Birds to brighten your day: April 29

Photo by Chris Bosak A male northern cardinal feeds its mate in a backyard in New England, April 2020. Merganser Lake.

A Day on Merganser Lake XX

I like this shot because it reminds me of shy teenagers kissing behind the bushes. I remember those days, even though they were many moons ago. Last week, you may recall, I posted a photo of bluebirds feeding each other. Now, it’s the cardinals’ turn. My latest For the Birds column looks at this behavior. I’ll post the column on this site on Sunday, as usual.

(Repeat text for context:  I’m running out of COVID-19 lockdown themes so from now until things get back to some semblance of normalcy, I will simply post my best photo from the previous day. You could say it fits because of its uncertainty and challenge. I’ll call the series “A Day on Merganser Lake,” even though that’s not the real name of the lake I live near in southwestern Connecticut, it’s just a nod to my favorite duck family.)

Just a cool photo of blue jay catching a peanut

Photo by Chris Bosak A blue jay adjusts a peanut at a feeding station in Danbury, CT, March 2019.

Well, it’s actually adjusting the peanut, but it is snagging the food out of midair, so “catching” is technically correct. The blue jay originally grabbed the peanut horizontally in its bill. Jays prefer to carry peanuts lengthwise, so this jay tossed the nut into the air and caught it in the desired position.

The reasons may differ, but it is similar to how osprey carry their prey. Ospreys typically emerge from a successful dive with a fish horizontally in its talons. While flying away, the “fish hawk” will adjust the fish to a more aerodynamic lengthwise position.