Flashing a crown of gold like a beacon….and with golden feet, too!

There were two of these cute little birds with golden feet and equally golden crowns flitting through our Mt. Ash tree yesterday afternoon.  Try as I might to get a decent picture of them, it was a trial, as they rarely stayed still long enough.  Just as I would focus on one, it flitted off after an insect….frustrating.  Along with the fact that it was very overcast, my pictures are far from acceptable, but I wanted to show their golden feet and crowns….the very appropriately named Golden-crowned Kinglet….a very cute little bird and full of energy.

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This one didn’t look too happy about having its picture taken…..love the pattern on its face.

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As mentioned before, there was also a Brown Creeper in the yard a couple of days ago, but when I looked at the pictures I took, they were just awful….a brown and white blob that looked like a growth on the tree.  The bird blends in with the tree trunk it climbs and it, too, moves quickly up the tree, making it difficult to get a photo.  It’s interesting to watch, though, since it climbs up the tree trunk, as opposed to the Nuthatches that climb down the tree trunks.

Jenn….to answer your question about the monster storm…..we did get a very rainy day two days ago, but we’ve had worse rainstorms.  I just spoke with my brother Eddie, who lives near us in FL, but prior to that he lived along a lagoon in Manahawkin, NJ.   A friend of his whose home is for sale there, said that all the homes there are under four feet of water.  It’s difficult to imagine the damage this storm caused, not to mention the loss of lives.  My heart goes out to everyone affected by this tragedy. 

I also agree that “seeing is absorbing”….I like to think it’s like having a “bird in the hand” to help you with identifying birds.  It would be great if those Evening Grosbeaks came to the yard more often.  Their colors are so striking, but we see them so infrequently and I think the little flock that was here was just passing through and migrating.  What we do have in abundance these days are the Black-capped Chickadees and Red-breasted Nuthatches. There is a feeding frenzy every day at the feeders hanging off the roof overhang in the back of the house.  We’ve never had this kind of activity before, nor have we had to fill the feeders so often.  During the summer, I fill them every few weeks, but now I’m filling them every few days.  Since it’s impossible to get an accurate count for these two species, I have to assume that we have dozens of them.  There are at least six birds at each of the two feeders at any given time and after they’ve taken their seeds and flown off, there are others to take their place immediately.  Both birds store their food for future use, so it makes me wonder if they think it’s going to be a rough winter.  They had a mild winter here last year, but perhaps they know something we do not.  Makes me glad we’ll be in FL soon.

We’ve also had an abundance of Mourning Doves in the yard over the past couple of days, sometimes as many as 30.  The number of Black Ducks has increased over the past few days.  Where we often had two or three, yesterday there were 11, but even that number is low, because we’ve had as many as 48.  It was always fun to watch them leave the river and waddle up the hill in single file to get to the corn that was scattered on the ground for them.  I wondered why they just didn’t fly up from the river, since they always fly back after they’ve finished eating. 

By the way, Jenn, thanks for the info on what a half-marathon is.  If you think you can find the time to train for the marathon, good for you.  Go for it. 

SLB, I do have some more photos from Ft. De Soto.  I thought you had seen the Yellow-throated Warbler when I did.  I tried so hard to get a decent picture of it.  We will definitely have to go there again.  I also have some photos from that visit to post to the WBIT? site….shorebirds and Terns…as usual, they always give me trouble.

DaLo, I’m glad you found out what happened to the Crane that died.  What a pity that it broke its leg while landing.  As for those petrol prices….I will never be able to figure out the difference between gallons and litres…I leave that up to Terry, but yes the Canadian gallon is 4.5 litres…..the Imperial gallon, as Terry keeps telling me.  By now, you may have noticed that the price per gallon went up again, since that’s what happened here today…..yesterday it was $1.20.9 and today it’s $1.25.9/litre.  Unlike the US, prices here are only changed every two weeks as regulated by the government, and there is little to no variation from one station to the other.  That’s not the case in the US.

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