The other day was kind of gloomy and overcast so we didn’t go out birding in the morning. Karen had a luncheon to attend so I had leftovers for lunch. I wandered into our three-season room which looks out onto our backyard, where something caught my eye in the River Birch tree overhanging the patio and it looked small – warbler sized. We don’t get too many warblers in our backyard so I was curious and grabbed my bins and camera. Sure enough, there flitting around in the tree was a Magnolia Warbler.
In the fall the Magnolia Warblers are a bit drabber (particularly in the head); as you can see, it caught a big juicy bug. The Maggie must have found lots to eat in the tree because it stayed there at least 45 minutes! In fact, it was soon joined by a second Magnolia Warbler.
After about 5 minutes of watching the two of them I decided to do an eBird Checklist and to spend some time watching the birds in my backyard from inside the three-season room. I opened the sliding glass door all the way but I made sure I stayed back from the threshold a couple of feet to keep the end of my camera lens from reaching outside and possibly scaring the birds off.
As I continued to search my backyard I saw more and more birds. Two White-throated Sparrows were beneath the bushes along the back of our property scratching for bugs (first sighting of this species this fall). I saw something flutter in high up in my neighbor’s locust tree and saw a male Redstart. My attention was drawn back to my yard as another bird came into the River Birch. It was high up in the tree so it was harder to spot it through the leaves but eventually it showed itself to be a Tennessee Warbler!
Seeing three warbler species may not seem like much, but for our backyard it was a first. Warblers aren’t attracted to the seed in our feeders so we just don’t get many of them, but here in the space of an hour I saw three of them.
Of course there were other birds back there, too. House Sparrows were scarce during July and August but they have reappeared in force in late September and early October. This young one was searching for the bird feeders – we had taken them down to wash them to help prevent the spread of avian flu.
I enjoyed birding my right in my backyard for almost an hour. I continued to get more species flying in and I continued to take more pictures – until they all suddenly disappeared. More pics, including why the disappeared, tomorrow in this special two-part Mike’s Monday (and Tuesday) Pics.
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