Friday, April 25, 2008

Summer birds

They're back! Yippee!

When I got up this morning, I was sitting here with the window open, and I heard a different kind of whistle coming from the deck. I turned around, and there he was on the deck railing. (I took this picture last year.) I love these guys, and so far they've come back every year. I called him Oreo, by the way. <grin> I think their coloring is just so vivid and striking, and they also sing beautifully. So now there's an orange out on the little deck table, waiting for Oreo.

This bodes well for the return of the hummingbirds, too. As Ken knows (I probably mention it every day), I'm a little bummed that our hummies haven't made an appearance yet. I'm hoping that it's just a matter of a rather late spring, and they'll be here soon.

I also heard, but didn't see, our Grey Catbird. Sometimes they'll come up to the deck (they like oranges and grape jelly just like orioles), but usually they're fairly shy. They're also one of my favorites--they look sort of distinguished and handsome, with their charcoal grey color and darker patch on their head. Sounds boring, but something about them just seems handsome to me. I believe one of my bird books even describes them as a "handsome, slate-grey bird." They have a very distinctive call, too, that sounds like a cat mewling (thus the name catbird).

When I heard them calling this morning, it made me grin because it reminded me of last year when we had a garage sale. My Mom and Dad were here helping out, and when it was real quiet, one of the catbirds started up, and sounded really loud.

Mom: What kind of bird is that? It sounds like a cat!

Me: It's a catbird!

Dad: [bursts out laughing, thinking that I'm making a joke]

Me: No, really, it's a Grey Catbird, and they're called that because they really do sound like a meowing cat! 

We got a good laugh over that one. I've also seen our cowbird couple this morning. I have no explanation for why they're named after cows.

1 comment:

madcobug said...

That is a very good picture. I think they are very pretty birds. I watched a really smart Grosbeak yesterday. I have taken one side off my large birdfeeder so I can put seed in it as it is so high that I can't pour the seeds inside from the top. Anyway it had come a hard rainshower. This bird was sitting in rain on one side but went around the feeder and got inside to get out of the rain. It eased back out to one side and I grabbed my camera, I had it focused on it and the dogs were going out their doggied door which is what they do when I get my camera out. I was softly calling then back and when I looked to get my shot it was gone. I was so dissapointed as that was the first one I had seen here in several years. I heard the catbird calling late yesterday afternoon as I was watering my pots of flowers. It was really close but I never saw it but I did spot it earlier this week. Sorry my comment is so long. Helen