Farewell to June

by John Briggs on June 30, 2009

in Bird Photographs, Bird Photography Weekly, Blog

A sailboat sits in the fog off the Kennebec River. Bath, Maine | Click photo for larger view.

A sailboat sits in the fog off the Kennebec River. Bath, Maine | Click photo for larger view.

I bid a farewell to June. The fog, rain and cloudy skies have grown old. The persistent east and southeast winds coupled with the damp and dreary weather has kept temperatures below normal. There were only four days of sunshine this month, but those sunny days either started out cloudy, or ended cloudy before the sun had a chance to set. The photo to the left tells the story of how most days looked from our home.

Birds have been very active. Fledglings are coming to our feeders with their parents and going through bird seed, suet, grape jelly and nectar like there’s no tomorrow. The only thing is, it’s not very pleasant standing in the rain to get photos. Plus the lighting just plain stinks when weather conditions are such as they are.

So, within the dry confines of our home, I watched the activity. Any photos that I have taken were from a bedroom window with the camera settings at a high ISO and slow shutter speed. Maybe I should invest in a better beamer for days when the sun will not cooperate.

Enough complaining. let’s get to the birds! Here is what I have been seeing as far as fledglings:

Downy Woodpecker – 3 fed by adults
Hairy Woodpecker – 4 (3 females and 1 male) eating on own and being fed
Black-capped Chickadee – 5 fed by adults
Tufted Titmouse – 4 fed by adults
White-breasted Nuthatch – 5 eating on own and being fed
Red-breasted Nuthatch – 6 eating on own and being fed
Gray Catbird – unknown – they are everywhere mostly being fed (3 pair nesting in our yard)
Chipping Sparrows – unknown – fed by adults
Tree Swallows – 6 still in nest box. Should be leaving soon
Ruby-throated Hummingbird – unknown – males protecting nest areas. Estimate at least 6 nesting in yard and immediate area.
Rufous-sided Towhee – unknown – seen adult feeding 2
Rose-breasted Grosbeak – 4? – eating on own
Eastern Phoebe – unknown – still on nest
Great-crested Flycatcher – unknown – still on nest

There are several species of Warbler and at least 3 nesting pair of Baltimore Orioles nesting on our property. No fledglings seen as of yet from these species.

There are other species that I suspect are nesting in our yard, and many more close by. Northern Cardinals are nesting in the area, but I haven’t seen any fledglings as of yet. Pileated Woodpeckers are nesting on the ridge across the road from our home, but no fledglings seen. Eagle and Osprey nests are still being attended to by adults in the area, but no young seen yet.

I am hoping that one of these days the weather will break and we will get into true summer weather soon. Then I can get out and do some nest watching and add to the above list.

In the meantime, I photographed some of the activity around the feeders. Forgive the quality. I hate shooting when there is no sun! As always, clicking a thumbnail will open a shadowbox with an enlarged view.

Happy birding!



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