Sunday, February 17, 2013

Counting Birds

I have been counting birds for the annual bird count. You can find out about it at   .   I watched for several hours while sitting in the sunroom and working on the computer or reading. I have several small plastic containers and some metal hubcaps for holding water for the birds. I don't feed them as I don't want them depending on me, and because I couldn't afford to feed that flock of black birds that comes through about once a day to take their bath. We call them the dirty black birds. We have counted at least 50 of them at once but not sure how many there really are as you can't tell one from the other. Of course my favorites are the scaled quail that want to drink in containers on the ground. Most of my water containers are low enough for them except one that is about 4 feet tall for the sparrows and finches.
Black Birds - about 50      Old English Sparrows - about 10
Redheaded House Finch - about 6     Black Capped Chickadees - about 4
Ravens - 3 but we usually see about 5     Cooper's Hawk - 1 I'm sure it was the same one several times.
Roadrunner - 1
Scaled Quail - 10 I think there is more than one flock that come through but no way to tell for sure. Have seen as many as 20 in a flock but usually around 8 or 10. Of course I think that the hawks, owls, and coyotes catch them frequently. They don't fly well and depend on hiding to escape.
   Of course all those birds coming and going keep the cats out of the sunroom most of the day. They sit and crouch, and chatter, and hope that one will come flying in where they can catch it but no such luck. Poor kitties are house cats mostly as they, too, could be food for the owls, and coyotes. I saw a coyote yesterday morning right by the horse pens at 7:30 am. The dogs chased it off but it wasn't really afraid of them.

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