Jul 2, 2015
WBB reader Jess Yarnell has her cat Goldilocks to thank for turning her into a bird watcher. Her indoor-only window watcher needed some entertainment, so she purchased a bird feeder. The feathered friends started showing up, and bird watching became a family hobby.
Jun 25, 2015
Mockingbirds are loud, persistent singers and they have a habit of singing all night long. With a suspicious genius they usually choose the corner of the house right over the master bedroom. Even if you close the window the sound penetrates. It would be OK if the song were melodious. Sounds of birds and nature, when sufficiently soft and rhythmic, can be sleep inducers. But the mockingbird’s song is neither soft nor melodious. The mocker is a mimic extraordinaire, incorporating not only the songs of other birds, but also the sounds of the neighborhood.
Jun 18, 2015
Sometimes, yes, sapsuckers damage trees. Their boring won’t kill the tree, but it will weaken the wood and allow the potential for disease to enter. But not necessarily. We’ve seen enormous, healthy-looking trees with sapsucker scars. Unless you plan to sell your tree for lumber, you might never notice a health problem with the tree. Odds are, it will live for many decades despite the sapsucker holes.
May 28, 2015
A close look at chipping sparrows reveals much to admire in its quiet and confiding ways. As common as they are around backyards and parks, we know surprisingly little about their mating habits. One Ontario study showed males not to be monogamous, as assumed, but to mate freely. These birds have the interesting habit of lining their nests with animal hair. They'll also use human hair, but more on that later.
May 23, 2015
Cece Wetzel sent us these pictures of a summer tanager visiting her suet feeder in southeastern Ohio. So cool! What birds are sharing your backyard this weekend?
May 21, 2015
Not all birds make neat, cup-shaped nests, or carve out hollows in trees. Some use unusual materials and make truly odd creations.
May 14, 2015
If you've got some time to spare, here are a few backyard projects to keep you going on those slow weekends.
May 7, 2015
American goldfinches are brightening feeder-filled backyards, weedy fields, and grassy meadows all over North America. In fact, 48 states and 9 provinces host the black-and-yellow birds for at least part of the year. Generally speaking, southern Canada has them during summer; the southern United States has them during winter; and the northern United States has them year-round.
Apr 9, 2015
The very first time I saw a Baltimore oriole was when it landed on my hummingbird feeder one spring. I was immediately hooked. I had to have this bird in my yard! For the next five years, I placed numerous orange slices on tree limbs and special oriole feeders filled with orange nectar on hooks all over the yard-to no avail.
Apr 2, 2015
You don't need to be a bird expert to know that hummingbirds are cool! Check out this list of facts about these flying jewels of the bird world.
Mar 26, 2015
As spring emerges across North America in all its wondrous ways, our backyard birds begin making more of their beautiful music. Here are 10 things you might not know about backyard bird songs.
Mar 18, 2015
Try to spot a robin tomorrow at 6:44 p.m. EDT. It will be the last robin of winter. If you watch it long enough, it could turn into the first robin of spring right before your eyes! Spring begins at 6:45 p.m. EDT March 20 this year.