Through the Window: March 2023

A Mourning Dove and a Blue Jay face each other across of platform containing black oil sunflower seeds.
A Mourning Dove and a Blue Jay face each other across of platform containing black oil sunflower seeds.

March is all about the this-way-and-that-way dance of winter, spring, and mud seasons. Watch for migrants returning and spring behaviors in, well, everyone. Two things we especially like:

The “Oh sweetie” song of the Black-capped Chickadee.
And those Mourning Dove males who keep getting distracted from eating—instead, they puff up and pace after the females, begging for their attention.

March Bird List

  • Mourning Dove
  • Black-capped Chickadee
  • Blue Jay
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • American Crow
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • Hairy Woodpecker
  • White-breasted Nuthatch
  • Red-breasted Nuthatch
  • Red-tailed Hawk
  • Dark-eyes Junco
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Pileated Woodpecker (3/29)
  • Brown Creeper (seen through front door)
  • Song Sparrow (3/30)

(Bold items in this list are species not recorded in February 2023.)

If you are wondering, it’s often possible for us humans to tell male and female Mourning Doves apart. You may need plenty of light and time to watch the doves, in order to look for specific field marks and behavior.

And let us not forget other beasties! Red and Gray Squirrel, Eastern Chipmunk and Woodchuck. Awakening Groundhogs and Chipmunks are definitely signs of spring.

Might scale back feeding again

We began feeding in a much more limited way in 2022, due to avian influenza.  We may be using several feeders, but different ones from time to  time, as spring comes along—we’re reading news reports of avian flu continuing. While we don’t see domestic fowl at our feeder area, we do sometimes see wild turkeys, hawks or falcons, and sometimes have waterfowl on the nearby pond. We’d like to keep protecting them.

A few relevant links:

Avian Influenza Outbreak 2022-2023: Should You Take Down Your Bird Feeders?

2022-2023 Detections of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in Wild Birds :

Distribution of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in North America, 2021/2022 :

Avian Influenza Wildlife Health Bulletin from VT Fish and Wildlife Department :

Care to observe with us? Register for one of our upcoming events. See you soon!

Volunteers, we always have opportunities for you!

If you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Instagram, you’ll find us talking about bird news, sharing photos, suggesting events, and more. Check us out!

The “Through the Window” series is an informal record of observations made by staff, volunteers, and visitors. Anyone at the Museum may add to this list. Observations are usually through our viewing window: a large window with a film covering that helps hide watchers from the birds. We have chairs and binoculars to try, a white board, and many identification guides. Outdoors, several feeders are attached on a single, 8′ steel pole. A small pond, flowers and water plants, shrubs and trees add cover and (seasonally) other food choices . You can sometimes see what we see via our webcam.

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