• Karrin
      Participant
      Chirps: 47
      I completed all 3 activities.
      • Activity 1: The Wall of Birds is really cool! I definitely want to go see it in person. It was interesting to see the size of some of the extinct birds - I can't imagine seeing something with a 20-foot wingspan overhead - but my favorite was the splendid fairywren for these reasons:
        • I love the whimsical name.
        • I love its color (bright blue).
        • My nickname is Wren, so I feel a personal connection. :-)
      • Activity 2: Knowing that most birds you see are songbirds really helps narrow down the groups. I used the opportunity to learn more about a bird I've heard several people mention lately - the junco. I looked it up in the Merlin app and immediately realized that I have been seeing them in my own backyard without ever realizing what they were.
      • Activity 3: I am not sure it's my  bird, but seeing a cardinal in the snow is a treat.
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      • L
        Participant
        Chirps: 1
        Cardinals are my favourite winter bird.  Their bright colours always liven up a dull day.  I have a pair (male and female) who come to my backyard feeders.  I think the male has been in my area for a couple of years, starting as an immature male and finally finding a mate possibly just this year.  At least I like to think it is the same bird and that he has happily found a female.  I do know that cardinals are territorial and often an area is inhabited by one pair.  Not sure of area size though.
    • Tish
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I live on the salt marsh along the coast of South Carolina. From my backyard, I can observe birds from most of the bird families (except chicken-like birds and parrots). This past week I’ve seen a pair of Hooded Mergansers, White Egrets, Ibis, Great Blue Herons, Bluebirds, Robins, Sparrows (not sure what type), Downy Woodpeckers and Red-Winged Blackbirds. My favorite bird is the Bluebird.  I have a Bluebird box and most years I watch the babies hatch and fledge. It’s so much fun observing them.  At times it can be scary because a Hawk will come into the yard and go after them.
    • Teri
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      This pictures is of the first Varied Thrush I've seen and it happened on my back deck during the Backyard Count. D9FDFADA-A7C7-4477-A7D2-4D6B6641593A
    • Alok
      Participant
      Chirps: 4
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      • Alok
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        Found this Great Egret during my walks around Coyote Hills Park on 19th Feb, 2021 who gave me company for quite some time and posed for photo ops.
    • Tisha
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      IMG_3111IMG_3114 Activity #3: I don't have a good bird photography camera so I don't have any great photos. And I find it hard to narrow down to just one favorite. There are so many that I like to watch. I really like Hummingbirds and Woodpeckers. But pictured I have a group of baby Carolina wrens, from some parents that like to nest on our porch. I like the Carolina wrens cause I think they are adorable, parents and babies. How they hop around and are so vocal too. I enjoy listening to them sing and chitter away. The other picture is a Barn swallow parent that nested on our porch at work. They were all fun to watch over the course of their nesting period. The parents were very protective. They would fly at us when we went to check the mail to try and shoo us away. Even standing at the window they were very aware of us; as you can see this parent turning their head to look at us. I loved their coloring too. As for any bird; it was awesome to watch them raise their babies from hatchlings to juveniles leaving the nest. They had 5 of them so we had a group of 7 barn swallows hanging around the porch for a little bit. :)
    • Laura
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I particularly liked the Wall of Birds activity. I began looking for what is around where I live, then at places I've visited like Peru and Costa Rica, then where my in-laws live (in TX), and so on.  The diversity of birds blows me away. Those flycatchers are amazing-looking. And the cardinal outside my window is just as stunning in his own particular way. Thanks for the opportunity to widen my view.
      • Karrin
        Participant
        Chirps: 47
        I agree about the Wall of Birds. I want to see it in person, but I'm wondering how they share all of that cool information - maybe another phone app?
    • Patricia
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      3 Birds I have looked at this week in 3 different groups. 1.     This winter in an effort to identify my different sparrows I made a great discovery! The white throated (white-striped) sparrow. They are the most adorable little song birds. He/she both look similar. Easy to spot them with their noticeable beautiful white throat, bright yellow spot kind of above/between each eye (lore). Strips alternate black and white on the top of their heads; also their chest are solid gray (differing from other sparrows).  For such a little bird they have a loud might song of “Old Sam Peabody Peabody Peabody” or “Oh Canada Canada Canada”. Simply a great find for me. 2.     Brown Thrasher. How I love to watch these birds. Very easy to identify with their colors on their backs a rusty brown (rufous) and striped chest. Their yellow eyes are always looking around as they forage for food. Their heads flip back in forth searching for just the right tasty nugget or bug.  They sing the most beautiful repeating notes like, “No Fear No Fear, Yes Yes, Who’s This Who’s This, or many other calls as they may know 1,100 song types. 3.     Crow. I have a family of 6 that visit my feeders every day. 5 American crows and one fish crow. I have trained them to come when I put out food. Last year I rang a bell and this year I just knock on my stainless steel bowl. They may have some alpha thing going on as a crow will come, call to the others, when more come they will eat.  They have a vivacious appetite and love many foods.  This year I make them, what I call peanut butter sandwiches. I break up bread in a large bowl then pour heated peanut butter over it & stir well.  Yum! They come & fill their beaks so full they overflow all around. So cute. They take their breakfast somewhere else to finish eating.  Not gone long, they always come back for more. My favorite bird that comes to my woodland yard is the Pileated Woodpecker.  He is big, beautiful, and I love how they circle my trees looking for food.
