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Our Bird Sanctuary
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January 2017
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Calzephyr [userpic]
My backyard birds

Hi bird friends, I don't have any lovely photos of birds to share, but I do have cool stories to share.

Regretfully our neighbourhood has all the regular birds you would expect in a North American city - sparrows, robins, house finches, magpies and crows. Ducks and Canada geese fly overhead. Occasionally I spot a small hawk or merlin.

I live next to a big playing field and I love looking out the back window and watching the lives of our everyday birds. There is at least one big crow family and two magpie families - maybe they're related because I see them in the field together. A week or so ago a parent crow was in the field with the babies who were foraging and learning to fly. It was precious to watch! Meanwhile the other parent crow was like a gargoyle on the neighbour's rooftop.

The magpie family was farther down the field, but one took flight - and the rooftop crow laid the smackdown on it, eek! It was something to watch. The magpies seem to like our rooftop because I always see them swoop and can hear them rattling in the gutters. I was outside and one of them dropped something - which was thankfully a harmless pine cone stripped of its side :S

Now, we also have a storm pond nearby and I didn't realize until recently that it was a great birding spot. I don't have a great lens for my camera - I wish I had a 200mm to call my own. The storm pond is dressed up as a water feature with a multituse pathway around it. It's popular with cyclists and joggers, but make no mistake, if the wind is blowing the wrong way, it gets pretty smelly!

Anyway, I was up early one Sunday morning and joined the seniors power walking around the storm pond and I was in bird heaven! It was so peaceful and noisy at the same time. There were shrill red winged blackbirds - and their babies. Ducks - and ducklings still! I was really enjoying it all. Then - a heron took off from the middle of the storm pond. Somehow I didn't notice it before until it flew away - and it was so freaking majestic! I was absolutely in awe :)


Whereabouts do you live?

That's great, that you have a pond to go and birdwatch at! Maybe I shouldn't laugh, but your story of the poor magpie being smacked down by the crow made me smile - ah, birds!! :)

The other day, an Eurasian blackbird (I live in the UK) gave a grey squirrel a couple of whacks with its claws!! I've never seen that before! Squirrel seemed quite surprised too!

LOL I love the drama filled lives of birds. The squirrel probably wondered what he did wrong. Years ago a pair of crows were fighting near my bus stop and the loser swooped on a wild rabbit that was feeding nearby. I guess the crow had to make itself feel better :D

Thanks for your stories! They made me smile. :)

I think there's nothing quite so satisfying and enjoyable as watching the local birds. You've got to know them and some of their quirks and it's lovely to feel that connection as well as the wonder at something unusual like a heron taking flight.

I freely admit that I shamelessly attract birds to my garden with food, so we get huge numbers coming there. People are always saying to me that they never see birds, but I tell them to just open their eyes and look around and see what is flying through the air or perched on a branch. They don´t know what they´re missing.

I totally agree with you! I love watching birds. I wish I knew why - maybe it comes from having pet birds most of my life.

I'm having lunch right now in a park downtown and I bet folks don't realize how organized the little gang of sparrows that lives here are. I feel like a dozen pairs of eyes are on my sandwich and I have already had one drive by :)

The only place I can recall not seeing birds was in Las Vegas. Not even some humble pigeons hanging out on the rooftop!