Saturday, February 14, 2015

See, Share, Save Birds

The Weather Channel loves stormy weather. They send meteorologists all over the country to stand out in the wind, rain and snow up to their arm-pits, and the last month has been just heaven for them. Today, the Weather Channel predicted 20% chance of snow here in Kentucky, supported by a blue blob on the radar.
 Most folks think of February 14 as Valentine's Day, but this weekend is also the Great Backyard Bird Count, during which birders around the world count the birds they see, either from the comfort of their kitchens or out on the trail, and submit that data to Scientists need data to analyze, but gathering it is a time consuming process. Besides, birders always like another reason to see and count birds.
A little snow, of course, never really stops true birders, so after my PowerPoint presentation about common Kentucky birds, a dedicated group headed out into the horizontal snow at Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve to see what they could find. I'll confess, I wimped out and stayed behind to do my counting from the warmth of the indoor bird blind. After all, birds at the feeders deserve to be counted too, right?
Don't know why this Junco decided to perch in a tree. All his friends stayed on the ground looking through the seeds scattered beneath the feeders by other birds.
They were joined by other winter visitors such as this White-crowned Sparrow. It was a good opportunity to show our other birding friends the difference between White-crowned...
...and White-throated Sparrows, another winter visitor. They can be confusing for beginners, or anyone who doesn't look carefully. It snowed and blowed all the way home, and the sun came out as we pulled into the garage. I think I'll stretch out for a nap now.

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