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Book plugs and bird stories


Last week Brian mentioned directions to Will Suitt Road are on Will's
website. I thought I would plug "A Birdwatcher's Guide to the Triangle"
again by
saying directions and a description written by Les Todd are also
included in Wake Audubon's book, in the Upper Falls Lake Area. And, to
plug a new
book that's almost ready to go to the printer, "Birding in North
State Parks", Brian wrote the article covering Falls Lake SRA, including
Will Suitt Road area.

Joe and I didn't go to Wings Over Water this weekend so we missed seeing
the rare birds we're all reading about. As much as I love seeing rare
birds like the Green-breasted Mango and Snowy Owl last year, nothing
beats the experiences of our common back yard  birds. My heart was
beating with excitement last week when I looked out the front window and
saw two Evening Grosbeaks drinking from the bird bath!! A new yard bird!
Two years ago we drove to Jeff Pippen's house in Durham to see our first
one in NC. Now I'll be looking closer at the House Finches for a Purple
Finch or Pine Siskin since it looks like it will be a good winter. We've
also had juncos in our yard already.

Another surprising, fun bird sighting also happened in the bird
bath--this time in our back yard. A Brown Thrasher was enjoying a bath
in the ground bird bath, splashing all around. One robin flew in and
landed close to the bath, while another robin perched on a tree close
by. Meanwhile, a Tufted Titmouse was perched in a holly bush and cedar
tree looking very interested at this activity. A robin attempts to chase
off the splashing thrasher, but was unsuccessful. Suddenly, there are
four robins, so the thrasher is outnumbered and flies off. Now three
robins are  perched on the edge of the bath sipping water and the fourth
robin is on the ground closeby. Then the titmouse flies down and joins
the robins! It was funny and cute to see the difference in size and
boldness of the titmouse. After two robins flew off the titmouse started
splashing in the water while the other two robins continued to drink.
Funny how the feeder area is quiet, but all of a sudden there is a burst
of activity!!

Speaking of feeders, Donna is right. Project Feederwatch begins on
November 10, celebrating their 15th anniversary this year. To sign up
contact the Cornell Lab of Ornithology at http://birds.cornell.edu/pfw

Happy birding!!

Karen Bearden
Raleigh, NC