Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

January 30, 2011

Picture Winter Day 30.. and then some

“Glimmers of Hope”

I’m not going to say it, but those of you who’ve been following this month’s photo prompt series can probably guess what I was thinking when I read this morning’s prompt: “On the days when you’re feeling like there’s no end in sight, what signs help remind you that change is on its way; that something new is right around the bend? Today, use your lens to seek out the kind of hope that you can hold onto until spring’s splendor comes knocking.”

Luckily, the neighborhood birds provided me with some great photo-taking opportunities this morning.  I mentioned yesterday that I changed my feeder to a more bird-friendly format, and the birds took little time making the discovery.  From my front window with the 55-250 lens, I happily clicked away.  The shot that made me happiest, which I submitted to the gallery today, was this one of a male house finch:

male house finch

Isn’t he cheerful with his red head and chest, happily posed on my near-by lilac bush – which happens to be one of my first shrubs with buds come spring time.  Definitely a little glimmer of hope, I thought.

In addition to today’s house finch and the downy woodpeckers and tufted titmouse that showed up yesterday, I was treated to a nice variety of bird visitors.  I think I’ve identified most of them, but I’d love for anyone in the know to either correct me if I am wrong, or give me more specific names of these birds:

yellow finch

yellow finch

I think all of the above are yellow finches in their winter “clothes.”


Some kind of sparrow?



blue jay

Bully blue jay.  All the smaller birds scattered when this one came to feed.

mourning doves

Even the mourning doves came cooing along


I have lots of these little mystery birds.  Anyone know what they are?

Even as I was treated to this lovely avian display, I couldn’t help thinking it how nice it would have been if the local cardinal pair showed up.  The day’s chores must go on however, and I headed out to grocery shop.  Coming back in the door, lugging the purchases, Meghan was bubbling at me, “Guess who showed up while you were gone!  The cardinals!  I tried to take pictures for you but I couldn’t figure out how to make it zoom in.”

Alas, I had left the 50mm on the camera after attempting to take some pictures of Cedric fascinated and chattering his “killer” instinct at the birds.  Meghan took several shots like this one:


Imagine how nice it would have been with the zoom lens attached!

The seed supply we sprinkled on the ground is about wiped out now, although the bell and suet still have plenty.  I’ll be sure to spread more seed soon (MORE SNOW forecast for us Tuesday into Wednesday) and hope that Mr. & Mrs. Cardinal make a return visit!


  1. Your finch and blue jay photos are beautiful! The cardinal photo would definitely have been very nice with the zoom lens – they seem to be escaping everyone this winter! I think a bright red cardinal with a snowy background is one of the most beautiful sights in the winter! I just ordered a Sigma 70-300 lens last night, I can’t wait to get it and start using it!!! 🙂

    Comment by Photo By Holly — January 30, 2011 @ 4:41 pm | Reply

    • Thanks Holly! New camera toys are exciting, aren’t they? I just ordered a set of extension tubes myself – can’t wait to start playing!

      Comment by Karma — January 30, 2011 @ 4:44 pm | Reply

  2. I’m enjoying birdwatching at your house! I think the handsome little mystery bird is a dark-eyed junco, and I was very taken with the mourning dove trio.

    Comment by Gerry — January 30, 2011 @ 9:18 pm | Reply

    • I’m glad you are enjoying – and thanks for your help in ID-ing the birds!

      Comment by Karma — January 31, 2011 @ 10:34 pm | Reply

  3. I think that the mystery bird is a Junco. I love watching the birds. I’m sure that mine need food! So nice of your daughter to snap a photo for you.

    Comment by Becky Sue — January 30, 2011 @ 9:54 pm | Reply

    • It was sweet of her to try to grab the shot. I’m trying to decide when would be best to try to get more food out there with this storm moving in!

      Comment by Karma — January 31, 2011 @ 10:35 pm | Reply

  4. Hi Karma!

    Top bird is a Purple Finch, Adult Male; yes, those are Goldfinches in their winter plumage; the little guy with the golden eye stripe is a White-Throated Sparrow, Adult White-Striped; and yes, the others are correct in identifying the Dark-eyed Junco.

    You’ve seem to have created a little bird paradise there! 🙂

    We have lots of birds hanging around as well but I just haven’t had a chance to photo them! AND, with more snow on the way (ugh…ENUF already!) they, along with the squirrels, are eating up a storm! (pun intended). 😉

    Comment by milkayphoto — January 30, 2011 @ 10:48 pm | Reply

    • I’m starting to wonder what we did to deserve all this snow! Was it enjoying last summer, far too much? Due to the piles of white stuff, I’m happily snapping away from the bay window.
      Thanks for the details on the ID of my little crew!

      Comment by Karma — January 31, 2011 @ 10:38 pm | Reply

  5. I knew Tracy would be your bird expert 😉
    The one in the first pic is soo cute, and so is the one in the 4th photo. I would crop #4 tighter and go vertical, that littole birdie just too adorable, to include so much else in the pic 🙂

    Comment by thedailyclick — January 31, 2011 @ 9:18 am | Reply

    • Thanks Michaela. I liked that little bird in #4 too. I couldn’t figure out how to crop it without hubby’s truck showing up prominently in the background though. Maybe I should take another look.

      Comment by Karma — January 31, 2011 @ 10:40 pm | Reply

  6. Bird feeders are fun and enjoyable for the birds and the people who fill them. Nice way to see an end in sight but…

    Hope you are well stocked up with bird food and human food for the next couple of days. I’ll be joining you, your sister and Tracy with the next waves of winter storms. Glad I got out last weekend, this weekend will be spent digging out by the sounds of it.

    Comment by Scott Thomas Photography — January 31, 2011 @ 5:00 pm | Reply

    • I know, huh? It doesn’t look like anyone in the northeast is avoiding this one. We’ve already used up 5 snow days, and an early dismissal has already been called for tomorrow, with school unlikely on Wednesday. Going to be going to school this year til almost July!
      Got birdseed in the garage, an extra suet cake tucked away in a drawer, and went grocery shopping yesterday. As long as the power stays on **crossing fingers** we should be good!

      Comment by Karma — January 31, 2011 @ 10:44 pm | Reply

  7. I love the finch. You really did a great job capturing him. 🙂

    The male cardinal has been eluding me. I managed to get him once or twice but the lighting was terrible and his red looks black. Hmph.

    Comment by Robin — February 1, 2011 @ 8:30 am | Reply

    • Thank you Robin.
      I’m hoping the cardinals will make a return visit while I’m stuck home in this latest snowstorm. Leaving the 55-250mm on the camera just in case!

      Comment by Karma — February 1, 2011 @ 11:04 am | Reply

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