Through the Window: October 2018

White-throated Sparrow, carved by Bob Spear.
White-throated Sparrow, carved by Bob Spear.

October is great, because it’s the month of the Big Sit!. That’s a day when we sit around with Team Loonatics and look for birds. They do all the hard work: cooking, listing, watching, identifying. We host them and are happy. Their list of birds this year doesn’t quite match our viewing window list (below), since we can’t always see from inside what they see from outside. It’s great to see and hear them all.

Some of the more northerly species are returning! Continue reading “Through the Window: October 2018”

Through the Window: October 2016

“And the leaves /come tumbling down” — well, ok, a misquote, but nice for this time of year. We have turned our autumn corner, from “open daily” to “open by appointment” — although our bird feeding continues daily also!

In October, we noticed these birds, fluttering, swooping, perching, or interacting with each other. Bold are those not recorded last month.

Continue reading “Through the Window: October 2016”

Through the Window: September 2016

The year comes turning, turning… the daylight shifts, as we roll toward the equinox and away. Birds shifting southward bring changes to our sightings. A few “winter” birds are popping up!

  • Black-capped chickadee
  • White-throated Sparrow
  • Mourning Dove
  • White-breasted Nuthatch
  • Hairy Woodpecker
  • Blue Jay
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • American Goldfinch
  • Song Sparrow
  • Red-breasted Nuthatch
  • Ruby-throated Hummingbird (9/7 female only; 9/20)
  • Rose-breasted Grosbeak (of note: a male, juvenile transforming to adult, 9/13; others seen throughout month)
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Dark-eyed Junco (at Cedar Hedge and under azalea, away from main feeding area, 9/26)

For more precise records, you can also see eBird data for recent years at the Museum.

Plenty of squirrels again: Red Squirrels, Gray Squirrels, and Eastern Chipmunks.

All observers can add their sightings to our whiteboard list! We’re here from 10am to 4pm daily, and earlier if there’s a bird walk. For those, check out our events page.  Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram too, for more comments, links, and observations!

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, bear-resistant 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.

Through the Window: December 2015

A little drama, as we waited for snow to finally appear:

Barred Owl with Ruffed Grouse kill. Photo by Allison Gergely for the Birds of Vermont Museum, 10 December 2015 . The birds are near the small pond visible through a conference room window.
Barred Owl with Ruffed Grouse kill. Photo by Allison Gergely for the Birds of Vermont Museum, 10 December 2015 . The birds are near the small pond in the feeder area, and visible through a conference room window.
  • Barred Owl (on December 10, the Barred Owl killed a Ruffed Grouse then dragged it down the hill. It was a little bit difficult for the owl!)
  • Black-capped Chickadee
  • Blue Jay
  • Hairy Woodpecker
  • Mourning Dove (more than 11 on December 10)
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Dark-eyed Junco
  • White-breasted Nuthatch
  • Ruffed Grouse
  • American Robin (on and under the crabapple, December 8)
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • American Goldfinch

Bold indicates those we didn’t see last month.

We also observed Red Squirrels, and Gray Squirrels—generally about 3-5  of the Red ones and about 6 or so of the Gray. Some small malls were caught on our nightcam, but we couldn’t identify them positively—the resolution was a little low. We suspect they were Eastern Cottontails, based on size, behavior, and overall hazy shape.

You too can watch from our window! Call, tweet, phone (802) 434-2167, or email museum@birdsofvermont.org to schedule your visit.

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, bear-resistant 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.

Through the Window: November 2015

It’s getting quieter around here… but is that due to the owl?

Bold indicates those we didn’t see last month.

Barred Owl in Feeder Area, November 20 or so. Taken with an iPhone
Barred Owl in Feeder Area, November 20 or so. Taken with an iPhone through hand-held binoculars.
  • Mourning Dove
  • Blue Jay
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • Hairy Woodpecker
  • Dark-eyed Junco
  • Black-capped Chickadee
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Barred Owl (during UVM’s NR1 class field trip, even! Also November 28)
  • American Goldfinch
  • Ruffed Grouse (2 seen and heard early in November. One was found dead near our viewing window on November 15th—a predator, interrupted? A collision? [Although we have netting over the windows to reduce the chances of that.] A grouse was seen in the crabapple tree November 24. This could be the other member of the pair?)
  • White-breasted Nuthatch
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Wild Turkey
  • Buteo spp., possible juvenile Red-tailed Hawk (tail not clearly chestnut)

We also observed Eastern Chipmunks, Red Squirrels, and Gray Squirrels. Didn’t spot the the Raccoons on our nighttime cam. We did hear far-off coyotes while feeding birds or listening to some webcam videos.

Want to watch from our window? Schedule a visit! Call, tweet, phone (802) 434-2167, or email museum@birdsofvermont.org. (Other windows let you observe what’s happening around the new boxes on the hedge or admire the growth of cover crops along the restabilized stream bed (part of the stream restoration and bridge phase of #BridgesToBirds).

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, bear-resistant 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.

Through the Window: October 2015

Wow, in this last month of our open-daily season, we recorded some unusual birds! Are they here for the winter? Just passing through? And for some of the common ones, where were they last month?

Bold indicates those we didn’t see last month.

  • Golden-crowned Kinglet (10/1 in cedar hedge*)
  • Mourning Dove
  • Black-capped Chickadee
  • Ruby-crowned Kinglet (10/2 in cedar hedge)
  • White-throated Sparrow
  • White-breasted Nuthatch
  • Blue Jay
  • American Goldfinch
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Hairy Woodpecker
  • Red-breasted Nuthatch
  • Dark-eyed Junco
  • Red-tailed Hawk
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • Cooper’s Hawk
  • Ruffed Grouse (10/20 in the crabapple tree  and 10/26 2 walking along the feeding zone perimeter and in the crabapple)
  • Northern Cardinal (10/24 m & f, just male on 10/27)
  • Purple finch (10/30)

We also observed Eastern Chipmunks, Red Squirrels, and Gray Squirrels, as well several visits from  Raccoons on our nighttime cam.

* Aside: We’re going to do some extensive trimming and pruning on the cedar hedge. It was deeply damaged by ice and snow earlier this year, and we’re removing much of the dead wood. Other changes include roost, wintering, and nest boxes (for birds and insect pollinators) and new plantings in the spring as well. Thanks to Volunteer EP for his help with this!

Come see for yourself! Call, tweet, email or schedule a visit by phone: (802) 434-2167 or museum@birdsofvermont.org. From museum exhibits to relaxing in our accessible treehouse to observing the long-awaited progress on the stream restoration and bridge phase of #BridgesToBirds, there’s always some wild thing to learn from or about.

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, bear-resistant 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.