Bluebirds in January

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It seems that every time that I get a chance to get out into the woods and do a little traipsing  around I will inevitably run across something that catches my eye, and piques my interest as being out of the ordinary. Today was no exception.

The desire to get back out on my snowshoes has inundated my every waking thought all week long, so naturally I’m wide awake at 4:00 AM this morning ready to hit the trials. Realizing that I had around 4 hours until daylight as I sip my cup of coffee I start to question my sanity, and wonder why any normal person would be wide awake so early on a day when they could otherwise sleep in.

Daylight finally comes; I check the temperature and find a chilly 18 degrees as I head out into the woods. I had broke a trail around my own property and across my neighbors as well last weekend, and now I’m delighted to find that we had enough snow during the week to completely conceal my tracks from last weekend.

While skirting along the edge of a swamp I stopped to catch my breath and take in the view of the sun rising through the trees ahead of me. Tiny sparkling crystals of snow caught my eye in the beams of sunlight coming through the woods.

As I started to push on through the snow after my brief pause I noticed some birds moving through the swamp to my right. I was looking somewhat into the sun as I watched these birds and I paused again nearly chalking them up as Juncos when in the sunlight I caught a glimpse of blue. To my surprise I was looking at a couple of Eastern Bluebirds. As I watched them I noticed there was a flock of them down in the swamp. Naturally I didn’t have the camera I should have had with me for such an occasion, but I still managed to snap a couple pictures of the birds as I gave them a few pishing sounds to try to coax them in. Not the best pictures I’ve ever taken, but identifiable none the less.

My best guess is that this flock has yet to have a need to go south given the mild winter that we have had to date, but I’m no expert. Regardless of the reason for their being here, I’m just happy that I was given the opportunity to get a look at them and share just a few minutes of my time in the woods with them. I’ll remember them for a long time to come.

Hope everyone gets some time in the outdoors this weekend.

~Mark~

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2 thoughts on “Bluebirds in January

  1. Eastern bluebirds OFTEN overwinter in Michigan –simply adapting to the food (small seeds, frozen grubs in sumac seeds-etc) that is here and giving up on catching small live insects. ( I have them in my my meadows and woods every winter–Oakland County) Same for robins–many of them spend the winter in sheltered swamps and swales where they eat old berries etc. People think both species fly south (some do) because they do not see them much until robins come back to lawns to slurp worms and bluebirds fly over thawing meadows during ice out. So is nature. Creatures adapt faster than we do.

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