Feathers on Friday

If you would like to join me for my Feathers on Friday meme, please put the link to your blog post in the comments and I’ll add the link to my post.

The American Goldfinches are still around and enjoying the black-oil sunflower in our feeders,


More Feathers on Friday Posts:

Blueberries and Ospreys

Last week, my parents and I headed up to Moose Lake to pick up my brothers from 4H camp. The landscape around the lake is quite different from home as the lake area is part of the northern boreal forest. The habitat around the lake includes paper birch, poplars, jack pines, white spruce, sand dunes, and lots of wild blueberries!


There were quite a few of other berry pickers in the woods, but there were lots of berries go around. My family picked three ice cream pails of blueberries and so far, my mom has made jam, and a blueberry crumb cake, and I made blueberry-cream muffins.


There weren’t very many birds in the woods, but there were quite a few squirrels,


This squirrel was nibbling on a pine cone,


More blueberries,


I was walking through the woods and came across this active Osprey nest. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a photo of the Ospreys on the nest as they flew away as I approached, but I watched them circle the nest for quite some time,


A close-up of the very large nest,


The Ospreys were a Year Bird for me, putting my 2014 Year and Alberta lists at 162 species,


There was a flock of Black-capped Chickadees and Yellow-rumped Warblers feeding in the the pines. There were also a few small songbirds mixed in with the chickadees and Yellow-rumped Warblers that I wasn’t able to identify as they were difficult to see in the trees.

Here’s my eBird checklist from our adventure of blueberry picking.

Here’s one of the three Dark-eyed Juncos that were feeding in the low shrubs,


Some of the beautiful trees that surround Moose Lake,


Birding News #80

:: A US national wildlife protection group, the Center for Biological Diversity, plans to sue two federal agencies for failing to protect the federally Endangered Yuma Clapper Rail from being harmed at industrial-scale solar power projects in California.

:: San Francisco’s planning department has launched a program to document, with the help of volunteers, the number of birds that die by crashing into windows in an effort to reduce such collisions.

:: The US Fish & Wildlife Service is participating in a groundbreaking study of shorebird migration patterns, using cutting-edge technology such as nano tags (lightweight radio transmitters) instead of the traditional bands to track the birds and record their data.

:: A new study is making use of pollen analysis on migrating birds‘ heads to see where the species are taking breaks from migration to refuel, and what food sources they are using, and shows that commercial and garden tree species might be more important as a food source for migrating birds than previously thought.

Great posts in birding blogs this week:

:: From Andrew at Birding Dude: Annual Shorebird Festival at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge

:: From Wallace at Our Florida JournalConfusion In The South

:: From Mia at On Wing Photography: A White Ibis and the reflections from mangroves

:: From Sharon at BirdchickBirdFair: Produces, Passion and Conservation 

:: From Rick at the ABA BlogDo You Remember Your First Rufous Hummingbird?

:: From Maureen at Hipster BirdersHoJo Birding



Feathers on Friday

If you would like to join me for my Feathers on Friday meme, please put the link to your blog post in the comments and I’ll add the link to my post.

Here’s a comparison photo of a Lesser and Greater Yellowlegs I took earlier this week (the Greater is in the back with the Lesser in the front).,


More Feathers on Friday Posts:

Birding News #79

Scientists report that the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster caused genetic damage, a decline in the population, and other changes to the birds, insects, and plants in the area.

DDT continues to kill birds in a Michigan town.

The misunderstood and maligned Magpie

Archaeologists have discovered that toward the end of his life, King Richard III apparently ate more water birds — such as swans, cranes, herons, and egrets — and drank more wine.

A New Jersey airport has found that letting the weeds grow deters birds from gathering, and so lowers the risk of bird strikes, and an Ohio airport is doing something similar, planting tall prairie grasses.

US Fish & Wildlife Service officials are searching for the person who shot at least one Osprey and one Barred Owl, both species of which are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. An adult male Osprey was shot in the wing and had to be euthanized; he was the father of two hungry chicks discovered several days later one of jumped 60 to 80 feet from its nest, into traffic, and died. The mother osprey’s body was later found nearby, and officials also believe it was shot.

