Tag Archive: cardinal


One Photo Each Month – 2012


I may have failed miserably in taking one photo a day, but I do at least have one for each month. This really does capsulize my year…:

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1. January: A pretty little downy woodpecker in the Whooping Crane Pond Conservancy on Hilton Head Island
2. February: A great blue heron up in the tree in our back yard in Hilton Head – calling to his mate. He built a nest there, and I got to watch it throughout the spring
3. March: Before the bluebirds found the bluebird box, the nuthatches were checking it out…!

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1. April: The bluebirds ultimately tried to raise their babies in the bluebird box. Unfortunately they did not make it…
2. May: The HMS Bounty — at the Tall Ships Celebration in Savannah, GA. The Bounty ultimately sunk in Hurricane Sandy off of North Carolina
3. June: A cardinal at a tree near our feeders – on Long Island

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1. July: Kezar Lake — view from the dock out to the islands
2. August: An amazing sunset and crescent moon off Wickapogue Road
3. September: At Operation Migration Crane Fest. The whooping crane chicklets after training behind an ultralight aircraft – taken from the blind in White River Marsh Wildlife Refuge in Berlin Wisconsin, where the birds had their training this summer. They are being fed grapes by their handlers. they have since migrated behind the ultralights and are now at St. Marks Wildlife Refuge in Florida.

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1. October: Storm Sandy wreaks havoc in our back yard. Our cedar tree is gone
2. November: a short hike to Valley Green over Thanksgiving week – this is the covered bridge
3. December: Christmas in Hilton Head – with Misty kitty looking on.


Yet again I’ve allowed myself to get way behind on the posting of my photos, and will try to catch up now. I admit – I missed taking a photo during one of the days during this time. Much has happened since I last posted. I’ve returned from a wonderful visit to my friends Claire and Terry. While there, I attended the North Georgia Conference of the United Methodist Church on the day that the new retirees made 3 minute speeches capsulizing their ministries. Terry is now retired, and I was there and took photos while he spoke and Claire stood next to him. It was a moving experience to be a part of their transition to “retired status”.

We also had dinner in a Japanese steak house at their hibachi grill and on another day we went to “Mark of the Potter” gift shop to check out their hand crafted pottery. But, most of all, I just enjoyed being with Claire and Terry in their lovely new home which they purchased a few months ago for their retirement years. It’s beautiful and a house which just screams “I’m home” when you’re inside. It’s also not far from a National forest so birds and wildlife are never far. At dusk it’s not uncommon to see deer scampering through the yards in the neighborhood.

Now that I’m home, it’s back in mundane routine. There are days when I am at a loss as to what to photograph, as I fear I’m repeating myself. Same subject, just different day. Maybe I am, but often the second photograph reveals something new I didn’t see the first time, so there is nothing wrong with that, either. there also have been days I’ve not been in the mood to take photos, but that is also part of the process – to push myself even when I don’t want to bother. On one day my photo was taken close to midnight.

So … with that – I’ll pick up where I left off:

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365 photo #163 (June 11). This was one of the nights we went to the Japanese Restaurant “Kiku’s” – and I took pictures during the show. This is taken when the chef piles onion slices in the shape of a volcano, and then lights it to allow smoke and flames to come from inside so it truly appears like an erupting volcano. You can see our main course is also cooking at the same time!

365 photo #164 (June 12) – EPIC FAIL. No photo taken

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365 photo #165 (June 13) – This was the day we were at the North Georgia Conference of the United Methodist Church. This was a globe from a world missions booth. The dove is a symbol of peace, and the globe has Africa facing the outward. I took many photos of Claire and Terry but not sure they should be posted, as they were taken particularly for them.

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365 photo #166 (June 14) – this photo was taken at “Mark of the Potter”, which is located right along a flowing stream. In fact there is a balcony in the shop that looks over this stream. What a beautiful setting!

Bonus photos for this day:

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1. The rushing stream
2. I love this sign 🙂 It pretty much gets the message across from the trout’s point of view!

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Both photos were taken near Claire’s feeders outside her front door…
1. male goldfinch
2. female cardinal

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365 photo #167 (June 15). I left Claire and Terry’s on this day and this photo is taken at the Hampton Inn motel where I stayed that night. I was on the 4th floor – and it was an interesting view at sunset. Sometimes high tension wires can be photogenic!

