Monday March 10, 2014
Spring is on the way, and that means readers are having more questions about nesting birds and spring birding. This week, Ely from North Carolina asks...
"I had bluebirds at my feeders for the first time this winter, and I'd like them to stay and nest in a bird house I have, but they haven't even looked at it. Is there something more I can do?"
Bluebirds can be finicky residents and may take some time to get used to a bird house, but if you use proper bluebird houses you'll have a better chance of inviting them to raise a brood. The house needs to be the right size and properly positioned, and if you take other steps to attract bluebirds, you'll stand a good chance of success.
Are you a bluebird landlord? Share your tips in the comments!
Photo © Shanthanu Bhardwaj
Sunday March 9, 2014
Though the Indian peafowl made a good showing, it couldn't stand up to the Mandarin duck, and that wonderful waterfowl that will represent Asia in the next round of voting. Which of these African birds will join it?
The lilac-breasted roller is one of Africa's most beautiful birds with its pastel rainbow plumage and graceful tail, and its characteristic rolling flight is always a gorgeous show. A highly sought after target bird, these birds often perch in the open and offer birders amazing views.
The superb starling helps give starlings a better name than their European cousins. With bold plumage and stunning colors, this bird is superb indeed, and while it may be common in its range, its uncommon beauty keeps birders visiting Africa for outstanding lifers.
Which of these birds should move on to the next round? Vote in the poll below to help choose the winner, but don't wait - voting is only open for two days!
Saturday March 8, 2014
There are 20 North American hummingbird species that may visit, breed or migrate into the United States, but few birders will see all of them unless they know where to go. Fortunately, thanks to the efforts of the American Bird Conservancy, Tucson Audubon Society, Victor Emanuel Nature Tours and more than 1,000 generous birders, one of the best hummingbird hotspots in the county has been saved and will be available for generations of birders to enjoy.
According to a press release, Paton's Birder Haven in Patagonia, Arizona, has been purchased by the combined groups, with enough funds to ensure its maintenance and management as a public bird sanctuary through the Tucson Audubon Society. Of the 20 hummingbird species that may be seen in the United States, 15 of them have been regularly recorded on the property, and occasional rarer species show up as well.
Where do you go to see hummingbirds? Share your hotspots in the comments!
Photo © Don Faulkner
Friday March 7, 2014
It was a tight flight, but the blue tit flew to a late victory over the European robin and will represent Europe in the next round of birding March Madness. Which of these Asian birds will join it?
The national bird of India, the Indian peafowl and is immediately recognizable for the male's beautiful, fan-like tail, though those elaborate feathers aren't his tail at all - they're the uppertail coverts. These astonishing birds are popular residents of zoos, aviaries and botanical gardens worldwide.
The Mandarin duck is widely considered to be one of the world's most beautiful ducks, and while the female is more camouflaged, there is no mistaking the male with his bold colors and unusual feather shapes. Like their competitor in this challenge, these ducks are also popular residents of exotic bird collections.
Which of these beauties should move on to the next round of competition? Your votes will decide, so be sure to participate in the poll below and help choose the winner!
Voting has ended for this matchup. Which bird has moved on?