• Kara
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      At first I thought the only bird groups I'd be able to identify in my neighborhood were songbirds, but then I realized I saw a blue heron and (what I think was) a sandpiper by a nearby river, and just yesterday I saw a female downy woodpecker. My current favorite bird is a wood thrush, because now I have been able to identify which bird makes those lovely, haunting chords in the woods. I was very excited when my new binoculars helped to fade out some tree branches to help me spot one singing! My current goal, however, is to spot a kestrel. I agree with the comment below that I struggle to identify the "fliers" as well.
    • Jennifer
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      ED1F9FA7-9A38-4556-A280-795A8288A55EI saw a goldfinch yesterday at my feeder. This spring we’ve also seen male rose breasted grosbeak several times. Photo of him here
    • Eleanor
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I would like to learn how to identify the "fliers" that I see every morning here in Boston.  Flying high in small groups, obviously catching insects, and chirping the entire time.  They never come low enough for me to see their color, and they never seem to land, so how in the world do you identify them?  They have the wing shape that I think of as a swift, or possibly a nightjar.  I can't tell how big they are because they are flying so high.  Does anyone know what bird this is?  Or have a suggestion for how to tell?  I'm sure anyone else looking up at in the Boston morning sky must see them every day too.
    • Patrick
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      sage grouseMy favorite bird of all time is the Sage Grouse. I have never seen one in person, but I have watched multiple documentaries on these creatures. The way these birds strut an live is amazing.
    • Benita
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      In picking a few of my favorite birds, I chose the yellow warbler from the warbler category, the painted bunting from the finch group and the Western blue bird in the Other group. I love to see these colorful examples of songbirds.  I watched a yellow warbler today, as a matter of fact, and many Oklahoma birders are snapping fantastic pics of the painted buntings.  We have an abundance of Eastern blue birds, but I have never seen a Western one, maybe someday.
    • Barbara
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      IMG_2743 The Mallard ducks and their babies in my area have been so much fun to observe. Canada Goose pairs, cardinals, blue jays, and others have been present. I enjoyed beginning to observe shapes/size and then narrow down to other characteristics to identify various birds on my walks.
    • Erica
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      My bird identification story relevant to this lesson: This afternoon I was looking outside and saw an unfamiliar bird at the birdbath. Before I looked away to get my phone and open up the Merlin app, I made myself look at all the characteristics that I thought might help me identify it. How long is the beak (short and thin), how long is the tail (medium), what is it doing (drinking water, then hopping on the ground), what distinctive markings does it have (a black cap, otherwise it was all gray), and how big is it (a little bigger than a sparrow). I believe it was a Gray Catbird. I've never seen one before! I live right in the city (Minneapolis) and currently near a lot of construction. I'm amazed that any birds take me up on the offer of birdseed and water, much less new and different birds now and then.
    • Aaron
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      My favorite birds around here are Painted Bunting, Peregrine Falcon, and Wood Duck.Screen Shot 2020-05-18 at 5.24.43 PMScreen Shot 2020-05-18 at 5.25.20 PMScreen Shot 2020-05-19 at 12.30.22 PM
    • Marva
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      My favorite bird is the Rose Breasted Grosbeak. They come by my house every year during the first two weeks in May. I love the males' coloring with the bright red marking on his chest, contrasted with the white and black feathers on the rest of his body. And the female is brown in color with streaks of lighter tan. She has a little light line over her eye that looks like eye liner. She is just beautiful. DSC09942
    • Craig
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      BCC near foot Activity 3: Living in northern Michigan, the black-capped chickadees keep me company all-year 'round. I can feed them from my hand during the winter feeding flock periods and even though they are breaking into their nesting territories, a few still bless me with close encounters from time to time.
    • Jamie
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Activity 2: Since spending all the time at home staring out at the tree near my kitchen window, I've seen so many new birds. There was a male American Robin hanging out on my deck, strutting his stuff for awhile and stealing dead plant fibers from my garden. There are a lot of regular Cardinals that come to visit. Not too long ago I saw medium sized songbird with a very pretty chirp and a yellow-orange chest, that I guessed was a Baltimore Oriole and the a similar-sized grey-brown bird with spots on his white chest, gobbling up the mayflies. That was a Swainson's Thrush. Can't wait to learn more about all the birbs!
    • Sommy and Chris
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I live in a cloud forest in costa rica we see motmots a lot in our backyard.Screen Shot 2020-05-19 at 8.07.22 AM  
    • Gerry
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      E6282EF2-7D21-4BB1-9009-B633499DFE30Each morning while I have coffee we are visited by this oriole
      • Aaron
        Participant
        Chirps: 16
        Where do you live?
      • Cathy
        Participant
        Chirps: 45
        So cute.  What a nice way to start the day.
    • Susan
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      7759858C-4355-4615-8B87-7577D4A30CC5409B157D-AB72-4560-A416-4596F78B35288699E76E-803D-4FBA-887B-0A8D8CC9F126Red breasted grosbeak passing through TN. Northern cardinals stay all year around. Not sure about blue one first time seeing him. Love watching the birds in my backyard. Trying to learn each’s song.
      • Aaron
        Participant
        Chirps: 16
        The blue one is an Indigo Bunting. Cool!
    • Gabrielle
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      IMG_2368IMG_2410IMG_2417 Two Hairy Woodpeckers on our suet feeder. A Mallard family at Volunteer Park. A Bushtit nest in a neighbor's tree.
