Sunday, March 23, 2008

Weekend Bird Photos

The first official weekend of Spring brought some warmer temperatures to the Treasure Valley (Boise River Valley). It was still cool enough the we chose the afternoons for our bike rides, a long road tandem ride with friends on Saturday and our first mountain tandem ride of the year on Sunday! The mornings were spent hiking and birdwatching the Hull's Grove loop, a 3.5 mile loop from our house. We saw the usual birds out and about counting a little over 20 species each morning. The highlight was watching a Sharp-shinned Hawk in a dive chasing a Red-winged Blackbird. He/she was gaining fast as they slipped out of sight behind the trees. He came up empty as a few seconds later he/she was soaring above the trees without the prey. Here are the photos for the weekend.

Male American Kestrel.

Bohemian Waxwings were out again this weekend.

Female Belted Kingfisher Left, joined by male.

Apparently the female wasn't in the mood.

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Wordsmith said...

I'm getting these little birds aren't much bigger than sparrows, but they have reddish heads. I have no idea what they are.

wolf21m said...

My guess would be that they are most likely House finches. They could also be Cassin's Finches. You have to look closely to tell the difference. If you look at the inner part of the bill wher the top bill meets the bottom bill, the House finch has a slight downward curve, the Cassin's should be straight. Most of them in our area are House Finches.

Wordsmith said...

Okay - I was waiting for them to come back. The house finches seem to have shorter bodies or are just pleasingly plump.

I think these are the house finches. The beak was fairly short as well.

They are hanging out in a huge conifer about 30 feet from the large tree off my balcony. They're probably ecstatic that a 'bird restaurant' has opened so closeby.