LIFE'S BETTER IN THE MOUNTAINS

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Lady Jane Cardinal and the Crossbill

One of our female Northern Cardinals is easy to identify because of her color. She has much more gray and less reddish-brown than is typical. At our house, identification means the bird gets a name. This one is Lady Jane. She is also much less aggressive than most cardinals. On this particular day, she was eating at a feeder when a molting Red Crossbill flew up.


She paid no attention at all to the crossbill.

The crossbill felt obliged to challenge her, but Lady Jane was unfazed.


"Oh," said the crossbill. "So there!"
Lady Jane leans in as if to say she isn't bothered at all by crossbill.
Peace established, the two sat side by side eating.
I love watching the birds interact in the trees and at the feeders. While the results are often predictable, sometimes there can be big surprises.

18 comments:

Kerri said...

Lady Jane sure is beautiful! And I believe this is the first crossbill I have seen.

Rudee said...

My dad used to name the birds that would visit his yard too. He used to have a visiting woodpecker that he called King Farouq. Your Lady Jane is lovely.

robin andrea said...

How wonderful that that crossbill has taken up residence in your neck of the woods. It is such a treat to see one. Lady Jane is a beauty. Nice to see them sharing the feeder.

^..^Corgidogmama said...

Those are wonderful bird pics, and you caught them in action.
Thanks for commenting on my blog.
We'll be in Hendersonville NC on Tues, not too far from Brevard, right? Then on to Chapel Hill to see my daughter/grand daughter!

dAwN said...

Hee hee...very cute monologue and I am sure it was exactly what they were saying and doing...I am glad there are people like you who can understand birdie language...

Cedar ... said...

Lady Jane,... you GO girl!

Cheryl said...

Lady Jane is indeed a lady.....

You have a wonderful knack of capturing your birds and dogs, then your lovely storyline follows.....

Always a pleasure to visit.......

Cicero Sings said...

A great sequence of pictures. I too love watching the exchanges that take place around the feeder. One sees all manner of behaviour!

KGMom said...

I do wonder what birds are saying to each other. Lucky you, you seem to know!

Shellmo said...

I just laughed out loud at the coffee shot and have people looking at me! LOL! (The dial up at the cabin is driving me crazy!) This was wonderful - loved how you could see that crossbill scolding Lady Jane. Lady Jane prevails...
Now I have to clean up my coffee mess.... :-)

Nature Lovin' Super Mama said...

the commentary was funny..you hit it right on the nail. We have a bird feeder in the linving room window, and could watch the birds duke it out all day. always entertaining, thanks for sharing!:)

Mary Isabella and Kiley too! said...

They are so beautiful!!..m.

Ruth said...

I like your spunky Lady Jane. That Crossbill is a moulting mess! Why is he not up north yet?

Jayne said...

The female cardinals are usually extremely patient and peaceful creatures. Nothing seems to upset them, well, except another female cardinal. :c)

NCmountainwoman said...

Thanks everyone!

Kerri - The crossbills are rarely seen around here.

Corgi Mom - Yes, Hendersonville is quite nearby, although it is lower in elevation. We go there often to the Fresh Market. You will enjoy that area.

Ruth - No one is quite sure why we have been blessed with the crossbills. They seem to love our woods, and we do have a lot of conifers for them. We are hoping they will nest here since they have been here since early March.

KB said...

I love the colors on the molting crossbill. He must be an almost one-year old male, since they start yellowish as youngsters and then get their red feathers prior to their first breeding season.

You take such amazing photos!

Mary said...

I'm grinning from ear to ear!

The Zen Birdfeeder said...

Interesting and nicely done series of pictures! Thanks.