In addition to learning a new flora now that we're out East, I also have a new avifauna to work on. I've never been an avid birder, and am frankly a bit embarrassed by my general lack of birding knowledge. I have slowly been working to hone some birding skillz by attempting to identify all of the birds I see in or near our yard. I have started to keep a Yard Bird List over there ---> in the right sidebar (so you subscribed readers will just have to come look at my blog itself to check it out).
The birds so far are pretty standard for this area. The Downy Woodpecker is nesting in our neighbor's Oak tree, and had a territorial dispute with the White-breasted Nuthatch a couple of weeks ago that was very fun and interesting to watch. The Blue Jays and Dark-eyed Juncos have been making the circuit through our yard each morning for the past couple of weeks, as have the Cardinals a little later in the morning. I'm enjoying getting to know our avian neighbors a little better, and slowly work on my birding skills. Maybe by the end of winter I'll even have a handle on what the darn unknown sparrow hanging out with the Juncos is.
If you're curious and want to see some pretty photos of some of our local birds, check out this blog post by the folks at Shaver's Creek Environmental Center (just a bit south of us). If you've never seen a Tufted Titmouse you should really look at the photos to see what a cute little bird it is.
Oh, and I almost forgot! If you have a bird feeder and are interested in learning more about the birds in your area and conducting a little Citizen Science, check out Project Feederwatch. Lacking a feeder, I've opted not to participate this year, but they have some awesome resources like this poster of common Eastern feeder birds that I just stumbled across. I may figure out that sparrow yet!