About Feeding Birds in Summer..

Who knew that there are so many birds in summer coming to feeders?  Not me, that’s for sure.  I feed the birds in winter but thought that in summer there would be only House Sparrows.  Right now I am going through  at least 2 lbs of seed per day.  Little did I know the number of birds and different species that would come..besides House Sparrows there are House Finches (as above, male in breeding color), Brown-headed Cowbirds (male and female) a Red-winged Blackbird, Black-headed Grosbeak (male and female) Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, one male Goldfinch, one young Starling, these not to mention 3 squirrels feeding from seed dropped on the ground.  And also Hummingbirds, many Hummingbirds, below is one of the many:

So now I have a decision to make: husband thinks that I am doing them no favors by feeding them but I love to see and hear them in the yard.  But by providing birdseed am I harming them because they don’t have to search for their natural food? I saw a mother House Sparrow carrying a moth to her nest and that got me to thinking the birdseed feeding.

So what do you think?  is it a good idea to feed or a bad idea?  I am undecided.



One Aggressive Little Hummingbird

Here are two photos of  Rufous Hummingbird.  He takes on anyone who comes near the Hummingbird feeder while he is there.   He is the tiniest of the Hummingbirds that come to our feeder but he is surely the most aggressive.  Other species who come to the feeder are chased away when he arrives on the scene.

Apparently this little fellow migrates 3,000 miles, can you imagine?

For more information on Rufous Hummingbird, follow this link to All About Birds.


Sweet Little Fledglings

These little sparrows are fledged from the nest but they are still demanding food. I wonder how long the mom is going to feed them?  Below on the right is the sweetest baby ever but it is slow to follow mom to the feeder.. I hope that it becomes independent quickly before the crows catch him.

Below are mom on right and two of the babies, see their baby beaks?

Below is mom again and the baby who is slower at learning that things have changed and he must feed himself.

Male Brown-headed Cowbird: A Better Look at Black Beauty

This male Brown-headed Cowbird, whom I call Black Beauty, (2 photos) has become a many-times daily visitor to our bird feeder along with his mate.  I posted earlier about them but here are better photos of the male, taken yesterday.

They are not very big birds but the male can be aggressive, seen yesterday chasing a larger female Black-headed Grosbeak away from the feeder.  They do, however, co-exist peacefully with sparrows or finches at the feeder.

For more information follow the link below to All About Birds.


Black Beauty

These birds are new to me as of a few weeks ago.  They come daily to our feeder, above are male and female Brown-Headed Cowbird.  I wonder why they have such a strange name being members of the Blackbird family.  My photos do not do justice to the beautiful shiny black feathers of the male’s body nor the chocolate-brown of his head.

Below is another of the males.

for more information on the Brown-headed Cowbird, follow the link below at All About Birds.