Friday, January 4, 2008

Foul-Weather Feathered Friends

Friday, January 4, 2008

This week's big snow has kept the kids out of school until today.

Hello Cabin Fever Hotline?

The weather has also brought in a bunch of bird species that normally only visit the feeders when the weather is horrible. Among these foul-weather transients is a big male common grackle in his iridescent best winter plumage.

You can see from this photo why this species used to be called the purple grackle. Grackles are really beautiful birds, if you look at them carefully. Too bad their reputation as agricultural pests, feeder hogs, and marauding nest robbers is what sticks in most peoples' minds.

I'm still hoping these winter storm fronts will coax some common redpolls down to southeastern Ohio. They have been seen in other parts of the state. I'll be keeping one eye on the feeders this weekend.


On January 4, 2008 at 5:02 PM Onedia Hayes Sylvest said...

Bill, I love Grackles as well. They visit us for a month or so in spring and fill our yard with irridesence twice a day and then disappear . I also love other birds with bad reps like woodpeckers and vultures (who are georgeous in flight) .


On January 4, 2008 at 7:45 PM Anonymous said...

Hi Bill, I have enjoyed your blog
from the moment I found it. Have to
comment on the grackle, though.
From the coloring, it looks more
like the "bronzed" form we have here in Minnesota.
Hap in New Hope (MN)

On January 5, 2008 at 3:23 AM Marvin said...

I hope you get your common redpolls down. I'm plenty happy just looking at your photos of grackles, though.

On January 6, 2008 at 8:32 AM Mary said...

Bill - I had the grackles in the spring/early summer. Feeder hogs - yes, but I always admired their shining color. Now I'm being visited by Starlings - the other gansta bird that I can really do without.

On January 7, 2008 at 10:23 AM Rondeau Ric said...

We have 50 in our yard and maybe one hoary.
Come on up for a visit.