Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Expanding My Domain

I'm not sure if it's the unpredictable weather or if they are upset that I finally managed to get around to hacking off a few branches from the backyard tree after it was damaged in the last big snow storm of the season, but my usual cadre of backyard visitors seem to be ignoring the feeder at the moment. I've seen next to nothing the past three days.

Fortunately, we are surrounded by a lot of green spaces and so I've gotten into the habit of bringing along my binoculars whenever we head out for a walk. This morning I grabbed them at the last minute before heading off with Lisa and the daycare crew to a park a short distance away.

Fortune smiled on me and I saw a record total of 7 species I was able to identify plus one more I'm not sure of. We saw a Robin, a Black-billed Magpie, a Red-winged blackbird, a Canada Goose, a Mallard duck, a Herring gull, all very common around here this time of year. New to my list, I can add a Common Golden Eye and a Grackle. I've seen plenty of grackles in the past but this was my first Alberta sighting and I probably would have missed it entirely if not for the binoculars as it was mixed in with the red-winged black birds. The species that got away was flying around overhead and I wasn't able to get a decent enough look to be able to identify it with confidence. I suspect it could have been a flycatcher of some sort but I'm really just grasping at straws here.

At any rate I've found some really nice places to explore as the spring migration kicks in and have plans to head out with Lisa and the kids to check out the small ponds we discovered today more thoroughly in the next few days.

One of the many robins that frequent our front trees here right out the master bedroom window.

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