Sunday, 16 December 2012

Taking the bore out of arborea...

Coming from the West Coast, American Tree Sparrows maintain a high degree of novelty to me.  Their scientific name is Spizella arborea, but there is no need to have 'bore' nestled in the middle of the specific epithet.

I am in Ontario for the winter and let's just say it's not the same as being on the coast.  Unless I can find a lake with some open water, the bird activity is pretty limited.  I have walked around two days in a row and my species total barely cracks double digits.  That's not to say I'm not enjoying the birds I have encountered.  I've seen three of the quintessential birds of the east: Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata), Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) and White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis).  What's not to love about them?  The American Tree Sparrows, however, continue to be my daily highlight.  They have a certain charm as they twitter to each other while busily stripping flower heads of seeds.

They are one sharp little sparrow!

Not a bore - am I right or am I right?

The conditions have been pretty dull the last two days, but hopefully I'll be able to get out and take some better shots if the weather cooperates.  I wouldn't mind firing off some shots of Northern Cardinals if they are willing to cooperate on a brighter day.

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