The Last Bluebirds of '14
They have been trickling through recently. We usually see them in the hour after sunrise, probably after a night of roosting in nearby trees, as they busily search for insects to fuel more of their southward flight. And often they are accompanied by yellow-rumped warblers who are also insect-hunters.
The image below is a mountain bluebird in a typical pose. They perch on fence posts or objects of similar height and watch for movement on the ground.
We didn't see any western bluebirds, which resemble the eastern variety, after May this year; the ones we saw must have been headed north. A bit disappointing after we rescued four little ones last July 4 and raised them to flight status, whereupon we released them. One of those youngsters can be seen elsewhere on this site, labeled as "Peggy's Bluebird" in the Wildlife section.
What a life these beautiful creatures live! Constantly searching for food, as well as constantly watching for bigger birds that would see them only as another meal. Flying ancient migratory paths, in one direction to build nests, lay and incubate eggs and work insanely hard to feed their brood as well as themselves, and in the opposite direction to escape what was once cold. Amazing indeed!
BTW: This little one was probably fifty yards from me when I "shot" him. I cropped the original image down to 6x4" and resized it with Genuine Fractals back up to 18x12" and did some noise reduction with Noiseware.
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