A Cold January

Model in the Mesquite
Orange-crowned Warbler Framed
Orange-crowned Warbler
As the Sun Set...
Eating Cara Cara Oranges

It’s been a cold January in Phoenix…not as cold as the midwestern or eastern parts of the U.S. but consistently colder than usual, day after day. I was excited to see this Orange-crowned Warbler in our yard and thought maybe it was the one that wintered with me for several years, excluding last winter, but now I’m not so sure. She seems to have moved on after a couple weeks of eating jelly and oranges. I’m hoping she returns…such a cute little thing. Maybe she was too cold and headed south.

I make sure the food is out everyday so they can keep fueled. Here are a few more January visitors: a White-crowned Sparrow digging up some dirt, Verdin, Anna’s Hummingbirds, a Rosy-faced Lovebird, Northern Mockingbird looking for peanuts, and A Curve-billed Thrasher showing off. I also have 2 Yellow-rumped Warblers in the yard but they are very skittish and my photos are not good…hoping to get them soon.

Diggin' Up Some Dirt
Verdin
Anna's Fly
Anna's Female Flying
High Key Hummer
Anna's Hummingbird
Rosy-faced Lovebird, immature
Goin' for the Nuts
Curve-billed Thrasher in the Pines

I actually went to a couple places looking for birds but I don’t want to bore you with too many shots so I may make a catch-up post in a few days and show you some of those.

For now, here is a shot of the moon last night, January 30. I’m hoping to see the green comet in the next few days but I don’t have the sort of equipment to get a good photo of it. Somewhere around the Little Dipper…

By the Light of the Silvery Moon

November in the Nick of Time

This juvenile Cooper’s Hawk was sitting on our birdbath the other morning when I went out. I ran back in the house, grabbed my camera and was able to get off one quick, over-exposed shot before it took off. Pretty cool. Second time I’ve seen one in our yard.

We’ve had to have a major demo on our house as it is 70 years old and had disintegrating cast iron pipes under the house so the patio and bathroom had to be destroyed and we will have a new bathroom. We only have one bathroom and this is Day 16 so it’s been very challenging, dirty, whatever. We still have at least 2 weeks to go. We’re miserable. Every morning we have to round up the indoor cats and corral them in a back bedroom so they don’t escape while workers are going in and out.

All this to say, I don’t have many shots or anything much to say other than to complain and whine. So here are a few:

My new photo blind..haven’t used it yet but it’s portable to take places someday or I can use it in the yard.

Misty, the neighbor’s cat, who prefers to eat at our house. And hang out.

The indoor cats: Ferguson (gray), Bouche (black), and Torti (tortoiseshell) going about their days.

Torti as “The Watcher” on Netflix:

A few more backyard shots: a Curve-billed Thrasher in autumn, a Fiery Skipper on lantana, a Rosy-faced Lovebird with a Thanksgiving treat, a happy sunflower.

And that’s about it for this month. We might be skipping Christmas because of all the hectic turmoil here. My free WordPress account has used 95.2% of the media I’m allowed so I am either going to have to pay to keep my blog going, delete a bunch of photos from years ago (time-consuming), start a new blog, or end it all. I like having a blog but they just don’t get read much anymore so not sure what I will be doing. It’s not really worth paying for…

Happy Holidays!!!!

Almost Halloween…

…And I have no Halloween photos this year. This Anna’s Hummingbird posed in the late afternoon sunlight for me a couple days ago as did the Curve-billed Thrasher below.

I went to my old standby Granada Park, that I used to frequent a few years ago. The birds were very sparse, it seemed altogether different…and boring. All I saw was this cute Desert Cottontail with an Abert’s Towhee. I don’t think I’ll go back for quite awhile.

And a Cloudless Sulphur Caterpillar on Senna:

But I still haven’t seen many butterflies in our yard and I think the season for that is coming close to an end. All of these are skippers: Violet-clouded Skipper, Fiery Skipper, and Eufala Skipper.

Pollinators coming in for a landing: a Leafcutter Bee and a Fiery Skipper. If we didn’t have lantana, we wouldn’t have any butterflies at all, I guess.

I was mostly excited to see that the Gila Woodpeckers have returned. They are not migratory but I seldom see them in the summer. Now they are back with their raucous calls. I think they’re such fun birds and very attractive.

Fall seems to have officially arrived in Phoenix. Our days are cool and pleasant now and birds are active.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

What a Month!

It’s been a heck of a month…globally, nationally, personally…so I’m just going to post some cats and birds and hope things get better all around.

Ferguson:

Bouche:

Bouche and Callie:

Torti:

Tortoise. Shell. Tortoiseshell.

Birds…

Adult and Juvenile Verdins

Anna’s Hummingbirds, female and male

Harris’s Hawk

Rosy-faced Lovebird

“Cats are such gossips!” Curve-billed Thrasher

And a bonus Leafcutter Bee, only the males have green eyes.

March for Peace

Cat of Peace

No, I wasn’t in a March for Peace. I’m not aware of any around lately but I have been thinking about Peace, as I know a lot of us are. Our house got a facelift and this peace sign is now on the front. A guy named Mitch, who did the rest of the work on our house, made it. It’s about 3 feet in diameter.

This is a brushed aluminum sculpture my mom had in her house and now I have it. It was made by John Mishler. It was actually the model for a larger one that my mom commissioned him to make for my parents’ church after my father died in 1997. Technically, it’s the Descending Holy Spirit but now it’s the Dove of Peace.

And even this Curve-billed Thrasher got into it, he’s the Peace Enforcer:

Ferguson is not only the Cat of Peace, he also made a half-hearted attempt to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

Some Honey Bees and wasps have been pollinating around now that spring has arrived in Phoenix.

And the Anna’s Hummingbirds have been busy, chasing and eating:

Plus many others including this Curve-billed Thrasher and Gila Woodpecker:

And, lastly, this is entitled: “You’re right, I found my grill.” Starring Ferguson, of course.

So that is my March for Peace…