Camping Birds

9 Nov

We just got back from a camping trip.  We went to Buellton, California — on the Central Coast.  We had a great time there but the birding at the campground was limited.  I really thought I’d only be able to report that I’d seen crows.  Saturday night, it poured with rain.  In the morning, I took Ruby out for her early morning walk and had some trash to clean up as our trash can had been blown over in the night.  The RV park we stayed in had a dog park which was really nice.  As I had her out there Sunday morning, I was rewarded for my early morning diligence.

Well, good morning to you too.

Good morning to you too, oh you stunning Western Bluebird.  There were about six of them hanging around.  So lovely.

???

This bird was also there but I can’t figure out what it is.  It looks sort of sparrowy but I can’t find one in my Sibley’s guide that looks like that with the strong white wing bars, that coloring, and a black beak.  Anyway, if one of you is saying, “Well, duh?  It’s a . . .” Please let me know.

There was a flock of something else high in a tree that I could not identify.  Most frustrating.  And, no good pictures of them.  Sigh.

At least the crows were easily identifiable.  I’ve got that one down, at least.

American Crows

Gage had dropped a cube of butter while clearing the table.  I hadn’t picked it up and had kept Ruby away from it.  The crows took awhile but they found it.  They were taking turns coming in and eating huge beaksfull of butter before flying off and letting another one have a go.  I didn’t have the heart to clean it up — they were loving it so much.

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7 Responses to “Camping Birds”

  1. Laura 9 November, 2008 at 9:27 pm #

    Goldfinch?

    Lovely bluebirds… I’d like to see something other than the Eatern variety someday soon.

  2. Crafty green Poet 9 November, 2008 at 11:43 pm #

    it looks to me like a female chaffinch, but surely there are no chaffinches over there? I love the bluebird,,,

  3. jayne 10 November, 2008 at 3:37 am #

    Hmmm… it almost for all the world looks like my American Goldfinch here in winter plumage?

  4. Liza Lee Miller 10 November, 2008 at 6:24 am #

    I think you’re all right! For some reason, I got hung up on SPARROWY and never even looked at the finches. Doi! Thanks all! Oh, and Crafty Green Poet, I did look up the Chaffinch and yes, it looks very much like a female. According to Wikipedia, Chaffinches occasionally make it to the eastern US but I’d be most unlikely to see then in California.

  5. Miz S 11 November, 2008 at 7:05 pm #

    I wish I knew as much about birds as you do! You are awesome.

  6. Rick Wright 12 November, 2008 at 5:14 pm #

    An American Goldfinch indeed, a bird we see far too few of here in southeast Arizona! Maybe I need to get a dog like Ruby and I’d have better luck….

  7. caroline stafford 12 November, 2008 at 7:43 pm #

    Liza Lee,
    Looks like female American goldfinches that are currently visiting nyjer seed feeder on my deck in South Dakota, winter plumage. Take a look at a Sibley field guide, he does a great job with alternate plumages.
    Caroline in the Black Hills

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