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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Sparrows

Over the last few years, I have been studying sparrows, a rather undramatic group of birds that most people lump together. I have found a couple of good places to see different species. Yesterday there were white throated sparrows scuffling in the leaves on my patio, looking for sunflowers knocked out of the feeder by the possums and raccoons.

Later I saw a number of white throats at Lafayette Trace. There are large open fields along the creek there that have some bare trees around. This intersection of habitats is normally full of sparrows. I saw field, tree, song sparrows as well as the white throats. I can stand on the culvert there and they fly all around me. I have seen swamp, savannah and fox sparrows there, often so close I could not use my binoculars. Another bonus has been a couple of times I got a brief glimpse of eagles there as well. This spot has lots of weedy food sources. One of the best sightings was a fox sparrow last year. They are only around for a short time during migration. There other sparrows are usually around all winter. They will soon be joined by the beautiful white crowned sparrows. I saw them last week, but not today.

I spent the rest of the day at the shop working on 8x10 picture frames, app ing the willow trim from willows I cut from a ditch near sulphur Springs on the way to Summit Lake. There were few ducks there on Monday. Coming storm fronts from the nort should brined more down. There was a large raft of coots that were tightly grouped. It was interesting to hear how loud they were as they were feeding in the shallow. Their movements all combined to make a distinctive sound on this rare windless day. A few least grebes were hanging out.
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