Monday, March 12, 2012

Barbara's Garden Friends

My in-laws garden is also a haven for several varieties of birds.
While we were there, a baby mockingbird was blasting his song out for all to hear.

Southern California mockingbird have a song that is so loud and so persistent that many people find they no longer like having mockingbirds in the neighborhood.

Usually one bird will stake his claim to an area and spend all day and all night flying a set pattern between perches.

Once I spotted the branch this loud mouth had chosen it was easy see him.
It took zooming in on him with my camera to discover he was still a baby with downy feathers and short tail and wing feathers.

His singing voice...oh that part of him was fully grown.

He would look one way...

Then the other....
Then he would look up...

And then he would let rip with a series of notes.
Wee wee wee...chirp, chirp, kree kree...cheeseburger, cheeseburger, cheeseburger...

(I am not making that last part up.  That is what the song sounded like!)

Then he would start looking one way...

And then the other....

Fluff up his throat...

 And begin his song again.
Then wing away to one of his territorial perches.
Want to hear him in action?
(I clearly need to do a better job doing videos, but at one point you can see a tiny humming bird buzz by the mocker.  The hummer also liked that particular spot for singing!)

Then he would wing away to another one of his territorial perches.

The soft chirp of a finch flitting close to the ground was almost inaudible.

A steady chitter came from a flock of English sparrow that swooped in and out of a pepper tree behind the property finally revealed a Mama Sparrow and her baby fledgelings that still shamelessly demanded to be fed.

Zooming in with my camera I could see the short wing feathers and downy bits still on the fat baby birds.
A few moments later I was in for a surprise.

I had never seen goldfinches in San Diego before.

Goldfinches swarm about in our snowy garden at home, steadily taking a thistle seed one at a time from our window bird feeder.

I thought it was such a visual treat to see the goldfinches feeding on dandelions blooming on the wire fence.

(Hmmm...this  shot just might make for a really cool spring time blog header...)

These bird sure know how to pick a perfect setting to pose for their picture.

I really liked this shot...

My father-in-law Hal said he had seen the birds out there before but had thought somebody's canary had gotten loose.

Funny how an old rusty hurricane fence looks so artistic with the addition of a goldfinch perching on it!

I did mention that it was up to 92 degrees out there didn't I?
The garden lizards were enjoying the bright warm sunshine in their usual fashion.
Lizard: Are you lookin' at me?

Lizard: I said...are you lookin' at ME?

Doesn't he look like he was ready to start a fight?
Silly lizard.

The square orange thing is a one inch tile.
Me: Yes, I am looking at you. I think you are very cute little baby lizard.


Vee said...

Regis, is that you?

Well we had a chuckle over the "cheeseburger, cheeseburger, cheeseburger." Personally, I think you were hungry because I didn't hear that part of the song. :)

ellen b. said...

Great job at capturing all these great shots. I do know that mockingbird chirp well. My brother had a resident in his Downey yard that seemed to never stop!
Glad you got a trip in to San Diego....

Kathy said...

Loved seeing (and watching) your feathered friends. Such great entertainment you had. Thanks for sending some my way. Love your photos as always.