• Blackburnian Warbler sings up a storm
    Because of its coloration, the Blackburnian Warbler has been called the most glorious of the whole family of warblers. A proper name for this beautiful little bird would seem to be the Orange-throated Warbler, but instead it was named after its discoverer, a man named Blackburn. This 5-inch-long bird, with its 8.5-inch wingspan, has a long body that makes the tail look short. Look for a flaming orange throat, a white wing panel, a black cap and orange above the eye.
  • A new dove dives into the bird world
    The Eurasian Collared Dove is a native of Eurasia, but it was released in the Bahamas in 1974. Like some of the other alien species that have been released in the Americas, it has experienced an astonishingly rapid population explosion. For instance, the alien European Starling has become the most numerous bird species in North America, creating havoc to our own native species that also require cavities for nesting.
  • This is one tough bird to find
    The Grasshopper Sparrow's habits, as well as its weak song notes are such that you are not likely to find this species of bird, unless you know how and where to look for them.
  • Shelby’s bird count tallies 61 species
    No one reported seeing a partridge in a pear tree, but birdwatchers that participated in Shelby County’s 40th annual Christmas Bird Count in December tallied thousands of birds and some memorable experiences.
  • The most beautiful of songbirds
    The Wood Thrush has been one of my favorite songbirds since I was able to shinny up a tree with no limbs, and that has been awhile. I remember finding this bird about 15 to 20 feet above the ground, beside Bib Beech Creek, below Salem Baptist Church near Southville in Shelby County. I wondered what might be inside and thought it sort of resembled a smaller version of a robin’s nest.
  • These birds are green, but not with envy
    The family of Vireos only occurs in America, which is highly unusual, and this family haunts the higher portions of forests, where it diligently hunts for insects in bark crevices and under leaves. The Yellow-throated Vireo particularly loves to eat horseflies, mosquitoes, hairy caterpillars off their tents and gypsy and tussock moths. Even though similar-sized wood warblers also inhabit this same type of environment, vireos appearances are somewhat different. They are bigger-headed, thicker-billed and slower moving.
  • Baltimore Oriole is pure royalty
    The way that the Baltimore Oriole originally was named is extremely interesting within itself. It goes back a long way and is just one of many attributes to this beautiful, handsome, orange-and-black songbird.
  • This Swallow likes the hollows
    The entire family of swallows are all so graceful in flight, as they perform almost all of their duties, totally on the wing. A welcome factor along with their grace and beauty is they help rid your area of pesky, biting insects.
  • This is a Veery serious songbird
    An old Handbook of Birds of the Eastern United States, copyrighted in 1895 and written by the late Frank Chapman, a noted ornithologist of that time, said, “The Veery appeals to even higher feelings; all the wondrous mysteries of the woods find a voice in his song; he fills us with emotions we cannot express.”
  • This bird is the Least among its type
    The Least Tern is the smallest member of the tern family, at 9 inches long with a 20-inch wide wingspan. It is widely distributed along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts in the summer. However, the Least Terns that hang out on the major rivers in the interior and in California are considered to be endangered. Because they nest on sand bars in these rivers, these birds are extremely susceptible to the fluctuation of the water levels. Of course, this can happen at any time and may come at a time when it is too late for another attempt at nesting.