A Rare Visit
Not a great photo - I had to process it out of near blackness - it was an early morning shot that was too shaky-blurry without flash, but when I did use the flash it didn't quite reach them well so this image was very dark BUT -
I stepped out the door this morning to the sound of chatty birds making sounds I'd never heard before in my yard and looked around for them. As I watched, they rapidly followed each other to land on this patch of ground under my feeders, busily picking up fallen seeds. They looked to my unaided eyes just like House Finches, but those very rarely eat off the ground, and certainly not together in bunches like this.
My mind quickly turned to photos recently posted by contacts of mine who live in my same general area that I was surprised to see, as I'd only seen those birds in Alaska. But we grabbed the binoculars and a book and, sure enough, Siskins right in the yard! We couldn't see the yellow, but the markings were right and the sounds were totally wrong for House Finches. And now here in the photo we can see the yellow.
A happy start to a Tuesday! :-)
Pine Siskin, Carduelis pinus