Bonus photos from the motel:

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1. view as a whole from my room
2. purple clouds of sunset – also from the room.

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365 photo # 168 (June 16) – These are the coffee mugs I purchased from “Mark of the Potter”. I love the shape, and they are very comfortable to hold, not to mention that they hold a lot of coffee, which is a requirement for a coffee mug for me!

I just checked – and according to my camera, I technically took this photo at 12:03 a.m. on June 17, but I’m going to count it as June 16th!

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365 photo #169 (June 17). Periodically I must make sure the kitties are subjects for the photo of the day. This is Felix lying on one of his favorite beds, on the back of the couch where we’ve placed their fleece beds. 🙂

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365 photo #170 (June 18) Late afternoon sun looking out over our front yard. You can see the shadow of the top of the house on the lawn at the bottom of the photo, plus our arbor vitae, and the birch tree to the right in the photo.

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365 photo #171 (June 19) – male and female cardinal ground feeding under the feeders.

Two bonus photos of male cardinals near the bird feeders out back:

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365 photo #172 – (June 20). This is not that great a photo, as I had to take it out a rather dirty window. the deer is at the edge of our property all set to dart away through the bushes. If I’d tried to go out, I’m sure this very skittish deer would have been long gone and the photo would never have happened. I messed with contrast and saturation to make it a bit more clear, but it still feels a bit distorted. At dusk we have so many deer who frequent our yard. The hedge in front of our house has been pretty much decimated by the deer this year, and we have to do something about planting something else — making sure it’s something deer don’t like to eat!

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365 photo #173 (June 21) Our hydrangea is beginning to come out!! More photos will come later of these!

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365 photo #174 (June 22 – yesterday) I was not in the mood for photography yesterday and I don’t know why. So – later in the evening I took a photo of the soda I was drinking – black cherry Fresca. It’s my favorite flavor. Sadly it’s next to impossible to get in Hilton Head. I bring down a few 12 packs, and then drink it sparingly while we’re there.

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365 photo #175 (June 23 – today). This is a view of our side yard (I’m standing in the front yard) showing the brick walkway which goes up to the front of our house, and a section of our driveway. It was a gorgeous day today!

And – that completes the photos – – until tomorrow, of course. Until then….!

Calm Days


Life slowed down quite a bit after our trip to the Blue Ridge Parkway. I surely needed the slow down as so much of the previous days were spent traveling or in the car. My photos reflect the “calmness” of our days. It’s so nice to have relaxing “girlfriend” time…!

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365 photo #160 Friday, May 8 – a beautiful Bromeliad plant which Terry and Claire have potted on their front porch. What a gorgeous flower. I had trouble duplicating the color of the flower, as my photos came out too dark, but with messing with some camera settings, as well as a bit of post editing, I think it is close to what I know it to be. I have found that often the color red is more difficult to take accurate to the actual shade it is in the world.

A few quick bonus photos from that day…

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1. A female house finch – in staging area for the feeders at Claire’s house
2. a male cardinal – also in the staging area.

Claire and Terry are in the process of retiring from the Methodist ministry, and are moving from the parsonage of their last appointment into a house they purchased last December. One room, which will be their den is the staging area for packed boxes being brought over to their new house. The garage is another spot where they have boxes. There is unpacking yet to do….

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365 photo #161 – Chaos from the moving process 😦 Remind me never … EVER … to move!! ~

On Sunday (yesterday) I attended services at the churches (it’s a Methodist circuit of 2 churches) from where Terry will be retiring. When leaving the second service, I took the time to take photos of the most gorgeous Tiffany style stained glass windows, as well as some of the ceiling light fixtures.

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365 photo #162 – Sunday, June 10 – A portion of one of the stained glass windows

Bonus photos:

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1. Ceiling light fixture
2. The top of one of the stained glass windows

I have not yet taken today’s 365 photo….!


Let’s see if I can catch up … only to get behind again!

