My husband and I have had bird feeders up since winter, but right now feels like an especially magical time for watching birds. Spring migration and nesting have brought new birds to our backyard, and in the last few weeks, hummingbirds have returned.
Before I share a few photos with you of our nearest neighbors these days, I wanted to alert you to an important birding day coming up this Saturday, May 9: Global Big Day. On Global Big Day, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology has asked all of us across the globe to spend a little time bird watching and reporting.
If you can spare even a few minutes—either staring out your window or walking around somewhere outside—the lab would like for you to report what birds you see and hear. Their site also provides wonderful resources to help you identify birds, in case you’re not exactly sure what you’re seeing.
My husband set up backyard bird feeders this winter, and we’ve had a steady stream of gray birds: juncos, chickadees, titmice, nuthatches. While I’m happy to see them visit the feeders, I’ve been missing the splash of red of cardinals.
Finally, on a miserable winter’s day, I glanced outside and saw that yearned-for color.
A male cardinal waiting near the feeder
She braces in the wind and snow.
Our feeder isn’t ideal for cardinals. I hadn’t realized the perch arms were too short for them. But every so often now, the cardinals pay us a visit. Because the juncos and nuthatches spit out other seeds looking for their favorites, the cardinals don’t leave hungry.
I’ll have to add another feeder, though, as I want these favorite winter guests to feel welcome.
What winter guests do you long to welcome to your home?