Wednesday, March 04, 2015


There is definitely a feeling of Spring in the air today, and despite the snowstorm we all groaned about yesterday which ended in freezing rain, the heaps of snow are now quickly melting and casting a haze in the air. The temperatures will be fluctuating throughout March. Today was +2C!! Plus 2!! But tomorrow we're supposed to divebomb again. I figured today was a good opportunity to head to the marsh and see what I could find.

Geese were the first to welcome me. But I didn't want to waste my birdseed on the large birds today. I'm running out of seeds at home and won't be going to the store until the weekend, so I saved most of my seeds for the little guys.

The black, grey and red squirrels were out in force and the bird feeders that are provided all had squirrels sitting inside them scarfing down the seeds people had left.

Plentiful cardinals were following me, but they are far too shy to come to my hand.

This cardinal (above) was so bright compared to the other females. 
Do you see the heart behind her made of wild cucumber vine?

The chickadees were out in droves and chased me around the woods begging for seeds. I couldn't refuse them they're so gosh-darned cute! I even had a woodpecker come to my hand, but didn't take a photo of that as I didn't want to scare him. But here he is on the tree ... a downy woodpecker ...

Now you would think having a woodpecker eat seeds from your hand would be a bit terrifying with that long beak. However, although they can blast into trees with their sharp bill, they are very gentle when picking up seeds. He didn't stab me with his beak, but gently picked them up and flew away. He returned about five times. I just loved that, and he is so very pretty close up!

As I walked along, I noticed there was quite a commotion going on further up the path with a bunch of tom turkeys. I don't know if it was the lighting, or if the males' colouring brightens up in springtime, but their heads were quite brilliant today!

Aren't they bizarre looking?

As I say, there was a commotion ahead, and I quickly walked up the path to see what they were up to.

Male strutting was going on, and the toms were fighting each other. It was strange to watch, there were no females around, just these silly toms all boasting about who was better looking etc. They would push into each other and wrestle with their beaks, beat each other with their wings and duck under and over each other. It was crazy stuff!

Here are a few ready to make a turkey sandwich ...

Then they started grabbing each other's faces! Oh yeah, nasty stuff.

Then one bright bird decided he was going to show off his beautiful tail feathers. 
He fanned out his tail, and plumped up all his feathers and strutted around in a circle. 

Then they all wanted to show of their lovely tail feathers, so strutting around in circles with tails fanned out became the new game, with a bit of face chewing and pushing and shoving for good measure.

They were quite entertaining, but all this male ego fighting and strutting was completely wasted on the females. They were all gathered around eating seeds far from the males. But I enjoyed the show and told the boys I would share their antics on my blog. 

Now I'll leave you with a brilliant photo of a male cardinal ... trust me, that's him ;)

Thanks for stopping by!


Linking up with ...


  1. They are all such brilliant photos Wendy! I loved that shot of the second squirrel and those close ups of the turkeys are so rich with their vibrant colors!!! Nothing like free entertainment!!! And I swear we follow the same weather patterns here! Cold and freezing rain yesterday and today and tomorrow BUT a warm up to come this weekend!!! So excited!!! Here is to spring!!! Nicole xoxo

  2. Hi Wendy......
    You certainly got some more beautiful shots....
    Those Turkeys are crazy! Must be practicing for the Spring! *wink wink*
    Enjoy your week....
    Linda :o)

  3. Lovely captures! The squirrels are adorable.

  4. Brilliant photo's Wendy how lovely to have all this wildlife near by, they must be getting to know you by now they will be saying here comes the lady with the food and that funny clicking contraption she points at us. I think you are brave to let the woodpecker eat seeds from your hand but it's amazing that it did. Have a great day. :) xxx

  5. Very brilliant !!! Amazing pics !!!! I love them !!!!

  6. As always, such stunning photography Wendy.

  7. Hello Wendy, what a cute post. I love all the birds, especially the Cardinals.. I am in awe of you being able to hand feed the birds. And the turkey shots are awesome..I like the shots where they are strutting and showing off their pretty tail feathers.. Great post and photos.. Have a happy day!

  8. i really enjoy the word Tomfoolery ... makes me smile ... i had to see what you were going to say. i enjoy the turkey shots. we get to see wild turkeys around here all the time. amazing birds. have you ever seen the movie of the man who raised turkeys from babies? very cool. i found it online "My Life as a Turkey" it was 1st one PBS. such a good story. please check it out you will love it. if you are bird lover. ( :

  9. Nature is a cruel beast at times! Great shots of critterville..and the heart is wonderful!
    Jane x

  10. Now that was an interesting walk! Don't see that kinda action every day. Hilarious to watch the turkey boys strutting their stuff with no female around to care. Ha! Warm wishes, Tammy

  11. I can't believe you got a woodpecker to eat from your hand!! And what an experience that was to see the turkeys doing their rituals like that. I must confess that I'm more than a little bit jealous, especially since you threw in some cardinal pictures. :-)

  12. I'm glad you did share the tomfoolery of the male turkeys, boys will be boys no matter what species!
    I've seen numbers of turkeys in the fields but haven't had my telephoto lens to capture them. I just hope they keep safe from the coyotes roaming looking for food.

  13. These are such great photos, Wendy. I really feel like I was there too. And a wild bird eating from your hand, how interesting! You've reminded me of Snow White. :) I hope the weather warms up soon, it's been a long, cold slog there this year. Take care and enjoy the weekend.

  14. Hi Wendy, I enjoyed your photos, particularly the tom turkeys. I was enchanted by a woodpecker eating from your hand. When we were in Colorado, there are birds that beg for seeds, peanuts, etc. and will take them out of your hand. I was interested to hear that you have red, grey, and black squirrels. We only have red ones in our area. Great post, Wendy!

  15. You are surrounded by gorgeous wildlife aren't you? Those turkeys are characters. Love all their amusing antics. That is good news that the temperatures were on the plus side of the thermometer....let us hope that is the beginning of some warm, Spring days ahead.

  16. Your pictures are wonderful!!!! You are such a great wildlife photographer. The turkeys on the other hand - what a bunch of mad things they are!! The girls definitely had the right idea to carry on eating rather than worrying about having a fight with each other. Their colours are spectacular though! xx

  17. Wow what gorgeous photos of the birds and turkeys! Wow I am amazed at what great photos you took. We still have a lot of cold weather with snow. Thanks so much for sharing the great shots!

  18. Wendy.
    These are such cool photos! Yes, these turkeys are crazy looking-such odd creatures, I can't believe we eat them...Oh well, on another note-the cardinals are gorgeous-beautiful shots all around!

  19. Oh those young boys! If a big old tom had come along, they'd all have been taken down a peg.
    I'm glad you got a break in the weather, Wendy! I was told by a friend in town that we'll be getting some sunny days soon, but I was afraid to ask "how soon exactly?" Doesn't matter (much)...we're over the hump of Winter and a nice sloooowwww thaw would be helpful.

  20. Wonderful photos - those turkey shots are amazing!

  21. Hello Wendy, I loved this post and thanks for linking up. Have a happy Sunday and week ahead!

  22. These are amazing photos! I love the cardinal and the other birds, but that one closeup of Tom Turkey is incredible! Plus, capturing their male posturing and fighting is wonderful! Just really great shots!

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