Birds: Stories, Songs and Photographs


May 8, 2010
Bird Song Challenge #2:
This bird has been singing around my house for 3 days ,  May 6-8.  It is quite unusual- at least to me, having never heard anything like it before.  I know now what it is, but I thought some of you might enjoy both hearing it and guessing what t is.  If you have the answer, please contact me don't reply to this post - that way  it won't be given away for others.  I'll reveal the answer in a few days.  Enjoy!
Mystery Bird


 May 7 2010


The Winter wren is one of my all-time favorite little birds.I know of no other bird so tiny that can sing so loud and so long. Each spring I eagerly await his cheery bubbly song and no year seems quite right without it. One time as I was wandering in the woods, upon hearing a burst of Winter Wren song, I slowly approached the fellow and carefully sat down upon a log to catch the show.  Mr. Wren was very busy gathering moss from here and there and disappearing with it under a dead branch by the brook. In between forays he stood up proud on a higher limb to proclaim his prowess, and if I were a female wren, I don't know how I could have resisted him!  I was totally enchanted- one of those unforgettable moments that stands still in time, embedded in my heart and mind. John Muir's wonderful story about the "Water Ouzel" always comes to mind when I hear the Winter Wren-both birds having an affinity for water and lovely songs. 

 Here is a photo I took of a Winter Wren that ventured near my house one fall. 

And here is a bit 'o Winter Wren song, recorded near my house a few days ago. He's back!!

Winter Wren Song  


 May 2, 2010

I live in the "Upper Valley" -a region of Vermont and New Hampshire that encompasses 20+ towns including Hanover, N.H. and White River Jct. Vt. I have gradually become an avid birder and I've taken many photographs over the years, as well as made some field recordings.
For the beginning of May 2010, I have a little puzzle for you.  Can you identify this bird?  It was recorded on April 22, 2010. Hint: It is either a Red-eyed Vireo, or a Blue-Headed Vireo. Although it is early for the arrival of Red-eyes, it is not unheard of for them to be here at this time of year.  This bird is still singing in my woods and I expect to hear it all summer.



May, 2010  


It's Springtime!! (More or less- we did have a snowstorm the other day. ) I've been out "birding"- checking on new arrivals, delighting in feather and song. We also have a thriving local year-round population-Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, Hairy and Downy Woodpeckers, Red and White- Breasted Nuthatches, Purple Finches......

So this winter, a flock of Evening Grosbeaks arrived and are still here. We used to get 30+ birds. Now I'm happy to see our little flock of 7-10 birds.

Below is a little slide show sequence, showing an Evening Grosbeak, (male), feeding it's young.  I was able to witness this occasion and many like it right outside my window at my bird feeder. 


  1. I compared it to Cornell's recording here:

    Your recording sounds very similar, and "asks and answers" in the same way as their recording, but the pauses are a bit longer.

    I enjoy your photos.

  2. Thanks! I compared my recording to those on a CD that came with "Smithsonian Field Guide to the Birds of North America", with 587 dowloadable bird songs. There are slow and fast versions for the Red-eyed- quite interesting. I think the tone quality was different than the Blue-Headed as well as the sonogram.

  3. The Consensus, from several experts, seems to be Blue-Headed Vireo. I will post any further news to the contrary, though at this point I agree.