Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Birds At My Feeder

With migration and breeding in full swing I am getting so many birds at my feeder. On Friday alone these culprits showed up:

Papa Quail....

Mama Quail...

and babies!!!!!!!!!

I feel like the proud grandma!

Excuse me if I show off one more picture.

The gilded flickers come by almost everyday...

Thrashers are here in droves....

I keep looking for a Bendire's Thrasher with it's shorter, straighter bill, smaller triangular spots on its chest, pale base to its lower mandible and yellow eyes. Is this it? But then I read that juvenile Curve-billed thrashers are virtually identical to Bendire's Thrashers and since it is breeding and nesting season..., well, I just gave up on trying to find a Bendire's amongst my Curve-bills.

However, a beautiful Lark Sparrow was showing up for about 5 days last week. He was elusive at first, hiding in the wash and only hopping through the fence briefly, but finally he relaxed a bit and I was able to get this beautiful shot of his head.

Every few days a Canyon Towhee shows up. This one was here on Friday also.

I have discovered the Pyrrhuloxias love peanuts and I caught this one escaping from the feeder when I was busy photographing the baby quail. You can certainly see the short, stubby yellow beak that is so different from a Cardinal's. Plus, the Pyrrhuloxia does not have any black around its beak like a cardinal.

Can anyone say Kewpie Doll?

The White-winged doves are everywhere. They can be a nuisance and are the bullies of the feeders but I do love their beautiful faces.

At the end of the day as the sun was going down I glanced out the window to see this bird. I grabbed my camera, which, thank fully was within arm's reach, and snapped these photos of....

Do you know what this is?

Look at the red eye, the flat head, and the ruffed neck.

I saw my first one here last year on June 12, 2007. It's a Bronzed Cowbird!

Along with the regulars of Mourning Doves, Gila Woodpeckers, House Finches, House Sparrows and Lesser Goldfinches, I also had a Pine Siskin visiting for a couple of days. Cowbirds stop by every now and then. Lesser Nighthawks fly in the evening and early morning. Saturday I saw a Say's Phoebe in the wash and Turkey Vultures are seen daily along with Ravens. A roadrunner crossed in front of our car on Sunday and today, May 20th, I finally saw Purple Martins flying in and out of the Sentinel Saguaros at the top of the cul de sac where they stand guard on the rim of the canyon. My first sighting of them last year was May 21st.


(I couldn't resist just one more photo of the baby Gambel's Quail!)
Note: All of today's photos were taken by Kathie on Friday, May 16, 2008 except for the Gilded Flicker photo which was taken earlier in the week. All photos were taken with the Nikon D80.


Kathie Brown said...

Beth and Lynne left these comments on this post which was published below and then deleted. I'm still figuring this whole thing out and I copied and pasted their comments before I deleted the duplicate post. Thank you Beth and Lynne!

Beth said...
Those are truly amazing pictures and the baby quails are way too cute. Did you get all those pictures from your yard? Incredible.

Tue May 20, 01:22:00 PM 2008

Lynne said...
WOW Kathie! Your feeder birds are so neat! Those baby Gamble's quails are the funniest and cutest bird babies I've ever seen.
LOL- lov those little mohawk hair-do's.

Tue May 20, 01:35:00 PM 2008

jalynn01 said...

All your birds are great, but I must say I love the baby quails. Aren't they just adorable. Nice post! It's crowded at the feeders these days for you! That's Spring time.

J. Karl Clampit said...

Very nice photos! Thanks for sharing. I really enjoy your blog as I get to see pics of birds not in my region! Very nice.

I visited Phoenix in January and will travel back next month. I hope to I get to see new birds to add to my life list!

Lilli & Nevada said...

What a beautiful set of photos of birds you have there..

JP said...

I'm consistently impressed and in awe of the quality of your bird photos... And green with envy, too. But I just got a new digicam with good macro features, so perhaps there is hope yet.

nina at Nature Remains. said...

You should feel like a proud grandma!
Quail! How cute with their little topknots!
I love 'em.

I'm going to release "my" salamander babies this weekend. How is it I'm already sensing a sadness?

Doug Taron said...

