Monday, January 10, 2011

Snow brings out the birds

More snow this weekend brought more birds to my feeders. Even the usual birds are less cautious or fearful when it’s snowing. My thought is that they go into a mode where they try to expend less energy, perhaps because they are less sure where their next meals are coming from.

I’ve seen eagles act like that, holding to their perches when I walk right underneath the tree they are on. Flying takes a lot of energy, and birds are willing to put up with humans or other activity that they wouldn’t ordinarily put up with when they are conserving energy. Since the big birds act that way, why not the littler ones too? And that inclination certainly makes getting photos easier!

The temperature has remained stubbornly below freezing for some days now. The wind that accompanies the temperature is what really bothers me. Yesterday, I wore long underwear, heavier pants and snow pants on my lower half. My upper half had a flannel shirt, heavy sweater and over top of all was my down parka. I still shivered whenever the wind kicked up, which it seemed to do all day. Inside the cabin I keep the temperature at 62 or 63 degrees during the day, which feels plenty warm and comfortable to me. Of course, there’s no wind in there.

In case you were wondering, my photo today is of a female red-bellied woodpecker, a regular and common visitor to my feeders. The species is not well-named, as even with a photo that looks more or less right at the bird’s belly, you won’t see red. The males have a rosy wash between their legs. That’s about as close to a red belly as any of them have. The woodpecker was named by someone holding a collected or shot bird in their hand. That’s about the only way you’ll see anything resembling a red belly on one.

4 comments:

Woodswalker said...

Lovely woodpecker photo! I agree that this species could use a better name.

am said...

Beautiful photo!

There is snow and ice here, too, though it will not be long before the rains return. It's about 63 degrees inside my tiny condominium home that overlooks Scudder Pond. That feels comfortable to me as well.

Kind wishes always,
am

Carolyn H said...

Woodswalker: How about Red-crested woodpecker? Redheaded woodpecker is alredy taken.

am: Thanks! More snow expected her tomorrow night. As long as it's not ice, I can deal with it.

Cathy said...

How about carrot head or fire top.

I went out to brush off the snow of teh deck and front porch. That wind was annoying. if it wasn't windy, would have taken a walk.

So ready for the snow, I'm getting 4-8 inches.