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Spring Sightings

2014 February 28
by Seth Inman
Blue Jay collecting nesting material by Dave Russell

Blue Jay collecting nesting material by Dave Russell

Have you heard of our latest challenge here at Celebrate Urban Birds?

It has to do with many of the clues that we notice as the days get longer, snows turn to rains, plants put out new buds, and insects start buzzing and crawling around. Around this time, as food sources and places of shelter become newly available, tons of birds begin to come back from their warmer winter abodes to join the brave species that stayed in North America during the past several frigid months!

Look for birds that haven’t been at your feeder for a while, or birds that have been regulars but are in the process of changing their wardrobes for the breeding season! How bold are the red patches on your neighborhood male House Finches? Have you spotted an astonishingly scarlet Northern Cardinal yet? If you’re in the northeast of the continent, you may have yet to see an Eastern Bluebird sitting on a local nest box, but keep your eyes open! A sharp lookout for birds like the American Robin pecking at the thawed soil for worms is bound to yield a sign of spring.

Common Grackle by Theresa Evans

Common Grackle by Theresa Evans

Our Signs of Spring Challenge encourages you to get outdoors and look for birds getting back to their non-wintry selves: courting for mates, collecting nesting material, pecking at fresh food, and in the case of early bloomers, raising chicks! From now until March 31st you have a chance at winning a birdfeeder, poster, bird sounds CD, pair of Opticron binoculars, or another great prize for your photo, video, artwork, story, or poem that somehow depicts a relationship between spring and avian life. Follow the link above to visit the Challenge page!

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