The photos are all great. I especially liked the Pyrrhuloxia. I always associate them with Phainopeplas- crested birds from the desert southwest with unpronounceable names that start with P.

Mary said...


I'd be in heaven to have visitors like you have. Baby Quail! Don't you love photographing the young ones? They're so unguarded and sweet.

Your photos are astounding. Beautiful, beautiful birds.

I need to make time to visit here more often while I'm missing my backyard birds.


bobbie said...

Congratulations, Grandma! Your pictures are beautiful, and so are the babies.

Seabrooke said...

Oh my goodness, those baby quail are so cute! I have to admit that in my travels to the western side of the continent the quail are among my favourite birds I've encountered. The rather plaintive call of the Gambell's is firmly tied to my memories of early morning in the Sonoran desert.

Anonymous said...

I love your pictures of the baby Quail. You have some wonderful bird photos here.

Thanks for visiting my site. And...I haven't read Christy. Not yet.

Anonymous said...

Great Quail Shots Kathie.
What a show off. !! ({:)

Ruth said...

The first quail picture is so interesting. It look like he is wearing a dress hat. Wonderful birds you have.

Chrissy said...

Absolutely great photos. I love the babies, I'm sure you'll make a good grandma. (Smile)

Kathryn and Ari said...

Don't you just love avian haberdashery? The cardinals, the parent quails, and how about those baby quail mohawk hats? Fabulous!

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Kathie: Wonderful bird pictures. You are a great with the camera.

Kathie Brown said...

First let me say, since no one ID'd the blackbird I'll just tell you that it is a Bronzed Cowbird.

Beth and Lynne, thank you both for visiitng my blog and commenting. Beth, yes, all these photos are from my yard. Lynne, I do love those Mohawks!

jalynn, nice to see you again. Yes, the feeders are crowded and all the parents are bringing their young to feed!

J' carl clampit, nice to meet you! I hope you capture those lifers you want. Arizona has a lot to offer as far as birding goes.

Lili and Nevada, thank you!

Jp, why thank you! The new digital makes it easy. I have loved photography since I was a kid. I hope to see some of your new photos. We are still learning to use ours.

Nina, aren't they the cutest things! This is my first time actually getting such a good look at quail babies. I'll have to come by and see the release of your salamaders!

Doug, those are quite the names, aren't they! It took me awhile to learn how to pronounce them as you can only guess by their spelling!

Mary, come by all you want. I wish you could visit in person and get your own photos. I feel so bad that you had to take down your feeders! I hope it won't be too long before they are back up. Perhaps you can go out to the wild areas around you and show us what there is to see?

Carla, Thank you! Your site is very nice and I think you would love Christy! I've wanted to visit Cumberland Gap ever since I read it over 30 years ago! I still haven't made it yet!

Roy, you made me laugh! Thanks!

Ruth, those topknots are so cute!

Chrisss, I would but they haven't been back since!

Kathryn, it's astounding!

fishing guy, thank you for dropping by and commenting.

me ann my camera said...

How very interesting I find this post. Every bird you have posted, other than a White-winged Dove, I have never seen and they are not common in my region. Your blog is a great place for a birder to visit!

Texas Travelers said...

This is so weird. We see the Bronzed Cowbird regularly when we visit the Lower Rio Grand Valley (Brownsville).
We saw the first one for our area last weekend at Hagerman NWR. Great photo. with the red eye, blue wings, and ruff neck. Not any mistaking that ID.

Love the Quail photos.

Great post as usual,

Pat - Arkansas said...

Your quail photos are wonderful! I love those little birds. Your other bird shots are great, too. What a variety you attract.

Anonymous said...

Oh I just love those quail and their cute little tophats! When I ordered my chicks this spring, I noticed that the supplier also had Gambel's quail eggs for hatching. No, I didn't order any (I don't have an incubator anyway) but it sure would be fun to see some of those little quail here in Ohio!

Lovely photos, as always. Thanks Kathie. I so love your photos!

Jackie said...

Your quail images are wonderful! Watching a family of quail is always entertaining. It's amazing to me how those little chicks start following mom right after hatching. Pretty little birds.