Tomorrow I’m leaving on yet another trip. Due to needing to go to PA because of my mom’s illness in March, I was unable to visit my good friend, Claire in North Georgia. At that time we were planning to do a spring piano / flute concert in her church. She ended up doing the concert alone, and I can’t redo that experience. However, I can finally do a visit, and I am leaving for her house tomorrow. Among other interests we share, we both are photography enthusiasts, so I will have lots of different photos to share for my daily 365 photo during my visit. I”m looking forward to the change of scenery and some different kinds of photos from a different area. Claire lives in a beautiful area, so who knows what my subjects will be for my photos!!

But – before I do – I am going to finally catch up on the photos that are not yet posted…

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365 photo #150 – (May 29) – House Finch in the black pine staging area for the feeders.

Bonus photos:

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1. Grackle – kind of a bully bird. I feed the birds only safflower seeds mainly because the grackles don’t much like it so they are less likely to be around to bully the smaller birds. However, they try…!
2. Male Cardinal in the black pine “staging area” of the bird feeders.

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365 photo # 151 (May 30) – a gorgeous sunset which gave the world an orange glow for a bit!

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365 photo #152 (May 31) – I believe these are crabapple blossoms which grow wild around our yard and neighborhood.

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365 photo #153 – (June 1) Misty lying on her fleece mat which we have placed on the couch above our head as we’re sitting. I will miss my kitties when I’m gone…

Bonus photo:

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I must include Felix if I’ve shown Misty! 🙂

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365 photo #154 (June 2) – Female cardinal hanging out on an old wrought iron railing that was placed there after being removed a very long time ago. I had forgotten it was there until I saw Mrs. Cardinal there that day. I can’t believe it hasn’t been pitched, as it was from a patio that has long since been transformed.

Bonus photos:

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1. Red winged blackbird — Sometimes they are “bully birds” to the smaller birds, but they are so pretty, I think.
2. Dove

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1. White Rhododendron. The white ones are the last to bloom, so these flowers are almost done for the season. They are so pretty and am always sad when they’re done blooming.
2. The white rhododendron bush

Yesterday I made a point of going down the street to where I’ve noticed a vacant field that’s had numerous wildflowers planted. I don’t know who owns the field and why they are planting these flowers. I think it’s a future development – but it is really pretty. I stopped by to take some close up and landscape photos of the field while it’s so pretty. I don’t know what many of the flowers are…

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365 photo #155 (June 3) I don’t know what this purple flower is, but blurred in the background is a large area of wild daisies.

Bonus photos:

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365 photo #156 (June 4) – suitcase packed — ready to go tomorrow morning – pronto! It was not much of a photo day today…

And — that brings me up to date. I don’t know how well I can keep this up while I’m gone, but there will be photos for those days to post later….

Laterz…!


I’m never going to catch up if I let days go by before writing any entries. I end up just as behind as ever! Photos are being taken and I’m happy to say that I’m finding almost as much interest here on Long Island as I did when I was in Hilton Head. The landscape, plants and wildlife are different but still beautiful in their own way. I have places I want to go for future photos – so it’s all good. I do miss Hilton Head, the lagoon, the beach, Great Blue Herons, egrets and bluebirds. In the last few days the island has been inundated with bad weather. Tropical Storm Beryl has dropped torrents of rain, and I hope there has been no flooding or wind damage.

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365 photo #141 (May 20) – a blue jay in the “staging area” trees – not far from the feeders. They don’t get on the feeders much but are basically ground feeders. Blue Jays can be such bullies to the smaller song birds (along with grackles and red winged blackbirds), but despite that, they are so pretty to look at with such beautiful blue markings!

A few bonus photos:

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1. The lilac bush is blooming!
2. More rhododendrons. We have several bushes, and they don’t bloom all at the same time, which is nice as it extends the season.

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365 photo #142 – (May 21) — Ooops – I nearly forgot to take a photo that day. This is a mug I purchased when I went into NYC to see CATS – the musical. And, ironically, Ray and I will be seeing it again tomorrow night at the Gateway Playhouse in Bellport, NY. I did not know this when I took this photo. I’m very excited as it’s my favorite musical. Figures – because of my love of all things feline!

