Birding Notes

Reflections on birds and other wildlife on the edge of a southern woodland

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Ice Skating Warblers

At sunrise this morning, a big bright full moon hung low in the western sky, turning faintly pink and gold. The sky was a clear lavender-gray, with a few wooly clouds like strands of a sweater. White-throated Sparrows called their sibilant “tseets,” and sang. A Yellow-billed Sapsucker mewed. Yellow-rumped Warblers flitted from bare branch to wax myrtle to Savannah holly, calling “check!”

Three Yellow-rumped Warblers came to the birdbath, where a thin puddle of water and leaves had frozen overnight. The warblers all three – one with much brighter yellow markings than the others – took turns hopping onto the ice and slipping on it as they tried to drink through small openings.

A Brown Thrasher with feathers on its head ruffled up into a small peak fed among dry leaves around our Savannah holly, near the porch. A female Towhee kicked up leaves under the bare-limbed crape myrtles. A Carolina Wren clung to the bird feeder, feeding for several minutes. It’s unusual to see a wren on our feeder, though they’re always around the yard.

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