Wintertime Miracles

Good afternoon everyone and welcome. It is great to see you today. Thank you for stopping by last week for my review of Victoria Avilan‘s ‘The Art of Peeling an Orange.’ Stay tuned for more book reviews in the future. Today I’m sharing some recent happenings.

For what seemed like weeks was actually only six days of rain. On days like these, I like to sit in my backyard under my lanai, sipping a warm mug of coffee watching the rainfall. It is very peaceful and the rhythm of the rain has a soothing and cozy effect on me. We can sit out here for hours enjoying each moment.

Now the clouds have parted and we are enjoying sunny days. A few days ago, we were watching the backyard and noticed a few things. We have various birds visiting us each day except when it is raining. They are such a magnificent sight. One day I caught sight of two local bird scoping out our backyard. One of the was a Goldfinch and the other was a Black Phoebe. I was able to snap a picture of both birds. I did a little research on them as well.

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Our Goldfinch is in the center of the right photo standing in the grass. These small birds love to feast on our wildflowers in our backyard and will come in numbers. They also like seeds and will eat sunflower seeds out of feeders. Only on occasion or when they are feeding will they eat insects.

They like open areas and will nest in saplings. Their small nests are tightly woven so that they can hold water. They mate in late July but can be found all year around.

If you want Goldfinches to come to visit your yard, plant thistle, dandelions, and other wildflowers. They are a friendly species.

www.allaboutbirds.org

file jan 13, 07 22 15img_1428Our Black Phoebe is sitting on my black quartz rock in the picture below. Did you know they are excellent flycatchers? Unfortunately, they don’t eat mosquitoes. They love to hang out in our garden during the day waiting for their next meal. They are seen year-round in Southern California. Although they prefer to be around coastal cliffs and riverbanks, they do well in urban developments provided they are near water and mud. They will nest under building eaves or hollowed out trees.

During mating season they court and when they find a mate, they are monogamous up to five years.  They tend to have two brooding seasons a year and both birds feed their young. They don’t like to socialize outside of breeding season. They have a piercing chirpy voice.

What makes the Black Phoebe stand out from other birds is that they do this action with their tails that you can see from a distance. They are assertive avians and will distract their predators. They prefer to stay close to the ground so they can scope out branches and other places for prey. They will catch insects mid-air.

https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/black-phoebe

http://www.allaboutbirds.org

In addition to the Goldfinch and the Black Phoebe, we get hummingbirds in our yard.  It is fun to watch them buzz around our plants.

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This video was taken a few years ago, but the birds still like our aloe plants when they are blooming. As you can see, the hummingbirds’ movements are quick and short like a helicopter. They often hover in the air and they make a humming sound with their wings. They are the smallest bird species known and are native to all three of the Americas. They make small, but deep nests in foliage. They love ivy on buildings. They lay eggs the size of jellybeans and their offspring is incredibly small. They are very territorial and will push predators out.

Smart birds, they can remember every flower they ever visited and this count is often over 1,000 a day. They also need the nectar for their incredibly fast metabolism.

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Annas_Hummingbird

I had the opportunity to witness a Hummingbird’s nest and was amazed. The birds were the size of a sewing thimble and were so delicate looking.
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What types of birds or a miracle of nature have you seen?

Thank you for stopping by today. I would love to hear from you. If you want to say hello or share about your bird experience feel free to do so in the comments. Be sure to visit next week when I’ll be presenting my review for Rachel Maldonado‘s ‘Shelvis.’

Until Next Time,

Lynn

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