I don’t know what it was, but all day yesterday my window feeder was like a Wendy’s drive-through at lunch time. In particular, a pair of house finches may as well have built their nest there. Every so often a pair of cardinals would come in for a bite, momentarily scaring the finches away. Once they even shared the feeder. In the past I’ve seen the male cardinal stay for long stretches, picking up seed, skillfully cracking the shell and reaping the reward of the heart of it. The feeder is positioned in such a way that I’m actually able to stand within inches and watch this process. It is fascinating. Yesterday, however; both male and female cardinal were shy and apprehensive about coming to the feeder. I did have the shades up higher than usual, so perhaps they sensed my presence more.
I was able to snap pictures of all the visitors, with the exception of a tufted titmouse who comes and goes quicker than a dragonfly. He did however; end up in my garage late this afternoon, and we had quite a time helping him out, but more about that tomorrow.
Two events at the feeder were so sweet, and I was disappointed that they happened too quickly to capture. At one point when the house finch pair were feeding, the male flew off. Upon returning about 30 seconds later, she stopped eating, he picked up some seed and fed her as if to say, “Hi, I’m back.” They then both returned to the business of eating.
The same thing happened with the cardinal pair, only it was atop a deck chair. They love to perch there as they plan their ascent to the feeder. She landed there first, he flew up to her with a seed and gently put it in her mouth. I know with cardinals this is a courting activity, but not sure with finches. I just have to believe it’s a gesture of affection as well.