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Autumn is but a memory. Winter is here to stay. When that first snowfall of the year comes it’s almost magical. Those fluffy white snowflakes fall from the sky coating the landscape. In that moment, everything looks clean and white. It’s so pretty that you look out the window to watch the snowflakes fall. I was doing just that when I realized that my backyard was full of visitors. I stood there watching, amazed at how many different kinds of birds were darting around, trying to get to the bird feeder.
I ran to get my camera. The light was not great but I didn’t care. I jacked up my ISO and went for it. I don’t know why they were all there at the same time but I just started shooting, trying to capture as many as I could before they flew away. I was using my 70 -300mm lens because there was no time to set up my 150-500mm lens. I hope to set up some kind of blind so I can use a tripod and the bigger lens to capture better close-ups of these little guys.
I have never seen so many male and female Northern Cardinals in one place. This bird is also known colloquially as the redbird or common cardinal. The bright red male cardinals are usually easy to spot and I would occasionally see them at the feeder in the summer. Cardinals don’t migrate and they don’t molt into a dull plumage, so they’re still breathtaking in winter’s snowy backyards.
The female would fly to the fence or a branch near the feeder and then fly to the feeder when there was space. The male was more aggressive and would fly right to the feeder routing anyone on it at the time. Then he would fly to the large Pine tree in the yard or out of the yard, which made him farther away and harder to capture. I will post a few more pics of the other birds visiting that day in my next post.
I was able to get this close-up of the female Cardinal but it is my least favourite shot. I like the pose but unfortunately the background is just a mess of branches. I cropped the image and blurred as much of the background as I could. Most of the images are better viewed in the larger format so remember to click on the image.