Sunday, June 23, 2013
We took a trip with friends to Grassy Hollow Visitor's Center. In addition to two life birds, we saw lots of other "mountain birds" including a few that we hadn't seen in California before. The east coast variants of junco, cowbird, chickadee, and white-breast nuthatch would frequent our New Jersey yard. It was good to see their west coast relatives.
We went to the Grassy Hollow Visitor's Center near Wrightwood, CA in hopes of seeing a Green-tailed towhee. We saw 3-4 mostly on the ground but also this one on the top of a dead tree.
Thursday, June 20, 2013
We added a pedestal dripper to keep the bird bath full and attract more birds. We were so excited that our first customer was the female hooded oriole! There is at least one pair of hooded orioles in the yard, but we hadn't seen them drink or bathe before this time. That little device was worth every penny! Not having so much luck with another bath and a solar fountain, but Chris loves to tinker with projects so maybe that one will work out well too.
Spotted Towhee Taking a bath
Spotted Towhee singing
Juvenile Spotted Towhee
We spent weeks listening to a male spotted towhee singing in the trees trying to attract a mate. At first we loved the songs. After a while, we considered taking out a personal ad for him since it didn't seem like he was having any luck. Eventually we saw two spotted towhees around at the same time, but it was very difficult for us to tell if one was female. The female looks identical except the head is more grey. We really never could distinguish between the two even when we saw them together. We sort of gave up hope, but lo and behold, there appeared a nice looking juvenile spotted towhee amongst our regular crowd. We're so proud - well, I guess the spotted towhee couple is and we just love watching them.