Not everyone loves hot weather. Sure there are many who migrate to warmer climates, but there are also those who stay here above the 49th Parallel, at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
A walk through the woods in the last couple of days allowed me to check out who my winter friends are. I say friends because, for some of them, they would fly straight to me, greeting and calling. Yes, I know, they all want treats. But hey, not many choose to stay. So, for those that do, they deserve a free lunch.
Here are some of my winter pals. We’re in it together, come snow and storm in the coming weeks and months. The Black-capped Chickadee:
The White-breasted Nuthatch, like the Chickadees, official greeters whenever I visit:
So, a treat for you all:
Female Downy Woodpecker:
The Red Squirrel:
Of course, there are those who’d want to strike out on their own:
The elusive Blue Jay. Yes I hear their calls all the time, but very hard to actually get a photo:
Here’s a Red-breasted Nuthatch in the evening light:
But my greatest catch is this. From afar, a gigantic furry ball high on a tree:
I thot I thaw a pussy cat, but when he turned his head 180 degrees, almost, then I knew what I thaw was a Great Horned Owl! I’ve followed an Owl Family for a few years now, always thought they fly to warmer places in the winter.
Of course, he didn’t care for my free lunch of sunflower seeds. Looks like he’s captured his prey, keeping it close by his side, uh… looks like a squirrel. His look speaks volumes. I know, I should have brought a bigger lunch:
I can see there are lots of winter birding adventures ahead.
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ALL PHOTOS TAKEN BY ARTI OF RIPPLE EFFECTS
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Here are posts on the Great Horned Owl Family I’ve been stalking every Spring: