We were sitting at the table when we noticed a black bird with a splotch of white on his back. It was backlit by the sun so we weren't at all sure what it was. I grabbed a quick photograph through the door. Looking through the lens I realized we had just seen our first migrating Rose-breasted Grosbeak. There was no mistaking that bill.
I went outside to watch the woods hoping the bird or one of his friends might come back.
My reward came rather quickly. Another lovely grosbeak wearing his best summer plumage. These birds occasionally nest in the highest NC mountains, but for us they are merely traveling through our area during Spring and Fall Migration. While they are lovely at all seasons, nothing compares to the bright rosy chests they sport during the Spring. Their backs are a speckled black and white; the heads are black; and their front bodies purest white.
He stared directly at me
Then he looked away as he prepared to fly
The males will stay around for a week or so and then will be joined by the less colorful but still beautiful females. After a few days the males will continue their journeys leaving the females behind again. The females will leave after a week or so and we will not see any of them again until the Fall migration.
I had a lovely blogging break and took many day trips all over western NC with our mountain loving daughter. The weather was perfect except for one rainy day. That is expected to change for the worse tonight as we prepare for some severe storms.
Our thoughts go out to those in eastern NC affected by last Friday's severe weather and to those in Oklahoma and Arkansas over the weekend. And to those in pain all over our planet.