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Friday, December 28, 2007

Christmas Is For The Birds

The birds made out pretty good for Christmas. I guess no one knew what to get for me, so they bought gifts for them. (My back up computer went belly up, I could use a new hard drive.) Anyway, THEY got a birdhouse made of seed, and a Nyjer feeder with a large bag of Nyjer seed. They also got a forty pound sack of mixed seed, which is mostly sunflower seeds. My mother was going to get me a forty pound sack of Black Oil Sunflower seeds, but she got the Nyjer stuff, instead.
You can just barely see the Nyjer feeder here, hanging from a branch on the tree. The birdhouse is hanging from the suet feeder, here.
You will need to use the name nhpa, nhpa1, nhpa2 or nhpa3 and the pass is 'birder'.
I got copious amounts of candy, cookies and doughnuts. Just what I need! After eating all that, the tires on my bicycles will blow out!
I added a counter, provided by my ISP. I had tried it before, but it didn't update. I think it is working now. It seems to be a good one, reloading the page does not increment it.
Edit: I believe it does not catch the RSS feeds.
Posted by Dave at 10:56 AM
Edited on: Thursday, January 17, 2008 6:43 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding

Saturday, December 22, 2007


I have not seen any new birds at the feeder lately, but I really do not get to check it during the week. I did catch this winter shot of a sparrow and finch. There seems to be more and more sparrows showing up. The nuthatches have found the suet. I had some suet out for a couple of months last winter, but it went untouched. I have a webcam pointed at the suet feeder, but you have to be very lucky to catch any action.
Edit: this is now password protected. user: nhpa pass birder
Posted by Dave at 7:28 PM
Edited on: Friday, January 18, 2008 10:51 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding

Monday, December 10, 2007


This summer, while I was riding bicycle, I saw a pair of small, bright yellow birds. A couple of weeks later I saw another pair. Both times they were sitting on a fence rail, but they were many miles apart. I now know that they were American Goldfinch. This weekend I was trying to get some better pictures of my pair of cardinals, and I saw this little one I looked in the Field Guide To Birds In Pa, and figured it was an American Goldfinch. But I wasn't sure because, it doesn't look anything like the ones I saw this summer! I asked for help from the rec.birds newsgroup and they agreed that it is a Goldfinch.

All summer I had a pair of doves in my yard, but I hadn't seen them lately. Sunday when I got up, I spotted six of them sitting in my yard! See them here.

Posted by Dave at 9:06 PM
Edited on: Thursday, January 17, 2008 6:38 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Elusive Cardinals!

I found a couple of settings on my camera that made a big difference in the quality of the pictures. For one, the default exposure setting was not center weighted. The other was to use the RAW format. Up until recently I never even heard of it. RAW format is a lot more forgiving of the exposure. You can end up with a pleasing photo, even if the exposure is off. So I was trying all day Saturday to get a better pic of the cardinals. Every time I turned on the camera, they flew away! Sunday the window was frosted over. I was perusing the camera manual and thought I would try out the movie feature. I hand held the camera and caught a short video of the female. It is a short video, but it was still 17 MB! I found a free program, MPEG Streamclip, to compress that, and ended up with less than 2 MB. I moved this to a seperate page because it added too much to the load time. See it here.

Posted by Dave at 6:04 PM
Edited on: Sunday, January 06, 2008 9:48 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding

Saturday, December 01, 2007

More Pics

I am still learning how to use my new camera, so these are not the best.

Female Cardinal 

Male Cardinal 

White-breasted Nuthatch 


Posted by Dave at 12:21 PM
Edited on: Thursday, January 17, 2008 6:21 PM
Categories: Backyard Birding