Being new to birding when I moved to Alberta, it seems I spent much of my first year just trying to figure out what species there were to see here and trying to figure out what they were when I saw them. The next year was spent finding some ideal birding spots away from the house without getting lost. It seems this year I've been here long enough to start noticing some trends. Two species in particular I'm noticing much more than usual are the Common Red Poll, which seem to have taken over the backyard feeder (and I'm sure will get a mention on the blog in the near future) and the Pine Grosbeak, which tend to frequent the ash trees in the front yard.
My first year here, the Pine Grosbeak didn't make much of an appearance (or at least around the house it didn't.) For the most part I'd catch a glimpse of the odd one mixed in with a group of Evening Grosbeaks. It was as if a gathering of grosbeaks decided to show up for dinner but the Pine Grosbeak didn't get the memo about what to wear for dinner attire. It's red plumage really made it stand out against the brown trees. In recent weeks I've noticed more Pines than I usually see and on my days off I can get some nice views from the master bedroom when they show up in the morning. Definitely one of the more brightly coloured birds I see around this time of year.
Here we have a pair, male and female hiding out in my neighbor's tree this morning.