Bird Watching

Growing up, I have many fond memories of watching birds with my grandparents. We often drove to a bird sanctuary near the Jersey shore or watched the bird feeders in their back yard, which backed up to marsh land. My grandfather loved painting Northern Cardinals. They are one of my favorite birds. And they are the state bird for seven states, including Virginia, which is where I live.

Northern Cardinal at my bird feeder

Although I have a very small yard with a single Crepe Myrtle tree, I am fortunate to have a tree preservation area just behind us. Somewhere back in the woods is a rumored Bald Eagle’s nest. I haven’t actually seen it with my own eyes, but a serious bird watcher in my neighborhood says there is one. I have seen a young Bald Eagle recently, eyeing my dog like its next meal, so the rumor is probably true. I picked up my little guy and ran home. It is necessary to have tree preservation areas where I live, although it seems like the laws are always changing to give way to generating tax revenue.

This is Sam. He is a few months older now, but you can see why an eagle might find him appealing.

I live in a D.C. suburb that has more than 5 million square feet of data space, meaning 70% of the world’s internet traffic passes through here. Data centers are big ugly buildings that sit on a lot of land. Residential construction never seems to end as new homes crowd out farm land and destroy forested areas. When we first moved here, there were cows. They are gone. Now black bears occasionally roam into neighborhoods as we destroy their natural habitats.

Oops! A bit of a tangent there. Back to bird watching. The birds are also losing their natural habitats and as that happens, we are losing birds. According to The Cornell Lab of Ornithology website, we have lost 1 out of 4 birds since 1970.

“We’ve lost 2.9 billion breeding birds from North American skies.”

– from The Cornell Lab of Ornithology website

This young Red Shouldered Hawk dropped by our fence.

I have a small birdfeeder in my tree and I am working on ways to add stands for feeders to my fence. I often enjoy watching birds while I have breakfast, and when I have time during the day. And I often see birds when I am out walking my dog.

Today, I snapped a few photos on our walk, and since I haven’t written recently, I thought I would share one of my interests with you – bird watching.

Red Shouldered Hawk
Red Shouldered Hawk
Red Shouldered Hawk

6 Comments Add yours

  1. Beautiful hawk. ā¤ We had those in California and it was always wonderful to watch them and hear them. There are none in Colorado.

    1. Robin says:

      They are beautiful! I was very excited to see the hawk where I could get a clear photo. šŸ“·

      1. Fantastic photos, Robin. šŸ™‚

  2. Colline says:

    Your photos of the hawk are stunning. He really is a beautiful bird.

    1. Robin says:

      Thanks, Colline! The hawks are often higher in the trees, but luckily for me, this one was sitting on a low tangle of branches just long enough to take a few photos.

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