LIFE'S BETTER IN THE MOUNTAINS

Thursday, January 1, 2009

First Bird of 2009

On New Year's Day I always eagerly await my first bird sighting. I get my coffee and camera and sit and watch. This morning I was not disappointed. I slept a bit later than usual and the first bird I saw was a female Pileated Woodpecker.

And here she is:





Now, for the bad news. My second, third, fourth, (you keep counting) were Pine Siskins. Yes, they're baaack! I do hope they will leave us as they have done once already this winter. There are so many of them sparing for space that our favorite winter birds hardly have a chance to get to the feeders.

I know that many of you love the Pine Siskins, and I dearly wish I could send them to you.

And here they are (a few of them at least):



Hope you enjoyed your first bird this morning.

Best wishes for a wonderful 2009!

17 comments:

George said...

What a beautiful way to start the new year! We have plenty of pine siskins here as well -- I don't think we need any more.

Cheryl said...

What a stunning bird.....I love his red hat!

The pine siskins are very pretty......I understand what you say about the feeders, you do get dominant species hogging them. I don't know the answer to that one unfortunately.......

Nice bird shots for the New Year......

Shellmo said...

Nice shot of the pileated - and what a great 1st bird to see in 2009! I only have a couple siskins right now so they haven't worn out their welcome....yet!

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Ha Carolyn---I 'tried' to take your Siskins away from you--but found out that I have way too many of my own. SO--I gave them to Helen in VA. HA HA HA...

Love your Pileated. I haven't see one in awhile.

Happy 2009.
Hugs,
Betsy

Cedar ... said...

what a fantastic bird she is! And re: pine siskins,... i call them a "herd" of vacuum cleaners,. just sucking up all the bird food. Send them anywhere but here! :)

Kallen305 said...

You lucky gal. I would love to have that be my first bird. Sadly my first birds were those awful house sparrows.

I have my first two pine siskins ever today and yesterday. It is weird though because there are only two of them. I am hoping they will bring more and bully the house sparrows some as they deserve it. Send more my way would you. ;o)

Ruth said...

I saw a Pileated Woodpecker on a walk today, my third ever and my husband's first sighting. It was very vocal too. I thought of you and your frequent visits from these beautiful birds. A great start to a New Year.

KGMom said...

Pileateds are so spectacular. I've only seen them once--in Indiana last spring.
We have loads of titmice and juncos. No pine siskins here in PA. At least not in my yard.

Bird Girl said...

Your pileated is wonderful!!! Wish I could see one soon - I just love them! Great picture!
I can see how you could get tired of the siskins - they can eat a LOT of food and they come in flocks!

Have a great 2009!

Toni said...

Happy New Year Carolyn! What an awesome bird to see for the first of the year. I don't get the pine siskins you can send some my way.

Jayne said...

Happy New Year Carolyn! Love your Pileated, and as usual, am green with envy! :c)

nina said...

Oh, I would love to have just one--Pine Siskin!

NCmountainwoman said...

George - We are really hoping these guys will move on soon.

Cheryl - Sometimes the siskins move on. On occasion we have taken down all the feeders except for the suet and they finally get the message.

Shelley - I actually saw her on the suet feeder first. By the time I was ready to focus, she had moved to the tree.

Betsy - Do you think Helen would like to have a few dozen more?

Cedar - Good name for these pesky things.

Kallen - I'd rather have siskins than house sparrows. That would be a disappointing first bird.

Ruth - I am continually amazed at the tropical sound of the Pileated calls even though I hear them several times a day.

Donna - Although we see them almost every day, I never cease to marvel at their beauty. I especially love to see them swooping through the trees.

Bird girl - Not only do they eat a lot of food...they scatter a lot of food as well.

Toni - Believe me, I wish I COULD send you these rascals.

Jayne - We are indeed fortunate and are grateful every time we see one of them.

Nina - You crack me up. I'm not sure there is ever ONE Pine Siskin. You will have to take them all.

Steve B said...

Happy New Year! I really miss the Pine Siskins that I had in Colorado. My other birds, Stellars Jay, Mountain Chickadees, Pigme Nuthatches and all got along famously.

Me, living where I do, the first bird was a Herring Gull. Now you want to talk about bad manners at feeding time!

I see you are feeding with "bird seed". Here is an experiment to try. Fill your feeder with Black Oil Sunflower seed. You will still get a great variety of birds. My siskis used to grab and go off to a near by ponderosa tree and work the seeds. The seeds are bigger and as I understand, more nutritious. Let me know if it brings joy, okay?

Sandscript said...

How interesting that my first bird sighting, here in the Mid-Ohio Valley, was also a piliated woodpecker. They are more obvious now that the trees are bare. The one I saw seemed to have a slightly gray plumage, so unlike that seen in summer.
I'm new to blogging. 'So glad I found your post!
Sandra

Mary said...

The first bird I photographed on January 1st was a Coop. Yes!

But I'd trade it for a Pileated Woodpecker any day :o)

Or a flock of Pine Siskins...

Lucky!

Mary

Kerri said...

Happy New Year! Fabulous capture of the Pileated!!