Purple Finches!

I saw a pair of female or juvenile male Purple Finches on a Sunday afternoon back in October.  They did not return and I was left thinking that I possibly may never see another one here again.  Thankfully, I was wrong.  Three Purple Finches (two males and either a female or first-year male) descended on my tube feeder on Sunday morning.  And what a sight it was...

In addition to this unexpected surprise, the white (not yellow) throats of some of my Yellow-rumped Warbler photos from this weekend caught my attention.  The white throat and white neck sides is indicative of the Myrtle subspecies that I've seen surprisingly little of this winter.

Yellow-rumped (Myrtle) Warbler

Outside of these two exciting and interesting developments, business has been good as usual.  My good friend the Brown Creeper made a return this weekend (despite repeated attacks from the stupid neighbor's cat).  A lone Pine Siskin (and sometimes two) is still feeding with the flocks of both species of Goldfinches.  Varied Thrushes are still patrolling the yard in numbers of 1-4.  They're among the first out in the early morning and usually come back several times throughout the day.  I'm typically seeing 2-4 Yellow-rumped Warblers and often both the male and female Townsend's Warbler.  Northern Flickers and Scrub-Jays are also still in unusually high number as well.  The only "down" species right now is the American Goldfinch... I'm only seeing 1-2 at a time.  Bushtit numbers are down as well (flocks of about 10-14), although this is to be expected, as they begin to mate around this time.

Male Townsend's Warbler

Female Varied Thrush.  They're getting bolder and eating off of the driveway now.

Female Lesser Goldfinch.  They're singing in the trees at dawn now, which means that Spring isn't far away.

I've heard that Rufous Hummingbirds have made their way to the coast.  I just may put up a second nectar feeder this weekend.

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