The Yardbirds was a 1960s rock group; the word “yardbird” began as a slang term for an inept soldier who was restricted to a small area, from there the term became slang for someone confined as a prisoner.
But those aren’t the kinds of yard birds that we see here. Our yard birds are the winged kind that, in winter, repeatedly visit our feeders, in spring and summer nest here, and often spend the night in the trees and shrubs around the house or in tree cavities or nest boxes.
This past winter was an odd one, cold at times, although with a low temperature that never reached 0°F it wasn’t as cold as it was almost every winter several decades ago. This winter's lows alternated with record-setting warmth in excess of 50°. Days of high wind and days of dead calm; days of snow, days of rain, sometimes freezing rain, and days with a crystal clear blue sky.
Along with the weird weather we had a distinct dearth of birds in the yard. There wasn't much wild food in forest and field last winter so it would be logical to assume that birds would have been flocking to the feeders. But that wasn't the case, there weren't even as many of the ordinary species.
In any case, here they are – some at the feeders some not, but all interesting and beautiful –
Spring is here now and with it more species of birds, some just passing through, others to stay and nest.