Birds In The Snowy Garden

Eastern Towhee, male Northern Cardinal, female Northern Cardinal (above the feeder)

Eastern Towhee, male Northern Cardinal, female Northern Cardinal (above the feeder)

When yesterday’s snow let up yesterday we were left with a lovely 6 inches of powder, but freezing rain and sleet overnight brought an icy coating. Several more inches of snow are forecast for today.

Today the birds—amazing creatures—are back out in force at the feeders. Yesterday I took a lot of (mostly) blurry photographs of them as I enjoyed watching the garden’s snowy transformation. While I viewed it all from a safe and warm vantage point indoors, the garden’s feathered friends meanwhile were seriously hard at work finding food through all the daylight hours.

Snowy day Feb 12, 2014 4:15-3

Snowy day Feb 12, 2014 4:15 - Version 2

Looking closely at this colorful scene below there are at least eleven birds gathered around. Sitting at the feeder I believe is male American Goldfinch. I had just remarked to a fellow blogger at the wonderful site Petals and Wings that I had not noticed the males getting their yellow coloring back, but here it is.

Can you spot eleven birds?

Can you spot eleven birds?

The spirea shrub is always a popular place for the birds to wait close to the feeder. Yesterday it was like a bird condo.

Snowy day Feb 12, 2014 4:15-4

The blue hue of the gazing ball that sits in the center of the meditation circle disappeared under the snow.  When walking along the meditation path last weekend I thought I really must cut back the Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue), but now I am glad they are still here to add some interest.

Snowy day Feb 12, 2014 4:15

Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue)

People who are used to measuring snowfall in feet, not inches, will wonder why there is such a fuss about a little snow, but it is unusual to have this much snow in my area. More often is the scenario where there might be a dusting of snow, then the following day is sunny and 70°F.

Neighbors on our community email list were remembering the last such storm in 2002, when we lost power for more than 3 days. Indeed many in the state are without electricity this morning and the roads remain dangerous, with cars abandoned along the sides. Fortunately there is nothing pressing to do today but to enjoy the peaceful scenery.

Snowy day Feb 12, 2014 4:15-2

28 thoughts on “Birds In The Snowy Garden

  1. Marian St.Clair

    I love watching birds in the snow. The feeders have been busy this morning. I made up a batch of suet just before the storm and they have shown their appreciation by nearly devouring the first cake in a single day.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      I am snug and warm Pauline, but just heard on the radio there are 80,000 customers across the state without power on this cold morning. Feeling fortunate to be able to sit and watch the birds.

      Reply
  2. garden98110

    Like our bird friends, we are creatures of habit, too. Sunday we were walloped with about 6″-8″ of snow. Avalanche conditions for us, yet not much comparatively at all. For us gardeners, it is the sudden change of seasonal conditions, to which we must all adjust our habits. — The Healing Garden gardener

    Reply
  3. Michael's Woodcraft

    Great shots, looks like they are all waiting for their turn at the feeder!! 🙂 I put out 30 lbs of birdseed yesterday morning during the snow storm and I had to refill them this morning. I also put seed on the top of the snow for them!

    Reply
  4. P&B

    A big and beautiful bird community you have there. I hope your garden isn’t effected too badly by all this snow. I long to see your Gardenia and Ginger lily in bloom. I hope they’re fine.

    Reply
  5. Stephi

    I’ve really enjoyed the bird activity this winter. You have quite a collection at your feeders. Our goldfinches don’t have their color starting yet, but maybe any day now. I’ll pay more attention. Good luck in the storm.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks Stephi, I think the storm is clearing out. The sun is a welcome sight this morning. Birds seem to be showing signs of pairing up and scouting out nesting places.

      Reply
  6. Christina

    Your snowy garden looks serene. The birds must be very grateful for all the help they can get especially as snow is unusual in your area; it must be extra hard for them as they aren’t used to it either. Hope everyone gets their power back soon, being cold because there is no power is not easy to endure.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      The garden was looking so dull this winter I was glad to have the snowy effect for a few days. Now I’m ready for it to hurry away. Many are suffering during this big storm but we have been so fortunate.

      Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks Cathy. It’s been a luxury to not have anything pressing where I had to get out and brave the icy roads. Things seem to be clearing up. Rain and a slight chance of snow tomorrow, but by next Thursday we may have 69 degrees F./20.5C. That sounds more like it!

      Reply
  7. Casa Mariposa

    I’m in northern VA and we got about a foot or so and have more coming. I put out a great deal of seed and suet and noticed my backyard was packed with birds, too. Even a few giant crows/ravens showed up. I like the snow, It makes winter feel like winter. 🙂

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Glad you’re enjoying the snow. You had a lot more than we did then. It has been gorgeous. Today it was 60F and we had a lot of melting, but there is still a lot of snow in shady areas. A good snow does make it feel like winter–I agree.

      Reply
  8. bittster

    I didn’t expect you to get that much snow! Your post yesterday seemed more like a light frosting. Nice that it’s melting away so quickly, spring will be kicking in full force for you any day now 🙂

    Reply
  9. Donna@GardensEyeView

    Just catching up and didn’t realize you had more snow and then ice…yuck…hate ice. i’ll take the snow over ice….the birds are so resilient and can take the bad weather…they know it won’t last there 🙂

    Reply

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