    • Penelope
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I am requesting some clarification in the Activity suggestion #2:  "Find birds...from three different groups that you learned about in this lesson."  In reviewing the lesson, I do see more than 3 groupings. Which 3 groups of birds is this activity referring to?  Thanks in advance for your reply.
      • Alok
        Participant
        Chirps: 4
        Yeah, I have the same confusion.
      • Elizabeth
        Bird Academy
        Yes, you learned about more than three groups in the lesson. For this activity, choose any three of those groups that you are interested in. You do not have to choose specific ones.
    • Andrea
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I am picking birding back up after a long hiatus while I raised my daughter. Now I'm nearing retirement and wanting to renew my old interest. My favorite birds depends on the season, in Summer it is the Ruby Throated Hummingbirds that come by the dozens to my feeders. Winter it's the Cardinals in their beautiful red. But how can you narrow it down?? So many beautiful birds to see and discover. I also moved further out in the country and am surrounded by acres of National Forest so attracting them to my yard with native plantings is my goal. Three favorite groups are Woodpeckers, TreeCreepers especially nuthatches, and Buntings especially the Indigo Bunting.
    • Shannon
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      So far our favorite is the purple finch - so beautiful!
    • William
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      In the past week I have seen over a dozen buzzards roosting in trees and circling overhead waiting for their turn at a fresh racoon carcus, and the flocks of blackbirds chattering and the lifting off in mass flightand the seeing and hearing the distinctive pelated woodpecker.  Great to see all these birds surviving with all the snow on the ground in Northern New Jersey.
    • Genie
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I have a beautiful Scrub Jay visiting my backyard It just dropped in for an afternoon bath, so fun to watch it shaking its feathers and dunking in the water. Then it flew up to a chair top to dry off and shake more. I can easily see the birds from my bedroom window and find it so enjoyable to watch them. I also have many hummingbirds coming to two feeders I have out for them, what a joy to watch these happy, speedy birds and listen to their chatter. I feel very fortunate to be able to watch these sweet birds during this challenging sheltering time. A few moments of sanity just watching them!!
    • Mechelle
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I am a new bird watcher.  I have always enjoyed them but didn’t become excited about them until I met someone else that was crazy about birds.  He’s the kind of guy that doesn’t just hem and haw over a flutter.  His dramatic gasps and hysterical commentary about the birds made it such an adventure.  He always looked like he rolled out from under a bar stool of some tropical island and into the brush, which of course added to his flair.  He only ever carried his binoculars and a hat to hold in his Brillo pad hair (his words, not mine).  Can you describe a person that got you excited about bird watching?  What was he/she like?  What did they do that made you curious for more knowledge? What tools were used? Thanks
    • Michelle
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      Everyone takes such great pictures! I'm in central Georgia near Atlanta, and as we come out of the cold snap of the past couple of days, I'm struck by how many goldfinches are in the area; I've been watching for a couple of years but hadn't seen so many until now. My favorite area birds are the towhee, which I actually rarely see but I like hearing the call and knowing one's around. The red-bellied woodpeckers can be bullies but they're always around and I enjoy seeing them. My favorite bird on the Wall of Birds is the osprey; I started watching some nests on webcams and that's what got me into birdwatching. They're phenomenal birds - migrating thousands of miles twice a year; always returning home to the same nest and same wintering area. Birds from three different groups in this lesson in my area: Cardinals (finch family), Starlings (blackbird family), Canada goose (waterfowl family Anitidae).
    • Kristen
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      Bird Pic We moved in late August from a very busy neighborhood to a quiet country road. We have many of the same bird species we used to enjoy at our previous house. One of my favorites is the red-bellied woodpecker seen on our feeder. One the ground is a dark-eyed junco. We enjoy seeing these 2 feathered friends every day. It's interesting to note that we no longer see cardinals in our yard. Our old house is less than 10 miles away but our yard is much more open with fewer trees and shrubs. I'm wondering if that is why...
