Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Bird watching *update*

We have been in a bird watching mood. The giant, silver maple that sits right outside the double window in our learning room has afforded us plenty of opportunity.

We have started our very first nature journal. (Bear with me, please, this is new for us!) Our first entry was the American Robin. Yesterday, we had the pleasure of seeing what we believe to be Carolina Wrens and (thanks to the helpful identification from Dawn and Jennifer) a bunch of Cedar Waxwings. They were amazing! The wrens flitted from the fence to the ground, but unfortunately the Cedar Waxwings stayed in the highest branches so we could only get up close and personal via digital zoom.

Until I can get to the book store and/or library to scope out a good field guide we are using the Internet, Texas Parks and Wildlife resources and the generosity of forced mentors online friends to identify what we see. We are also using this coloring book for our journal while trying to include information on what the bird eats and a bit about their nests. I am sure it is very crude compared to what the more experienced families create, but this is our first pancake, so to speak.

It was also very cloudy when they came to call. The pictures don't show their lovely coloring very well. The children agreed they looked like they were wearing black masks . Husband and The Professor called them "Ninja Birds"!

Thankfully they left before our watchman took his post on the tower. We wouldn't have wanted a confrontation!This guy has been showing up just about every day to sit right there and peek at the world going by. He looks out into the front yard at about the same spot in the fence that has a "window" we installed as a look out post for our dog. The dog is no longer with us so it seems that this guy has taken his place. Oh...not to worry! Our beloved pet has only passed from these owners to the next--- literally! He is being pampered and spoiled in his old age by a nice young man who loves dogs very much and had even re-arranged his work schedule to be better able to go for walks and romp in the park. It was heartbreaking to give him up, but old dogs don't always get along with young children and we wanted him to enjoy his remaining years. (He had actually started refusing to come inside, because of the noise and fuss the children made, and you just can't leave a dog outside all day in the kind of heat we endure during the summer.)

*Updated March 14* My apologies for the haziness but all of our windows have screens!
This cute little Carolina Wren was posing for a photo shoot right outside my laundry room window. He twittered and tweeted this morning while I folded towels. I felt just like Cinderella!

Giving us his best tough guy face!


  1. I just love, love, love cedar waxwings!

  2. We do too (now that we know what they are)! The kids have started called them the ninja birds but I think they look like little banditos. I feel so silly sometimes because we are just now embarking on this "suburban safari" and making discoveries that others have been studying for years.

  3. We are bird nuts at our house too. I have bookmarked lots of bird links, to listen to calls and research habitats, but this is our fav for identification.
    Just click on "Click to find your bird" and through a series of questions you narrow it down to the right bird (hopefully!).

  4. Oh, thank you, Barbara! What a great resource! I am bookmarking that one for sure!


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