Sunday, April 25, 2010

25 Apr 2010

It is starting to get late in the month of April. I was watching at least 3 American Goldfinch playing and eating in my backyard the last few days and got a picture for my blog. They love to eat off the Thistle sock I have hanging near one of my trees. It seems to be molting a little. They are permanent resident birds to Northern Va.

Besides Blue Jays, Sparrows and Cardinals, there seems to be a lot of Cowbirds around this year.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

20 Apr 2010

I walked over to see if the Goose mom was still on her nest. Another day that the goose was safe. I took a wider angle shot to show how close the nest is to the path.

I also saw a Doubled-crested Cormorant which is a summer resident.

It is interesting that I am seeing so many new and different birds this year around my house and at the lake. Am I just being more observant?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

15 Apr 2010

Happy Tax Day!!

I walked over to see how the goose mom was doing. She was resting and seemed to be doing well.

On the other side of the lake, I heard a large splash but couldn't see what made it. It sounded like a big rock being thrown into the lake. The trail got a little closer to the lake and I saw a bird going right down and make another loud splash. I finally found a spot where I could get to the shore and saw 2 Ospreys circling around the lake and one of them dove again. It looked like it grabbed a fish and then took off. Supposedly they go into the water feet first, but it really looked like head first to me.

All in all a fun day to be out birding.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

11 April 2010

This information is very similar from a  few website. I was curious how long it will take the Canadian Geese eggs to hatch. Here are some answers:

How many eggs do Canada geese usually lay in one nest?
The number of eggs laid by one goose in a nest can range from 1 to 10, but the average for giant Canada geese is between 5 and 6.  The goose lay’s one egg per day.  If more than one goose is laying eggs in a nest, as sometimes occurs when geese are nesting close to each other (such as on an island), occasionally 15 or more eggs will be found in a nest. 
How long does it take the eggs to hatch?
The process of sitting on the eggs and keeping them warm so they develop properly and eventually hatch is called incubation.  The female goose begins incubating the eggs the day last egg is laid.  The goose normally incubates the eggs for 28-30 days before they hatch.

I am going to use 5 April as my starting date (although it is probably a few days earlier) so around 3 May could be the day that they hatch. I was down at the lake this morning and the nest was still there and mother goose was on the nest guarding it. 

Also took a picture of a Mourning Dove drinking out of the bird bath.  It is another permanent resident of NOVA.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

6 Apr 2010

Everyday there seems to be more and more birds showing up in NOVA either to stay for the summer or to pass through on the way up north. A goose has decided to make a nest just off of the walking trail around the lake. I hope that it makes it all the way until the eggs hatch. I am going to keep an eye on this and will put it in my blog.

I saw and got a picture of what I think is a Palm Warbler. It is a transit bird. It was hopping around on the ground and then flew up in a nearby tree.

I also saw a male Eastern Towhee on the ground kicking up dead leaves looking for insects. It has the red eye of the towhee that travels to northern states.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

1 Apr 2010

Today was a wonderous day!! It was in the low 70s without a cloud in the sky. I went out to Huntley Meadows and hit my lake on the way back. I did see another Eastern Bluebird at the meadows but the picture didn't turn out. The most interesting sight was a lister. He had glassed a bird as it went by and then wrote down on his "list" what it was and how many. But, he tried to do it so I wouldn't see him. Then when I walked by and said "hi", he just grunted. It made me chuckle.

Today was also sparrow day out at Huntley Meadows. I got a nice picture of a Song Sparrow which is a permanent resident and a Swamp Sparrow which is a winter resident.

Song Sparrow

Swamp Sparrow

I also caught a picture of an Eastern Phoebe down at the lake. It is a summer resident and is a flycatcher.