Sunday, December 11, 2011

Zooming In on the Birds

For my birthday, the wonderful Mr. Red House got me a telephoto lens for my camera.  I took it out for a test run and had so much fun getting close-up pictures of the birds.

Red-bellied Woodpecker
This guy is a frequent visitor of the Red House Garden.  He first came to my attention when I pulled open the blinds in an upstairs room only to look into the startled eyes of the woodpecker on the other side.  He was perched on the edge of the roof holding a large seed in his beak.  I don't know who was more surprised, me or him!   He stared at me for a long second, apparently decided I was harmless, and then went about tucking the seed under the eave of the roof.

Here you can see red patch on the belly for which the Red-bellied Woodpecker is named.
I've seen him up on the edge of the roof several more times, sometimes peering at me over the edge of the gutter.   Red-bellied Woodpeckers will store food in the crevices of tree bark or fence posts for later.  They obviously sometimes store food under roof eaves as well!

Some other photogenic and common visitors to my bird feeder are Tufted Titmice, Dark-eyed Juncos, and Carolina Chickadees.

Tufted Titmouse
Dark-eyed Junco
Carolina Chickadee
With the telephoto lens, I could sit on the other side of the yard and still get close-up pictures of the birds at the bird feeder.  There were one or two shy birds who still looked over at me and checked me out before getting seeds, but most ignored me, as I was so far away.  This will also be a big help in identifying the various species that come to my garden, which has been a challenge for me with all the different birds.

I'm definitely going to enjoy this lens!


  1. What a great birthday present! I can see that you are going to have lots of fun with your new lens. It really changes what you can photograph. I love mine not only for nature photography but I can also get candid shots of my kids and they don't know I am photographing them!

  2. Great pictures! Have fun with your new toy, Indie.

  3. I saw the red belly ! I got intrigued by just seeing a red head at first... I loved the woodpecker, I don't believe we have them over here - mind you, I'm not too good at birds ! And happy belated birthday Indie !

  4. Beautiful woodpecker! I have so enjoyed the camera I received for Christmas last year, partly because it allows me a closer look at wildlife, something I was missing before. Enjoy your new lens, and a belated Happy Birthday!

  5. SHOW OFF!! You have beautiful Woodpeckers, Tufted Titmice, Dark-eyed Juncos, and Carolina Chickadees. I have STARLINGS!!! Off to find some paint xx

  6. Wow! Wonderful gift, beautiful photos, adorable birds.

  7. You are so lucky, the lens, the birds, I am envious :)

  8. lived in Raleigh, fed the birds, saw mostly fences, cardinals and one red bellied woodpecker. Moved to Mars Hill, work at home in front of french doors with bird feeders, get so so many different birds, I HAD to get a good camera. I even have wild turkeys. Today for the very first time I saw a Pileated Woodpecker just hanging out high in my tree but really close. I wish I had my camera. I hope he comes back. I am a webmaster, I hope to build a Mars Hill NC Bird Sighting Site! So cool. They are so beautiful.


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