Friday, December 12, 2008

One Lone Chipping Sparrow

I have had one lone Chipping Sparrow feeding at my feeders every day for the past few weeks now. Why is it still here? I watch for it each day and my haste in refilling the feeders each morning is with it in mind. I watched a Tree Sparrow yesterday and as I glanced away, from the corner of my eye, I saw a dark shadow swoop in and around, then it was gone. The shadow was probably a hawk, and just one lone feather drifted down upon the snow leaving an emptiness where the Tree Sparrow had been. A bird's life is very precarious.
Our weather has been varying from one extreme to another. Some nights it has been -18 º Celsius (about 0 º Fahrenheit), or more, and the ground has been snow covered. Then the next day we have experienced temperatures in the plus teens. Our ground has been snow covered three times, then the high temperatures have melted the snow away and I see the green grass of my lawn once more. This morning it is snow covered again, but there is a freezing rain warning out and a +12º Celsius (or 53 º Fahrenheit) is predicted for later in the day. By tomorrow our snow will be gone once more.

How is this little songbird managing to survive these weather extremes and dangers of such a season ? I watch for it each day out my window. And here is my most recent photo of the Chipping Sparrow below, taken this morning. Its still here.

13 comments:

Mary said...

Poor cold little Chipping Sparrow! He must be finding a warm spot of shelter somewhere and your food is certainly helping keep him alive. Give him directions to my house and I'll keep him alive until next summer for you :-)

bobbie said...

Your sparrow is a cute little guy.

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dAwN said...

Now you see it now you dont...poor little sparrow...Nice photos and story..hopefully your little chipper will stay warm and full.

Kay said...

Wow! You really are getting freezing temperatures. My daughter lives in Chicago and she's been telling me how frigid it is there, too. We plan to visit her next month for a monthlong stay. That should be interesting after 6 months in Hawaii.

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

The birds are so lucky to have you.That steady supply of food must make their lives so much easier.Your pictures are so interesting.
Blessings,Ruth

Deborah Godin said...

That does seem odd in such cold. I was trying without success to recall if we had them out west in the 'real' western cold. At least this little guy sounds well-fed and as safe as possible with lots of bushes around.

ramblingwoods said...

I wonder why it is on it's own...poor little guy. At least he won't go hungry

April said...

We've been having extremes in temperature as well, with lots of melting. But, we still have snow on the ground, and it snowed again last night. I'm pretty sure we're going to have a white Christmas here. :) Love your little sparrow!

madcobug said...

I hate it when hawks get the birds I feed. Poor bird all alone in all that cold and snow. Lucky to have you feeding it each morning. That is cold weather for such small birds to survive. Your pictures are great. Helen

Ruth said...

It is likely safer for the Chipping Sparrow to stay with you than to venture south at this late date. Excellent pictures. It is interesting that some sparrow species do stay through our winters and others don't.

Becky and Gary said...

Maybe this little sparrow is a scout, and has found a great restaurant. Watch for more of them to follow...

Beverly said...

Thank you so much for posting your chipping sparrow! I just saw and IDed my first one. You have cemented my discovery for me. Aren't they sweet little things? When I saw them before, and couldn't ID them, I called them Chipmunk-birds. Your photos are great!

I love the raptors and love to see them, but I just hate it when they capture one of the rare visitors here. I don't mind at all watching them pick off a house sparrow, starling or even one of the new doves here.

me ann my camera said...

Congratulations Beverly on your Chipping Sparrow id!! Isn't it just so much fun to experience the thrill of discovery. Glad that my blog photos helped you a bit.