Doesn't this Common Tern have the cutest tiny feet? We took this picture at Starrevaart, a bird sanctuary near The Hague in the Netherlands. Every spring during breeding time there was a small island full with these guys right next to a bird hide. It was great to visit the hide and see the terns busy feeding their young and hunting for fish. The island was overcrowded with terns and they sure made a lot of noise. They have small feet but big mouths. ;) Fun Fact: This bird drinks its water while flying, gliding over the surface and dipping its bill several times into the salt water. Like many seabirds, Common Terns have nasal glands that extract the salt. Pretty neat, he? Check out our cute Birdorable terns and gulls.
Blog Archive: February 2009
Photo of beautiful tree by boliston
The Baltimore Oriole is a bright orange and black bird that breeds across North America and migrates south in flocks to Mexico, Central America and northern South America. It is the state bird of Maryland and the Baltimore Orioles Major League Baseball team was named after this bird. Backyard birders can attract these birds with special oriole feeders, which contain the same food as hummingbird feeders, but are designed specifically for orioles: they are orange instead of red and have larger perches. Baltimore Orioles are also fond of halved oranges and grape jelly.
This bird received its name from the fact that the male's colors resemble those on the coat-of-arms of Lord Baltimore. When George Calvert, an English politician and coloniser of the New World, visited Chesapeake Bay in 1628, he saw the bird for the first time and was so pleased by its colors that he adopted them as his own. Later Linnaeus named the species the Baltimore Oriole because its colors were those of the Calverts.
I hope we'll be able to get these beautiful birds in our backyard this year. We'll certainly put out some oranges for them.
(thanks to Lori Larson for these nice oriole photos that we found on Flickr)
A new bird that we've added to Birdorable is the Hooded Warbler, a beautiful bird in the New World warbler family. These yellow cuties breed across eastern North America and winter in Central America. Males are striking with their black hoods and bright yellow faces. Hooded Warblers prefer shaded habitats and this may be the reason why they have larger eyes than most other warblers in the United States. The cute large eyes stand out boldley on its yellow face. Part of its scientific name, citrina, refers to its dazzling yellow color. This is our totally cute Birdorable Hooded Warbler.
Have you ever seen a Hooded Warbler?