush and Spotted Towhee, are quick to flee at the first sight (or scent) of humans. The quail-like Varied Thrush is a leaf turner, and copies the run-and-stop maneuvers of the robin. The Spotted Towhee announces its arrival by constantly flicking its tail feathers like a windshield wiper as it hops out from the kiwi branches onto the planters that will bring it closer to the seed bowl. 

Varied Thrush pauses on woodchips ("I've been made!")

The Red-Shafted Northern Flickers and Downy woodpeckers are content to feed until they decide they want to leave. Today we spotted a pigeon (a few were noisily pacing on the roof), and another starling on the lawn; both, however, were rather quick to vacate the premises. I dream of the day when the Black-Capped Chickadees will eat out of my hand.

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