A pair of pigeons interrupted the recent Detroit Tigers vs. Pittsburgh Pirates baseball game.

The US Fish & Wildlife Service is proposing to designate 546,335 acres in nine western states as critical habitat for the Yellow-billed Cuckoo, now under consideration as a Threatened Species.

Nudists are scaring off the birds at a small Florida island wildlife refuge.

Great posts in birding blogs this week:

:: From Noah at The ABA Blog: Cell Phone Bird Photography

:: From Alex at Flight of the Scrub-Jay: Late July on Cape Cod

:: From Julie at Birding is Fun: The Midwest Woodpecker Drill Team

:: From Alex at Nemesis Bird: Alcids of the Olympic Peninsula

:: From Sharon at Birdchick: BirdFair Bound & A Collins App

:: From Nicholas at Hipster Birders: Of Hawks and Hummers

:: From Josh at Ontario Birds and Herps: Yellow-crowned Night-Heron in Toronto

Feathers on Friday

If you would like to join me for my Feathers on Friday meme, please put the link to your blog post in the comments and I’ll add the link to my post.

One evening this week, I watched this Eastern Kingbird gleaning insects from a barbed wire fence near our house,


More Feathers on Friday Posts:

Bird News #78

:: The Audubon Society is looking for volunteers to monitor its three web cams on Seal Island, Maine, a National Wildlife Refuge in outer Penobscot Bay, to contribute data for a project scientists hope will help save Atlantic puffins in the state from starvation.

:: The California Clapper Rail has been renamed Ridgway’s Rail, the American Ornithologists’ Union announced recently, after a DNA examination showed that the species is more closely related to Mexico’s Aztec Rail than to its East Coast namesake, the Clapper Rail.

:: A visit to the new Wild Bird Fund Center for injured birds, on Manhattan’s Upper West Side; more about the center here, if you happen to be in the neighborhood.

:: Alaska biologist Julie Hagelin made her own bird decoy with a 3D printer, to help in her research to save the Olive-sided Flycatcher, which is mysteriously declining throughout most of its range in North America.

:: Surveys for the Atlas of the Breeding Birds of Ontario revealed an unexpected result: volunteer citizen scientists over the age of 50 weren’t as proficient as younger volunteers (those under the age of 40), when it came to detecting 13 of the 43 songbird species, and interestingly the lack of proficiency is not related to hearing loss.

:: Migrant families in Baltimore are planting flowers and shrubs in a park to feed and shelter migratory birds as part of the Patterson Park Audubon Center’s Bird Ambassadors program.

:: Actress Jane Alexander is a keen birder, talking to The New York Times about her passion.

:: Workers at the archaeological site at Gorham’s Cave, Gibraltar, where Neanderthals lived for nearly 100,000 years, have uncovered evidence of a diet more varied than originally thought — a cache of Rock Dove bones with tooth marks, cuts from stone tools, and signs of charring, perhaps created when the meat was left to roasted over a fire.

:: United Airlines working with the Houston Airport System at Bush Intercontinental Airport last month poisoned and killed hundreds of birds with Avitrol, as part of a “bird abatement project” that animal rights groups have called cruel and inhumane.

:: The US Fish & Wildlife Service postponed the New Jersey Institute of Technology’s drone testing at the US Coast Guard Training Center in Cape May from last month to November, in order to protect the threatened Piping Plovers and Red Knots that migrate to the coastal area in the summer in the summer.

Great posts in birding blogs this week:

:: From Shyloh at beakingoff: Yukon birding at Swan Lake

:: From Sarah for The EyrieWhat to Do When You Feel Under the Weather at Bird Camp

:: From Pat at Bird CanadaWelcome to Prince Edward Island Birding!

:: From Kathleen at birdworthySunrise Stakeout

:: From Laurence at Butler’s BirdsBro, Do You Even Pish???

:: From Nick at The BirdistInquiring Minds Want To Know: Answering Google Questions About Birds

:: From Kathie at Kathie’s BirdsA Summer’s Day at Reid State Park