Bird Watch: Keep an eye out for these summer birds.
May 13, 2015
Trees and local wildlife go hand-in-hand. By caring for and preserving your trees, you’re also helping to preserve healthy habitat for local birds and other wildlife. Here in North Texas, spring and summer are busy birding seasons! Many species of birds are busy building nests in your trees now for offspring that will emerge during summer. We’re always keen to keep an eye on which birds are frequenting the area each season.
Which birds can you expect to see the Dallas-Fort Worth area? Here are a few of the highlights to look for migrating through our area this spring and summer:
Indigo Bunting is a stocky, sparrow-sized bird whose males are known for having bright blue feathers. They have a loud, bouncy, high pitched whistle that is easily identified. The females are generally brown with pale streaks on the breast. Sometimes the female’s wings might be tipped with blue. Indigo Bunting birds love to forage for seeds and berries in overgrown patches of brush and sing from very high tree tops.
Western Kingbird: You’ll know this beauty immediately from his yellow belly, black wing feathers with white edges and soft gray head feathers. When acting territorial, the male will flash red feathers from underneath his gray crown. The western Kingbird is among the most widespread of the North American Kingbirds. Their call is a series of bubbles, chirps and squeaks.
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher is found through much of Texas. Both the males and females sport long, graceful tail feathers. They have soft gray heads and bellies, with dark gray wings and a tinge of orange underneath. You’ll find them in isolated trees (often mesquite trees) waiting for grasshoppers and other insects to jump so they can swoop down and catch them mid-air. Their chirp is a series of sharp chirps that rise in pitch as the call goes on.
The Dickcissel songbird is a lovely, small, sparrow-like bird. The male has yellow chest feathers and thin black stripes on the sides of his throat. The female has pale yellow feathers on her chest and a duller head pattern. They make the prettiest chirp that sounds like dick, dick, ciss, ciss, ciss. They are ground foragers so look for them in grassy areas.
Want to attract more beautiful birds to your landscape? Be sure to plant a variety of trees as shelter and berried trees and shrubs for food. Nandina, Yaupon Holly and other berried plants are both beautiful and great for the local wildlife. Fill a birdbath with water and place near a window or sitting area so you can enjoy the show!
Want to see more local birds? Be sure to visit the Trinity River Audubon Center this spring … and plant more trees!