Birdwatching Dot Com
Birdwatching Dot Com Newsletter Early Summer Birding
June 2007

Dear Fellow Birder,

A doe trots across the meadow with a tiny spotted fawn running awkwardly behind. Baby robins on the lawn beseech their parents to bring food. Young adult purple martins have been exploring our purple martin gourds. Nature is in full swing, at flood tide. Ah, summertime!

in this issue
  • Allure of the Goldfinch
  • House Wrens Do My Yard Work
  • Dear Diane...
  • Our Angle on Scopes

  • House Wrens Do My Yard Work
    House Wren

    My garden does better when wrens patrol it. I knew this would be a good year for vegetables when the wrens appeared in my garden. They bring 1000 meals a day to their babies.

    And what do these meals consist of? Caterpillars off my chard and broccoli. Aphids pried from apple buds. Grasshoppers out of my cherished green beans. Moths. Beetles. Snails.

    Dear Diane...

    Dear Diane: My daughter brought home a baby bird. If we put it back where she found it, will the parents reject it because we have touched it?

    It's not an orphan -- don't adopt it. You might wonder whether the parents will accept it. They will. Putting it back gives the bird its best chance at survival.

    Our Angle on Scopes
    Angled Scope

    Spotting scopes for birders come in two designs. A straight-through scope lets you look straight toward the bird. Sounds like it ought to be perfect, doesn't it?

    But at Birdwatching Dot Com, we prefer an angled scope, like the one pictured at left. You look down at a 45 degree angle into the eyepiece, which tilts up toward your head. There are five reasons we find that the superior system.

    Goldfinch photo and wren photo ©Michael and Diane Porter

    Allure of the Goldfinch
    American Goldfinch

    Why are male American Goldfinches are so gorgeous? You'd think it would be dangerous in a bird's world to flaunt such brilliant yellow colors.

    But ornithologists have discovered that it pays off for a male goldfinch to be beautiful. The payoff is sex appeal. The brighter the male's golden feathers, the more alluring he is to females... and the more sons he'll leave in the next generation to carry on his colorful heritage.

    But the shiny black cap on his forehead plays a very different role in his life.

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