    • Molly
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I live along the coast in southern Maine just outside the state’s biggest city. Since working from home for almost the last year, I’ve been impressed by the diversity of birds especially along my neighborhood walk that hugs a small coastal bay. I’ve seen hummingbirds, woodpeckers, a snowy egret, and most recently a bald eagle (not uncommon in Maine). It’s inspired me to take up birdwatching! There are many ducks, sea gulls, and Canada geese on the water’s edge. Lately a small black and white duck bobbing in the water has caught my eye. I’ve seen them in groups of 6 or 8 away from the other birds. I’m thinking it’s a bufflehead or a goldeneye based on the online Audubon guide and a new bird book. Any tips on solving this mystery? I’ll try to snap a picture soon!
    • Clark
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      This is so dang fun, I can’t stand it!  Steller jays coming to my cracked corn. It is such a  BEAUTIFUL  bird.
    • Jessica
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      • I vote CardinalDSC_0779Cardinals frequent my feeder and on this particular day I was in awe by how beautiful they looked against the white snow. 
    • Gino
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      IMG_0020 copy Activity 1: I voted for the Carolina Wren from the Wall of Birds because we have really cute couple that lives in the backyard in NW Ohio. They have been frequenting our suet feeder in the cold weather. Activity 2: We chose 3 birds- the Peregrine Falcon, the Common Raven, and the Clark's Grebe. In order, the Peregrine Falcon's are raptors, the Common Raven it doesn't fit into any of the simple groups described, but would be most similar to the crow that is grouped with song birds, and the Clark's Grebe is water fowl. Activity 3: This is photo of a goldfinch. I recently purchased a finch feeder and within 1 week a small group of gold finches were visiting daily. It is winter, so their feathers are not as vibrant as during breeding season.
    • Karen
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      Back in September, we moved to a 5-acre mountain property in the foothills outside Denver.  The birds were here to greet us and we have watched the changing populations of songbirds, ducks, owls, and hawks that share this land with us. I'm eager to learn as much as I can.  We watched a hilarious exchange of a Clark's Nutcracker snitching pinecones from a very irate Pine Squirrel.  Heard the crows making a racket one afternoon and finally went to investigate. A Great Horned Owl was calmly watching them all, and us, from his roost in a huge, old Ponderosa Pine tree.  We have hawks, Red  Tail and Harris, that hunt in the elk meadow and we've dubbed one tree as 'hawk tree' that we frequently see them scanning the area from.  Our 2 feeders bring round the little chickadees, juncos, and nuthatches with the Steller and Gray jays getting in on it also.  The Gray Jays (Camp Robbers) wait on our deck railing for us to lay out some blueberries for them.  We are told they will bring their babies with them to visit in the Spring. The whole property is alive with activity all the time. As spring arrives, we'll be watching for the return of the mallards to our pond and hummingbirds.  I've got a lot to learn!
    • As part of the Great Backyard Bird Count, I was able to identify a Downy Woodpecker and Hairy Woodpecker.  I have an affinity for woodpeckers.  I see Downy Woodpeckers often at my feeders.  Today I saw both a Hairy and Downy at the same time.  This allowed me to really compare the two species.  I am now much more confident in distinguishing these two birds.
    • Joe
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
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    • Joe
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      More pics from the Great Weekend Bird Count...E36B613C-F44C-4720-B258-C049F022F6AB37A2CC43-2A95-42EB-A875-C92E8D876F72931A3114-14B9-4FB1-AF0E-84A141AEF516
    • Joe
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      My favorite part about the Wall of Birds was listening to the artist describe how she paints each bird.  What a talent!  Found 14 different birds during this weekend’s Great Backyard Bird Count which definitely covered Activity 2.  Probably my favorite bird so far is the Whitebreasted Nuthatch-fascinating to watch it feed upside down, and it seems to be the friendliest of the backyard birds-they don’t always fly away when you are nearby and often will land close by when attending the feeders.D4B3881D-B2A3-4939-BC34-9F5BB496E47854AB6BF2-4953-45C0-91DC-2B09F01EC228
    • Tisha
      Participant
      Chirps: 5
      IMG_3116IMG_3113IMG_3118 Some birds groups found in my neighborhood: Downy woodpecker - doing his best impersonation of a hummingbird - group woodpeckers, I believe the next photo was a great horned owl but unsure - group Owls, Lastly a Ruby throated hummingbird - group hummingbirds.