Friday, July 15, 2011

Bird Identification Needed Please...


Rumor has it that the woman who lived in our house before we moved in had an unholy fear of fire.  Whether or not this is true, I have no idea.  But I suspect that there may be some truth to the rumor because there are two large firebells in the house.   These bells would do an elementary school (built in the early 1900s) proud.  One is located on the front porch and one is located on the wall where our bed sits.  We disabled these bells shortly after moving into the house some ten years ago or so.  I figured that if one went off in the middle of the night, I would probably die of a heart attack before I would have any way of dealing with a fire.  We go with the modern smoke alarms now.

Of course, we have never bothered to remove these bells and the one on the porch has proved to be useful as a nesting place for barn swallows.  Probably five out of the ten years we have lived here, there has been a swallow nesting on that bell.

A bird took up residence again this year.  About a week and a half ago, I started hearing little teeny chirps coming from the nest.  Pretty soon the little head popped up.  Then soon after that, the baby was standing on the side of the nest.  When I saw that I naturally said, “Get back in there.  You’re going to fall.  What would your mother think?”  I am a mother after all and have a few mothering instincts.  But the next day, big and little bird had flown the coop.  I guess the baby was ready after all.

Now the dilemma…these were not swallows.  I am not certain what they are but we are torn between a Least Flycatcher and an Eastern Phoebe.  It kind of looks more like a Flycatcher but acts more like a Phoebe.  I got confused after I saw the pics I took.  After all, while the bird was nesting, we went out of our way to give her privacy and didn’t really do a lot of looking.  So, I am asking anyone who knows birds to help me identify our recent boarder. 

As an aside, the day after those birds left, I was looking out the window and saw a turkey walking through the yard.  We have turkeys pass through here on many occasions but this particular turkey was trailed by three little turkeys.  How cute!  I took a few pictures but the light was too low to get a good one.  I hope they pass through again before the babies get too big.





7 comments:

barbara l. hale said...

Yeah. We never bothered to take our holiday lights down. Bad.

d h Los Photographic Impressions said...

Might be a tree swallow.

vertizoo said...

I'm leaning towards Phebe. We used t6o have them in our barn every year... until my husband decided that we should keep our canoe down there. Then the neighbors' cat could get much closer to the nest up in the rafters of our under-barn and... no more phebes.

texwisgirl said...

i'm thinking phoebe. they're hard to pin down, but are good nesters around people - moreso than some of the shyer flycatchers. :)

that turkey and babies is so cute! now wonderful!

barbara l. hale said...

The consensus seems to be Phoebe. I think we had decided that too. I guess I was surprised because nobody beside swallows have nested there. I just expected it to be a swallow. But what the heck, whoever wants to use it, the rent is free.

Mike Lucey said...

Around here phoebes are grey with blackish heads, no blue at all. I vote for the flycatcher supposition.

barbara l. hale said...

Thanks, Mike. Seems we need to rethink this whole thing.