Below is a list with photos of all the people who are regular visitors to my yard. Click on each photo for the full albums and larger photos:
Mr. Led-belly is a beautiful male Red-bellied Woodpecker who has been a frequent yard visitor for the past couple years.
Mrs. Led-belly is the wife of Mr. Led-belly, and they are a lovely Red-bellied Woodpecker pair. Mrs. Led-belly is very vocal. She announces her arrival before she comes in for a landing on the suet feeder. She’s also aggressive – she will fight off the Starlings and Downy Woodpeckers so she can dine in private!
Mr. and Mrs. Led-belly usually have a baby every year. Here are a few Red-babies. The first is a girl from this past spring of 2010. The second was one of the first Red-babies we ever saw here.
We have many Blue Jays who come to the yard every day. They love the peanuts I throw out for the squirrels. They always end up getting about half the stash each morning. Some take two or three at once. Each summer there are at least 5 or 6 new broods, and the noise is incredible. Blue Jays are my favorite birds.
There are usually 2 or 3 pairs of Downys in the yard at all times. There have been babies every summer as well.
Harry the Hairy Woodpecker
Harry is the camera-shy male Hairy Woodpecker that has been coming to the yard for the past few years. I’ve only ever seen a female once or twice, but Harry is a regular.
It’s hard to believe I can call these birds regulars, but they have been coming to the feeders enough that I am putting them here. The most I have seen at once was 5 birds, and they love all different kinds of seed and also the suet!
Boyd and Betty
Boyd and Betty are a pair of American Robins that have nested near the yard for the past five springs. This past year they had two nests. One failed, but then later in the summer they had a little baby who fledged and was often feeding in the yard.
Black-capped Chickadees are frequent visitors to the yard in the fall and winter. Sometimes I see them in spring and summer as well, but mostly when it is colder. For the most part, they are quite tame. One even clung onto my hand as I was putting the refilled tube feeder back onto the hanger. I recently hung a nest box out for them to keep warm this winter. Let’s hope they decide to use it.
Common Grackles are frequent visitors and have also nested in the yard during the spring for five years in a row now. Grackles are some of my favorite birds with their gorgeous, shiny black iridescent feathers and their piercing eyes.
Beautiful Red-winged Blackbirds have nested near our yard for four years in a row, which is weird because we don’t live near wetlands or a body of water. Usually I see adult or juvenile males, but once the babies are hatched and fledged, the females become more frequent at the feeders.
Almost year-round visitors, American Goldfinches are loving all the thistle seed available to them in the yard. I have sock feeders and upside down tube feeders that are designed specifically for Goldfinches. My high count was more than 125 two winters ago.
House Finches breed in our yard and are always eating at the thistle feeders and sometimes at the sunflower feeders too. They are here year-round. Gorgeous little things.
Each fall and winter, we usually have a few White-breasted Nuthatches visiting or nesting in the yard. This fall so far we have a pair.
Cardinals are year-round visitors and they nest in the yard. Yet for some reason it’s difficult to get a good photo of one! Here are a couple cute pictures of a bright male.
We usually have a few Titmice flitting around in the fall and winter.
During each fall and winter, we always see cute little White-throated Sparrows, who usually hang out with some Juncos and the occasional Song or (rarer) Chipping Sparrow. They love to scratch around under the suet feeder over by the main two feeders.
We usually have a few Song Sparrows during the fall and winter mixed in with the White-throats and others.
Mourning Doves love our yard. They are here year-round and enjoy feeding beneath the main feeders or just walking around and seeing what they can find.
Mostly I just hear them, but there are a pair across the street who sometimes come into the yard. This past spring they brought a baby into the yard to feed.
OK, I know they are nonnative birds, but these babies are adorable! And what can you do? They come around no matter what, so I try to appreciate their beauty.
The Pigeons live near the yard in a highway overpass. Also, a nearby resident used to breed them, and many still live in the old coops. The coop birds are pure solid white and very large. Some have interbred with the wild flock. Yes, they create a lot of chaos and eat much of the food, but they have come to be part of the yard family. We’ve learned to embrace the Pigeons and appreciate the many color and pattern varieties.
There are many squirrels who live in and near the yard. Some are easily distinguished by certain markings; others are not. Here are a few photos of some.
Nina is one of a few feral cats who frequents the yard. Being a cat lover and a bird lover, it is difficult to walk the line here. I leave a water bowl out for the cats, the squirrels, and small birds. Others use the main bird bath. Nina is fed by my neighbors. We have tried to trap and neuter her, but she is so smart that she cannot be caught. So she has had many litters, most of which we catch and neuter and find homes for. Nina is black and white with a black button nose.
Jeeju is a tabby cat with a lot of white patches on him. He was successfully trapped and neutered by my neighbors. He’s a gentle boy who likes to sleep in the sun on the wood chips in the yard. He likes to play with the squirrels and chase them, but he never hurts them (and vice versa!). Although I’ve seen him scare the Pigeons and chase some birds occasionally, I’ve never seen him actually catch and kill one. He is also fed by my neighbors.