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365 photo #143 (May 22) — Another day of not much interest in photography – so I took a photo of a photo. Not exciting, nor innovative or creative, but it is a chance to show off one of my favorite photographers, Dan Williams. This is one printed on photo canvas I purchased from him at “Springtime Made in the South” craft fair in Savannah. He told me that he took this in the Savannah Wildlife Refuge at sunrise. If you check out this link you will see just HOW gifted he is!! On the day I took this photo, I was also preparing to go to PA for my Uncle Ned’s funeral…

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365 photo #144 (May 23) — flowers at my sister’s house in PA

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365 photo #145 (May 24) — I arrived home from PA to misty, foggy, damp weather, and took a photo of the rhododendron bush that’s just outside of the living room window that looks out to our front yard.

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365 photo #146 (May 25) — It was another rainy day – and I took this photo of one of my lucite kitties which I have on one of my window sills where it picks up the light and interesting colors from the outside.

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365 photo #147 (May 26) — finally a clear day and I discovered the goldfinches have found our nyger feeder. Here is one, in all it’s glorious yellow summer plumage, on the trees just around the corner from the nyger feeder!

Bonus photos:

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1. Male house finch – in the staging area near the feeders
2. Male cardinal – also in those same trees

Not quite caught up — but I’ll end here. For now.


I took a few more photos on May 17th – so there will be bonus photos! I usually include them when I have trouble deciding what photo to choose on any given day.

That day was the first day for photos of the feeders that had been recently put out. It took a little while for the birds to find them, but once they did, they have come in droves as they fight over the precious few feeder holes! I feed my birds only safflower seed, as the grackles, blue jays, and red winged black birds don’t like that all that much. I found if I used a mixed seed, I had to add seed to the feeders at least twice a day! Now … that’s too much — and too expensive, too! A few days ago, I decided to add another feeder so that the food will last a few days before having to restock their food.

So — my photo of the day will be one of a male and female house finch posing on top of the feeder:

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365 photo #138 (May 17)

Bonus photos

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1. “The early bird catches the worm” — Robin in our back yard
2. A carpenter bee. This bee flies so slowly that I was able to focus on him in the air and get him pretty clear. Unfortunately we are going to have to get pest control for them because they are making their nests in our deck’s foundation – boring holes there, which is not good for health of our deck. (click this photo to see it larger)

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1. Blue jay enjoying seed below the feeders. They may be bullies to the smaller song birds, but they sure are pretty!
2. Red winged black bird – WAY high in a tree. I’m noticing that there is a bird (either a blue jay or red winged black bird) up there almost all the time. It’s like “their” perch. (click this photo to see it larger)

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365 photo #139 (May 18) — another rhododendron bud about to bloom.

Bonus photos:

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1. Our driveway
2. One of our rhododendron bushes – in nearly full bloom

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365 photo #140 (May 19th) Today was Male Cardinal day – as I saw so many around the feeders and the trees nearby. This one was waiting for an empty feeder hole to catch a bite…

Bonus photos:

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1. Cardinal in another nearby tree
2. And one on the ground under the feeder area finding seed there.

And … I’ll stop for now – and continue my update later.

I’m headed for PA tomorrow morning for the funeral of my uncle, but will just be staying one night. Yes — my mom’s brother died last week at age 97 😦 He was an amazing man: a scientist, an author, an artist, a sculptor, a birder, and a husband, father, brother, grandfather and great grandfather. He’s worth his own blog entry about his rich and full life. But – I am not sure about family privacy issues, so I’ll leave it at that. Just know he’ll be missed, especially by his wife, and that we truly are celebrating his life. My photos will continue – and hope they will chronicle those days…


To continue… We had another week left in Hilton Head after our wonderful walk – so here are some more daily photos:

On the side of our house on Hilton Head, we have lots of bushes, trees and pine straw. This photo is of a fungus of sorts that was growing on the stump of a tree which had been cut down quite a while ago… It’s amazing what these things can grow from, and the intricacies of the growth. At the time I took the photo, everything was wet, but it was from our sprinkler system, which is turned on when things are dry.

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365 photo #123 (May 2) — the fungus on the tree stump
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365 photo #124 (May 3) — A female cardinal in the pine tree. I stand quietly in the yard and wait for these birds to become visible in a tree…
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365 photo #125 (May 4) — sweet Felix on the couch in the great room

On Saturday, May 5th Ray and I went to Savannah to see the Tall ships, and I’ll leave those photos for their own entry.