    • Aaron
      Participant
      Chirps: 16
      Recently we have had a White-winged dove, a rare species in our area! It comes to our feeder. IMG_1256
    • Sylvia
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      #2 - 3 types of birds I’ve seen in my neighbourhood: raptor (red-tailed hawk), hummingbird (Ruby-throated) and dove (mourning dove). 6DBDAC75-5D54-4AEB-B6F0-1CDBCE24482C
    • Ruby
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      I saw a number of Western Scrub Jays. They are very territorial birds and I see them in the same location. I love the way the look, like an elegant plane and color coordinated at that. I've also seen a number of Red-winged Blackbirds, they have such a distinct song. Although I haven't been able to recognize a female yet.
    • Elizabeth
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      I saw a beautiful Eastern Bluebird during my bike ride today in Cincinnati, and I am always thrilled when I see one. I spotted another blue bird twice on my bike ride yesterday along the river, and it did not have the rust-colored chest that I typically see. It was brilliantly blue, almost turquoise. I am now doing some research to find out what I saw!
      • Ruby
        Participant
        Chirps: 2
        For some reason I get extra excited when I see blue birds. The ones in may area of San Francisco Bay area, that I have seen, are Western Scrub-Jay and Western Bluebird.
      • Aaron
        Participant
        Chirps: 16
        This bird sounds like an Indigo Bunting or a Mountain Bluebird, depending on where you live.
    • Brianna
      Participant
      Chirps: 2
      Activity 1: I was fascinated by the bird ancestors and extinct birds. What a neat representation of them. Activity 2: This week I found a new bird at my feeder, and struggled to identify it. However, I finally was able to, and it turns out it was a female rose-breasted grosbeak. So exciting! We also have white breasted nuthatches in the neighborhood regularly and some sort of hawk. Activity 3: My favorite bird in my neighborhood is the blue jay. I love them! They're so loud and it's awesome.
    • Trevor
      Participant
      Chirps: 8
      I think one of the most fun things I've found in bird watching so far is finding that one unique individual that just stands out. For example, I'm pretty sure that this HAS to be the wise old elder House Finch female. This is a picture of a picture, lol. Took the shot with my dslr and then shared with others (you guys) by snapping a picture with my phone of the picture review on the camera screen. 20200516_173649
      • Deb
        Participant
        Chirps: 2
        The house finch parents MUST be some of the most patient birds on the planet!  Their fledglings are continuously following them and harassing them for food!  Even as those babies watch their parents eating at our feeder, the babies demand food from the parent instead of noticing where mom/dad is getting its food!  You can almost see the disgust in the parents' demeanor.  It's adorable, too, though.  The fledglings are easy to identify because they almost always have the cute tufts of down on their heads like in your picture, just like Alfalfa in the Little Rascals.
    • Leanne
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      I learned many interesting facts about various birds during these lessons, such as how several have lost their ability to fly.  I found the discussion on how to use different bird guides especially helpful.  I am fortunate to be in the countryside  in western New Hampshire where I can take walks through wooded areas and discovered multiple warblers migrating through.  I was excited to identify this Cape May Warbler this morning after seeing it in some marshyCape May Warbler brush just up my road yesterday.
    • Kathy
      Participant
      Chirps: 3
      I am just starting this course and really enjoy it and all the photos and info people have posted.   I live on the central coast area of CA.  I really like the seabirds and wading birds that we can see over by the coast ( herons, egrets, cormorants, and gulls), but with the lockdown, I've been staying around my neighborhood, inland, and enjoying seeing and hearing the  garden and house birds., as I go for  a walk each day.  I was excited to hear what I thought was a mockingbird, though I didn't know what one looked like, and came home to look it up and sure enough, there is one nearby.  A friend had given me a birdbath for my apartment patio several months ago, and I had never seen any birds come to use it until last week when a couple of little sparrows come every day to splash in it.  That has been fun to watch. Activity # 1:   I liked looking up info on the Puffin and  Blue Footed Booby  as they are unusual in coloring, and it was nice to hear the cardinal again  ( we don't have them in our part of CA and there was one that used to come to the tree outside my aunt's house in Kansas when I lived there one year when she was ill, and it's singing always brought a smile to our faces.) I'm looking forward to learning more about birds, and am grateful to a friend who gifted me with this course.
    • Deborah
      Participant
      Chirps: 6
      I am staying with my parents for a few weeks in a New York City suburb.  They have a few stray cats that they feed each day on the deck.  I have noticed that there are always 4 or 5 bluejays that gather around during feeding time in the trees around the deck.  As soon as the cats start to walk away, they descend on the food, often squawking and arguing over the leftovers.  The cats seem scared of them, as the birds are pretty aggressive.  Very interesting to watch! I just started this course, and I'm trying to identify all the birds I see each day around the yard.
    • Tina
      Participant
      Chirps: 1
      Favorite Bird Every morning, starting in February I heard yank yank yank high in the trees here in Portland Oregon in an area of mature conifers and broad leaf trees.  Red Breasted Nuthatch (RBN).  Heard, but not seen.  Starting in mid-May one individual RBN began to actively feed in the trees and even ventured down to the potted plants on my balcony.  It was picking insects and spiders from the plants.  I had combed out my brush and left some hair in one pot, thinking that the Anna's hummers would use it for nesting.  It was a good surprise to see the RBN swoop into the pot and fly off with a soft bundle of hair to line it's cavity nest. I don't know why I never see more than one RBN at a time around the trees but I am glad that that one is nesting.