Happy as a Lark

This past Sunday, my grandmother stopped by to see our lambs, chicks, and calves (I hope to post some pictures soon).

As she was leaving the yard, I heard a bird singing in one of the spruce trees on the south side of the house — it would sing every minute or so. The bird was very well hidden in the branches and it took me some time to find it.

When I finally was able to see it peeking through the branches, I saw it was a Lark Sparrow, which I’d never seen before and which is fairly uncommon for this area.  I ran into the house to get my camera, but the sparrow had left and I didn’t get a photo.

Lark Sparrows are more common in southern Alberta, so it was very nice to have one show up in our yard.

When I went outside yesterday morning, I heard the Lark Sparrow singing in the spruce tree again. I was able to get quite a few good photos of the bird and so far, it’s the best “Yard Bird” I’ve seen! Lark Sparrows are very beautiful and have a lovely song — I hope I get to see more soon.

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Meeting Birding Friends on the Weekend

On Sunday I had a visit from Ray and Brian, who were part of the Fur and Feathers 500 Big Year last year. They live in the southern part of the province and were passing through on a birding trip to Cold Lake. It was great to finally meet them in person and do a little bit of birding with them. In fact, I was very lucky and managed to see a life bird while I was with them, a Common Nighthawk.

Brian also brought me several boxes with some birding guides he no longer uses, and lots of back issues of Birders Journal (“the magazine for birding in Canada”, which unfortunately is now defunct, I think) and the ABA’s Birding magazine.

Ray, me, and Brian by my house,

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At the slough across the road (photo by my mother),

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A Fall Finch

I have been waiting for the wintering finches to arrive. They usually arrive in December and they are mostly redpolls. I was very surprised to see a Pine Grosbeak in October, though some have been reported in southern Alberta.

I saw this Pine Grosbeak this morning in the woods across the road from my house. The Pine Grosbeak is a Life Bird,