We now take a break from our regularly scheduled liver talk, to discuss: birds. One of the best perks of having an office at home, that looks out over the backyard, is all the birdwatching I get to do. I mean, I do some work, but this time of year it’s so fun to stare out the window a bit at all the urban wildlife. Yesterday, a whole flock of starlings descended on the back yard and pecked at the ground before taking off in a mini murmuration.

A small sampling of the starlings that hung out in the yard today.
A small sampling of the starlings that hung out in the yard yesterday.

I also saw a robin and got worried about a repeat of last year’s robin ‘issue’. Seems that in the spring, robins get super territorial. They like to hang out in our bushes which surround the house. This little guy was doing his thing, surveying his territory when he saw his reflection in the basement window and became convinced that another robin was mocking him. He starting throwing himself against the glass, beak first. It took me a while to figure out what the tapping noise was. I did what I could to talk him out of this behavior, even going so far as standing in the basement looking out at him, yelling, pleading with him to stop. To no avail. I finally taped some brown paper to the outside of the window, but he was still entranced. I took a video of him checking out the side of the glass with a screen, he couldn’t see his reflection, but he was still very suspicious. “That damn bird is in there! He’s mocking me!”

Finally, I thought I saw a yellow-bellied sapsucker. Which, by the way, is my new insult of choice. He hopped all over our maple tree, pecking at the bark, and I guess, sucking sap? Then he perched on a branch for a while. I looked him up in my bird book earlier, but now that I’m looking again, I was wrong. I think I got so excited about the name, yellow-bellied sapsucker, that I had a lapse in judgement. It was an adult downy woodpecker. I watched him for a while, so amazed by the bright red plumage set against the black and white. Man, birds have got style in spades. I didn’t see him leave, but I hope he comes and visits again.

Some kind of woodpecker/sapsucker.
An adult Downy Woodpecker. Who looks to be dabbling in some artisanal sap sucking. Damn hipster birds.

Oh and here’s a bonus squirrel shot! Can’t let the birds get all the attention.

Nibble, nibble.
Nibble, nibble.

2 Replies to “Birdwatching”

  1. The Robin video cracked me up. Poor little guy! I’m really into birds lately too. Is this something that happens when you hit your thirties? You suddenly become a bird nerd? Glad you have some friends to keep you company while you’re working away.

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