About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Photo share: The Song Sparrow and the Dark-eyed Junco

It was so windy last night the birds were struggling to fly. Most took cover but I did see a little Song Sparrow foraging in the grass under the feeder, and hopping to the edge of the pond. He wasn't very shy. With a cat in my arms, we watched through the window as he took his time drinking around some left over snow. Then a little Dark-eyed Junco came around the tree and joined the sparrow. Both species like to forage mostly on the ground, sometimes scratching the soil.

We have Song Sparrows year-round in Michigan but we will also start to see some Canadian ones that spent the winter further south passing through from mid-March to mid-April on there way back to their breeding grounds.
 
Juncos have a similar migration schedule. The boys leave Michigan first in March and the girls are sure to follow later in April.

I was glad I got to see them loading up before dark. If they were rested and fed enough, they may have left soon after to fly further north. The Dark-eyed Juncos and Song Sparrows migrate at night at very low altitudes, which unfortunately makes them vulnerable to collisions with communication towers or other structures. My little stopover site may have been very important for these little birds to meet energy requirements.

Related Articles:
Song Sparrow http://song-sparrow.html 
Savannah Sparrow http://savannah-sparrow.html
Hearty little Field Sparrow http://field-sparrow.html
Be on the lookout for White-throated Sparrows http://white-throated.html
Sparrow bird with white head and black stripes http://white-head-and-black.html
Dark-eyed Juncos leave mid-Michigan http:/dark-eyed-juncos.html 
Do I need to change my bird seed when the seasons change? http://my-bird-seed-when.html

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