Chipping Sparrow: Spizella passerina

It wouldn’t seem like summer without the sounds of the Chipping Sparrows echoing through the trees in our area. A beautiful little sparrow with their rufous crown. We see the Chipping Sparrow foraging on branches, jumping around on the ground and hopping about in the both pine and deciduous tress each summer.

More often than not a hike through the forest in July is accompanied by their song echoing through the woods. A song we thoroughly enjoy.

So here’s to the Chipping Sparrow a widespread, modest and wonderful summer companion.

Song Sparrow: Melospiza melodia

Given the enormous variety of regional differences it took a few looks and luckily photographs, to be certain this indeed was a Song Sparrow. And what a fine looking Song Sparrow it was.

For quite some time this birds perched upon a thorny branch of a small shrub. Moving back and forth and allowing us a nice long look during which were were able to inch ever closer.

After a few minutes this bird moved just a few yards away to a shrub containing leaves. While it was the same bird the image seemed to take on a different feeling. From pure blue sky and thorny shrub to a fresh field of green.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend.

Young and old

Just a couple of weeks ago the wild roses along the road were in full bloom and evening light made them oh so appealing. Yet just a few steps away were older rose bushes rose-hips still attached and full of cobwebs.

As we walked this road the pattern seems to repeat young and old, new and old over and over again.

A fine study in contrast yet none really exists.

Those Blue Legs

Always looking delicate and elegant and with those beautiful blue legs in full display and American Avocet wades through a shallow poll in search of a meal earlier this spring.

It’s hard to believe many wading birds will soon begin the perilous journey back south for the winter. Given this summers heat wave across the American west we hope some the the pools and ponds these birds rely on for their fall migration have not dried up to the point of leaving them high and dry. Migration is a dangerous business and climate change is making it more dangerous every year.

A Small Bouquet

With summer chugging along at breakneck speed a small bouquet of wildflowers, picked via camera, from a recent mornings walk feels a fitting way to start another week.

oh, and don’t forget to stop and smell the roses. They just don’t last that long.

Lupine, Wild Rose, Arrowleaf-Balsamroot and Sticky Geranium.

Deep in the Willows

On the opposite side of a field in which we were watching two coyotes prowling we heard the singing of the American Redstart. It had been quite some time since we have seen this unique little black and red warbler so we skedadled over to a thick stand of willows where thought the singing was coming from.

But low and behold, it was not an adult male making all that wonderful noise, it was an immature male hanging out deep in those willows.

Young male American Redstarts have gray-and-yellow plumage, like females, until their second fall. Yearling males sing vigorously in the attempt to hold territories and attract mates. Some succeed, but most do not breed successfully until the following year when they develop black-and-orange breeding plumage.

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/American_Redstart/overview

We had no idea immature males sang so much.