Daily Archives: April 10, 2014

Birds of lower Westchester celebrate spring

IMG_2437Now that the weather is getting warmer, the birds are coming out to play, to sing, and to search for food. Lower Westchester county in New York has numerous wild bird species, each with its own unique bird call, and unique resplendent plumage. Like I sometimes say to visiting friends, if you want to see a fantastic fashion show in New York, you can’t beat going bird-watching.

Now I am not very good at recognizing bird species, either by their call or by sight, but I believe the above is a robin. I could be wrong though. If it is a robin, it is most likely an American Robin or Turdus migratorius, which is a species of the Thrush family. If it isn’t an American Robin, it must be another type of Thrush.

This is one of the most common bird species in North America, and according to Wikipedia there are 7 sub-species of American Robin. If you want to take a stab at guessing the sub-species of the bird above, be my guest.

IMG_2438

The noisy bird in the above photo is a member of the Woodpecker or Picidae family, or near passerine birds. This woodpecker sure made a lot of noise pecking into the trunk of that tree to search for insects. This was how I became alerted to its presence. I rarely see them.

I’m guessing that it is a Hairy Woodpecker or Picoides villosus, based on its black and white plumage and size. They live throughout North America, but particularly in deciduous forests.

It’s always wonderful seeing and hearing all these unique species while running or walking. Besides woodpeckers and robins, I also often see cardinals, hawks, and some other species I have trouble identifying. The unidentifiable species add a bit of mystery to the local forests, as I try to figure out at least which bird family they belong to. They are difficult to photograph.

I hope all you northern hemisphereans are enjoying the spring, and if you’re a southern hemispherean, autumn!