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Spring

Great Blue Heron nest - it's getting crowded!

On the last day of a very sunny and warm May, this Great Blue Heron nest was bursting with life. Gregg Thompson took these wonderful photos at a heron colony in Everett, Washington.###All photos are © Gregg Thompson and may not be used without permission. read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting, photography

Anna's Babies

“Judging from the comments, baby hummingbirds rank right up there with teddy bears for cuteness,” says Mike Hamilton. On a rather "bleak" day of birding, Mike happened upon someone observing an Anna's Hummingbird nest with two babies. Lucky for us! That very morning, these chicks had been... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  photography

Merganser Mojo

Gregg Thompson found a Red-breasted Merganser in gorgeous breeding plumage at Edmonds Marina north of Seattle. This male was making all the traditional courtship moves. We hope there was a receptive lady around to appreciate his skill and beauty.Our guy is getting ready: his crest is lowered.Now... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  behavior

Birding in Norway - Summer Solstice

Finally Full-on Spring in TromsøTromsø had an unusually cold May, even for here, and the returning migrants were all a few weeks later than usual.  The birches, the dominant trees here, were largely bare still in early June, and the temperature was 5°C. Then, a wonderful period of what we... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  birding

Spring Migration Across the Globe

Each spring, millions of birds head north. From Ecuador, beautiful Scarlet Tanagers fly to the eastern US and Canada, many traversing the Gulf of Mexico, an arduous journey. Across much of southern Europe, Common Nightingales – small thrushes with russet feathers – are arriving, having traveled... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration

Turkey Vultures on the Move

Before we see or feel spring, we often hear it first — in the testimony of a Red-winged Blackbird, the energy of a Song Sparrow, or the serenade of an American Robin. But across much of North America, an earlier sign of spring is the return of Turkey Vultures. In the US, you may see them as early... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration

Woodpeckers - Some of Nature's Finest Drummers

Yikes! What's that bird doing, pounding on my house? In early spring, a male flicker may drum on a metal stovepipe or other resonant surface – a pole, a sign, the trunk of a tree – attempting to attract a mate and proclaim his territory. Many other woodpeckers do the same. Let's look at a few...A... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  breeding display

North with the Spring - Migration

American naturalist Bruce Beehler — inspired by Edwin Way Teale's similar journey in 1947 — is following the spring songbird migration to build greater appreciation for birds. In partnership with American Bird Conservancy, Beehler is traveling from the Gulf of Mexico to the boreal forest of... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion, migration

Spring Bursts Forth

People often say that spring “bursts” forth. But this seasonal change isn’t like flipping a switch. It’s more like a series of waves breaking slowly. Robins and bluebirds return north in March. During April, more songbirds migrate north from the tropics, adding to spring’s growing chorus. As late... read more »

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Common Eiders Favor Close Relatives

Some species of birds try to save energy by tricking others into incubating their eggs. But if the parasitic female is a related species, she may have an advantage. After studying the nests of Common Eiders, such as the one pictured here, researchers at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  nesting

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