8 August 2020

Posts Tagged ‘red-breasted nuthatch’

Neighborhood Quail

Thursday, August 6th, 2020
California Quail family, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 06 August 2020.
California Quail family (in my front yard).
Quail chick on the go, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 06 August 2020.
Quail chick on the go.

This year’s little California Quail can fly pretty well already. I had quite a display out my front window this afternoon: the whole family fluttered over from a neighbor’s yard and ended up in the garden by the curb; then, soon after, they all emerged and, with the adults keeping watch, the little guys poked about in the lawn.

Now that I’ve been here a full year, I’ve come to know the quails’ habits pretty well—their clucks and calls and subtle messages to the young ’uns. They seem to prefer running across the streets and yards and driveways, but they’ll take wing if they have to. (I worry a bit about one neighbor’s outdoor cat, but all I’ve seen in its mouth have been rodents.)

It’s a pretty nice day when you can look out your window at what the quail are up to.

On this morning’s mostly quiet hike with dog, meantime, I spied a tanager, more broad-tails, a Virginia’s Warbler, and da random nuthatch. Also, the young Cooper’s are still hanging around Coyote Canyon.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Rock Pigeon*
2. Mourning Dove*
3. Black-chinned Hummingbird
4. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay**
5. Western Tanager
6. House Finch*
7. Spotted Towhee
8. Lazuli Bunting
9. Black-capped Chickadee
10. American Robin (v)
11. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
12. Broad-tailed Hummingbird
13. Lesser Goldfinch**
14. Cooper’s Hawk (v)
15. Virginia’s Warbler
16. Red-breasted Nuthatch

Elsewhere

17. House Sparrow (v)
18. California Quail

Mammals

Rock Squirrel

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere

**Voice only elsewhere

Life Goes On

Friday, July 31st, 2020
Broad-tailed Hummingbird (male), East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, UTah, 31 July 2020.
Broad-tailed Hummingbird (male).

Broad-tailed Hummingbirds have not been cooperative when it comes to posing for photos—until today.

I’ve caught glimpses of these high-elevation hummers in Coyote Canyon—the cool, shady valley that dog and I ascend each morning—as they zip around hunting tiny insects among the proliferous bigtooth maple leaves. But the light is dim, and hummingbirds are active, and I sort of gave up.

Today, though, there a few (or more) were making those cricket-like sounds with their wings above us as, so I stopped to watch and listen, and a male decided to perch right in front of me. (I rarely see males, either, since they’re basically chauvinist pigs who sleep around and the leave the nest-building, chick-rearing, and youngster-feeding to females.)

Male Black-throated Gray Warbler feeding fledgling, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, UTah, 31 July 2020.
Male Black-throated Gray Warbler feeding fledgling.

Felt good to grab that photo.

In contrast, just beyond the hummers, I happened upon a male Black-throated Gray Warbler bring a small lacy-winged insect to a begging fledgling.

And so life goes on despite it all.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Black-chinned Hummingbird
2. Mourning Dove
3. House Finch**
4. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
5. American Robin*
6. Eastern Towhee
7. Black-headed Grosbeak
8. Lazuli Bunting
9. Black-capped Chickadee
10. Red-breasted Nuthatch
11. Pine Siskin
12. Broad-tailed Hummingbird
13. Cooper’s Hawk
14. Black-throated Gray Warbler
15. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
16. Lesser Goldfinch** (v)

Elsewhere

17. Eurasian Collared Dove (v)

Mammals

Mountain Cottontail

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere

**Voice only elsewhere

Cooper’s Hawks

Monday, July 13th, 2020
Standoff between Cooper’s Hawk and Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 13 July 2020.
Standoff between Cooper’s Hawk and Blue-gray Gnatcatcher.

A couple months ago I noticed signs of a Cooper’s Hawk nest on the far wooded hillside above Coyote Canyon—whose trail I hike most days with dog. In the past week or so I’ve seen a lot of Cooper’s Hawks.

Female Cooper’s Hawk (with prey), East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 13 July 2020.
Female Cooper’s Hawk (with prey).

Today I saw two, each with prey in its talons. The first was a small sleek adult (a male, I feel sure) was perched in the open, fending off a brave attack by two tiny gnatcatchers. The second (a few minutes later) was a big female in the trees, whose occasional calls sounded a lot like a sapsucker.

[Note: I’ve edited yesterday’s “sapsucker” mention—I’m sure it was the same bird.]

I’ve lately seen at least one juvie Cooper’s circling. I’m sure the young ’uns have fledged. The adults’ behavior interests me. (Did the male bring the female the bird he caught? If so, why?) Most notable, today, was the difference in size of the adults: the female (as is not uncommon hawk circles) was nearly twice the size as the male.

It seems, at least, there are plenty of smaller birds about to feed the family.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:30 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Rock Pigeon
2. Black-chinned Hummingbird
3. House Finch*
4. Lazuli Bunting
5. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
6. Pine Siskin (v)
7. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
8. Spotted Towhee
9. Black-headed Grosbeak
10. Mourning Dove*
11. Black-capped Chickadee**
12. American Robin*
13. Cooper’s Hawk
14. Red-breasted Nuthatch (v)
15. Warbling Vireo
16. Northern Flicker
17. Lesser Goldfinch

Elsewhere

18. Black-billed Magpie

Mammals

Rock Squirrel

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere

**Voice only elsewhere

 
Bird Report is a (sometimes intermittent) record of the birds I encounter while hiking, see while driving, or spy outside my window. —Brian Willson



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