The Birders’ Trail

The Local Birds Are Nesting

The Local Birds Are Nesting

View the full issue in the Magazine Archive Baltimore Oriole © Harry Collins|Dreamstime.com. American Kestrel © Menno67|Dreamstime.com. By early June the northern migration is pretty well over, the...

Wrapping up the Migration

Wrapping up the Migration

View the full issue in the Magazine Archive By the third week in May, bird migration is winding down. The resident birds are nesting or even feeding young. It’s time to check several areas where...

Whoo, Hoo, Hooo’s Home?

Whoo, Hoo, Hooo’s Home?

View the full issue in the Magazine Archive Owls are a fascinating family of birds. Most of them hunt at night and roost in some secluded spot during daylight hours. They are often heard but seldom...

Next Stop: Dauphin Island

Next Stop: Dauphin Island

View the full issue in the Magazine Archive Dauphin Island, Alabama. Photo © George Dodd|Dreamstime.com. White sand seashores…ocean breezes…quiet pine forests…With such peaceful beauty to call its...

Quacks and Splashes

Quacks and Splashes

Waterfowl migration on the Choptank River, Cambridge, Maryland. Photo © Cheryl Shank. Surf Scoters floated beneath us on the Choptank River, their dramatic head patterns standing out against the...

Chasing Short-eared Owls

Chasing Short-eared Owls

Short-eared Owl flying over a farm field. Photo © Adrian Shank. It was the evening of December 31, 2020. I was returning home from trying to find one more year bird, when my birding friend Tim Byler...

The Escapade

The Escapade

“Slow and steady wins the race,” I rehearsed to myself for the who-knows-how-many-eth time as I inched my way around the splendid oak. With my chin to the horizon I searched determinedly, hoping to...

Yellow-bellied Bully

Yellow-bellied Bully

I think some birders have feeding stations simply because they enjoy watching for unusual birds or unusual behavior.Recently we had a pair of Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers coming to our suet log—one...

I’m Hungry!!!!

I’m Hungry!!!!

Juvenile American Robin. Photo © Kristen Stombaugh. “CHIRP! . . . CHIRP!”What kind of bird sounds like that? I wondered.I was in waist-high grass a couple of yards from an electric fence when I...

Rock Wren Record

Rock Wren Record

Rock Wren. Photo © Zack Abbey / CC-BY-4.0. The parking lot was full. People milled around, all carrying binoculars, spotting scopes, or cameras. We found another parking area nearby, grabbed our...

To Hear a Kentucky

To Hear a Kentucky

By mid-June most of our warblers are feeding young, quietly flitting about gathering food. Except for early in the day, their songs are few and far between.The second week of June, a customer...

Spring Brings the Birds

Spring Brings the Birds

Ladder-backed Woodpecker. Photo © Josephine Dyck. Melodious notes herald the coming of spring at my home in western Texas. Doves, grackles, meadowlarks, Curve-billed Thrashers, mockingbirds, and...

Meeting Mrs. Nightjar

Meeting Mrs. Nightjar

Photos © Clement Martin. Africa’s sun poured all its fury on my head, bleaching my hair whiter still. My three Ugandan friends, my two younger brothers, and I were walking home from church on a...

Spring in the North

Spring in the North

Pileated Woodpecker. Photo © Lois Tschetter. Spring is returning to the North. We know because it’s April—late April, in fact. But the scene out the window doesn’t support the spring-is-coming...

The American Bittern

The American Bittern

American Bittern. Photo © Shalom Shirk. Climbing off some logs in our pond, I didn’t expect the pleasant surprise God had in store for me.Wait! What was that?! A female Mallard? The bird was sitting...