Ok … I admit it. I’m addicted to birds! I never thought this would happen, as this interest has come later in my life. When I was a child, I could not identify any birds, except maybe a robin. My mom had feeders outside her kitchen window, but I didn’t watch or even notice them much. Then a few years ago, I met my bird loving best friend, Claire, then took up photography. Though I’m still very ignorant on bird identification, I’m slowly learning the names of the birds in my backyard.

With that said, my 365 photo will — again — be of the female bluebird bringing in a huge bug to feed the babies. You can click on this photo and see it much larger. And, it was especially exciting for me to note that when I stood somewhat close to the bluebird box, I could hear the babies chirping – probably begging for food. At that time, I don’t think either parent was inside, as I had been watching them go in and out, and the babies were probably calling for them. My box is a side loading box, and it would be much too invasive for me to watch.

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365 photo #116

I hope we have not left for Long Island before they fledge. Since I’m not sure when the eggs were laid, nor when they were hatched, it’s hard to predict, but I think it will be iffy that we’ll still be around. We have only 1 1/2 week left here. What a bummer to leave in the middle of this!

Also — the great blue heron is still sitting on the nest, but the male isn’t around much anymore that I have seen (unless they switch roles).

Bonus photos:

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1. A male cardinal in the bush — letting himself be seen in the bright sun!
2. The one non bird photo — some weeds growing by the edge of the lagoon

I cannot believe how many birds are flying around our yard. I go out with my camera – or not – and stand quietly and they are flying – almost as if in a frenzy. They are feeding on the grass, and flying back and forth from the trees on either side of the yard, often stopping off at the feeders to have a nip of seed. I can hear them in the trees calling to each other – but usually can’t find them. These birds are busy and very focused, and sometimes squabbling for “turf” or “territory”. I suspect we have lots of nests around, and these birds are busy trying to feed and raise babies. Except for the great blue heron and the nest in the bluebird box, I don’t know where the other nests are. The seed in the feeder is being eaten faster than ever before. Even though there is great activity, and they are more visible than usual, they are very hard to photograph, as they are just out of sight, or extra skittish if in sight.

Today’s 365 photo will be what I believe to be a juvenile male cardinal. This is the same cardinal who was one of yesterday’s bonus photos. It’s my opinion that he’s brighter than a female cardinal – and I see some red on his belly and side making me think that his color is changing. But — I am only guessing. Check out the seed he’s dropping from his mouth! 🙂 (Taken from inside the house from the sliding glass door.

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365 photo #115

Bonus photos:

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1. This is not a well composed or good photo, but it’s an interesting one. I caught the female bluebird flying out of the bluebird box!
2. three birds on the edge of the lagoon. Not sure what they are

What happened to the warm spring temperatures? Today was sunny but rather chilly. Not sure it got above 65 – if that, and the wind sent the wind chill feeling like it was in the 50’s. I need to be very careful about my complaining, as my friends in the northeast are wondering if they will have snow. And – if the truth be known, I find this kind of weather enjoyable and invigorating. I do not love the heat of summer.

Today’s 365 photo is of another bird – but a different one than I’ve photographed before. For most of this spring I have been spotting a male and female Eastern Towhee scurrying around on our back patio under the feeders and camellia bush. They were never on our feeders as they are ground feeders only. However, no pictures have been forthcoming because my camera was rarely handy, or if it was, I didn’t snap the picture in time. They are quite flighty birds, never stopping to “pose” for my camera!

Today’s 365 photo will be the female eastern towhee:

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365 photo #114 — taken from out in the yard looking at the patio.

Bonus photos: a juvenile male cardinal (please correct me if I’m wrong – I’m not totally sure) and a male and a male eastern towhee:

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1. It’s my opinion that it’s a male juvenile because he seems brighter than a female cardinal. I can spot some red feathers appearing on his belly, and he’s a bit smaller than an adult cardinal, too.
2. This photo of the male towhee. Contrary to what you see, the male’s coloring is significantly more dramatic than the female, but this was taken through the sliding glass door from inside the house, which kind of subdues it’s color somewhat. I added to the contrast and a little to the saturation, but something is lost in the translation.
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