I know, its 5 am and I should be sleeping. But it was warm enough to leave the window open last night and I woke to the sound of hundreds of birds singing. At least it sounds like hundreds.
It's been an amazing spring for spotting birds. Maybe they've been forced out of their usual habitats, perhaps the warming climate has pushed them farther north—I don't know the reason but they all seemed to arrive at once. At our feeders I've spotted three pairs of rose-breasted grosbeaks, a sharp-shinned hawk, an Indigo Bunting (gorgeous blue color), purple finches, catbirds, cowbirds, red-winged blackbirds, a female turkey, a white-crowned sparrow, and two pairs of Baltimore Orioles that I've been enticing to my yard with cut orange halves (they love them).
This is in addition to the more standard birds that hang around all year—cardinals, titmice, chickadees, goldfinches, chipping sparrows, blue jays, juncos, nuthatches, mourning doves, hairy and downy woodpeckers, red-bellied woodpeckers, and wrens.
I've also seen a great blue heron flying over (there are several ponds near us and a creek so he moves around a lot), a pair of belted kingfishers, a pileated woodpecker (the kind that Woody Woodpecker is modeled after), flycatchers, red-tailed hawks, and the broad-winged hawks that have nested here for the last four years. I'm a little disappointed that they're not on our property this time but they do like to hunt in our yard (we have a fairly out-of-control vole situation) so I'm sure we'll see them eventually.
Last to arrive were the ruby-throated hummingbirds. The same two pairs come every year and as soon as I spot them I get out the feeder and mix up a batch of sugar water (4 parts sugar to 1 part water). No need to buy the fancy red-colored mixes—as long as it's sweet they don't care.
I love them all, even if they do wake me too early. Time to grab a cup of coffee and get this day going! It looks like rain...again. One good thing about that - it's forcing me to rest my hip - but, boy, is it boring sitting around :)