Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Joys of Winter

I've been an avid bird enthusiast and watcher for several years, going on 20 years, perhaps. They always fascinated me while I watched them on hot summer days when I poured bird seed out on the driveway and the English or House Sparrows would come by the hundreds. If something spooked them, it sounded as if there was an explosion of sorts, it was almost scary. They're just little birds, but with their collective wings, they could really make a roar. Then on into the winter months a whole variety of birds would come to the feeders...anywhere from the voracious Blue Jay, which were the ones that intrigued me the most...these Blue Jays will take their seed on a tree branch and crack it by putting the seed (sunflower, btw) in between their feet and pounding on it with their beaks until the shell broke and they could get to the kernel inside, I was often amazed as I watched them swoop in so gracefully on snowy day just before a storm arrived. Then there are the little black-capped chickadees and tufted titmouses, they flit in and out just fast enough to grab a seed and take it to a safe location away from any house cats that may be lurking underneath the bushes nearby.

Today, I looked out the window and saw this beautiful Northern Cardinal along with his mate, these birds supposedly mate for life if I'm not mistaken, much the same as the Bald Eagles do. Here is what I saw...

(Editor's Note: It is really cold out at the time of this photo, notice how the Cardinal has its feathers all puffed out in the breast area.)

Pretty, isn't he? These birds have the most beautiful song, what cheer, what cheer, cheer, cheer, cheer ... well, that's about the best I can describe it to you. You would just have to hear it to appreciate it.

It appears that the birds are going to be around the feeders for a while; there is a tremendous snow pack in place, and more snow is on the way. I also took some pictures of the icicles hanging from the roof over our back-porch...

Oh where, Oh where is our "global warming," the birds might sing...or maybe they have better sense than Al Gore and go south for the winter where they always have for thousands upon thousands of years, since the beginning of time. However, biologically speaking, that would only apply to the insect-eating birds, and birds that thrive on fruits and berries, which are plentiful in the southern United States and South America. There is also the hummingbirds which travel north during mid-spring to raise a brood or two of young and then go back south, these birds thrive on nectar-rich tubular flowers that most bees have a hard time reaching or find detestable, or just aren't abundant enough to produce a store of honey. Hummingbirds have long, sleek needle like beaks with a long tongue that they use for extracting and feeding on the nectar from flowers. These teeny-tiny birds expend a tremendous amount of energy flitting from flower to flower, burning energy as they consume it. So they eat to live and live to eat. Amazing! God is an awesome God!
Then there are the seed-eating birds, which were made for the colder regions, and the birds that withstand the harsh winters of these regions.

God bless you all. Bundle up and keep warm!

Thanks for visiting Conservatives United!

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