Sunday, June 15, 2014

Baby Birders

(Birder: someone who seriously pursues the hobby of bird watching.)

San Luis Obispo County is a popular destination for a large variety of birds due to the wide range of habitats - both sea and land - and many areas around the county are wintering spots or stomping grounds for these birds. Or, perhaps like us, after visiting SLO county they've returned to stay and make it their home.

Each January, Morro Bay hosts the annual Morro Bay Winter Bird Festival. This year we stopped by for one of their talks, "Meet the Raptors" by the Pacific Wildlife Care. We were hoping to see an eagle up close; we were spotting a Golden Eagle hanging around our property. They didn't have an eagle but they did have other birds of prey being cared for at the wildlife rehab center.

Peregrine Falcon

Red-Tailed Hawk

Turkey Vulture

We see birds of prey on a daily basis: red-tailed and red-shouldered hawks, turkey vultures, and the occasional eagle. If they seem too close we call the free-ranging Girls closer to home.

It was slowly in the making but we've become amateur bird watchers. It's funny but I know the exact moment we realized it. One afternoon, while sitting out on The Vista, The Man and I noticed a brown bird hopping around on the ground in front of us. We didn't recognize the bird with it's very long curved beak. We were intrigued and looked it up - California Thrasher.

It doesn't take much effort for us to watch birds. We just have to look out the windows or take a stroll outside. 

American Robin and Steller's Jay

Mama turkey with babies (poults)

Truthfully, it's oddly exciting when a new bird shows up at the feeder ~ ~

Good morning, Black-headed Grosbeak!
Howdy, Hooded Oriole (female)!
Welcome, Nuttall's Woodpecker!