The hummingbirds are here!

I saw one–Ruby-Throated, the only kind we get out here. Thrilled me to no end. I was standing out on the deck, resting after having done some heavy digging (and whoever warned me about the dreaded Yellow Clay, you were more than right) and saw a hummingbird in the neighbor’s yard. I was about to break into spontaneous cheering (see, this is why I suck at birdwatching) when it zipped over in my direction and began intently examining the potted red salvia two feet from my leg. I froze. It hovered cheerfully for a minute, ignoring me as some impossibly slow piece of furniture, and then zipped off.

So that was exciting.

The bluejay has brought a friend back. They were sitting on a branch, making aimless bluejay noises, and then one leaned over and picked something off the other one’s face, a very casual, crumb-brushing kind of move that the other one bore with resigned grace. I could practically hear “You’ve got something on your beak. Hold still…” “…sigh…” It amused me to no end.

Also spotted a bird on the ground with a brownish back and striped head–black and white, lots of stripes, very crisply defined, like a nuthatch, only more of ’em. The books would indicate that it’s a white crowned sparrow. I’m jazzed. I keep seeing new birds–I know they’re usually very common birds, and it’s ‘cos I’m looking, but now I wish I’d actually paid closer attention back in Oregon and Minnesota to the feathered critters comin’ through. Saw one yesterday that I’m stumped on–took a walk with my friend Kathy to a local lake, and there were a number of big black…thingies…in the water. They weren’t ducks, although they were definitely in that genre–they seemed to have longer necks, with orange? (I think orange) beaks. The only thing that looks close are double-crested cormorants, and my notion of cormorants is of ocean birds, not the sort of thing that hangs out on a lake in the middle of Cary. So if anybody has any ideas, let me know–I did not take photos, alas. Did see spiderwort blooming, though, which was snazzy.

Nature is gooood.

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