There are a number of reasons why I decided to take on this project. My first reason has to do with my interest in birds. This began shortly after moving to Victoria ten and a half years ago. With our house backing onto a wooded area, the chirping of birds is a familiar sound all year long. I often glance out the window to see birds of all forms in the yard throughout the day. Frequently I will pull out the Birds of Victoria or Birds of North America reference guides we have on hand. Unfortunately, the drawings in the first aren’t overly helpful for identification and the number of entries in the second is overwhelming. My second reason has to do with a photography course I took a number of years ago. Since that time I have been trying to think of a practical reason to buy a new camera. Taking pictures of birds requires a powerful zoom lens which my previous point-and-shoot camera could not accommodate. Perfect! My final reason was my desire to take on a new project to welcome in 2011. Hence, bird of the day was born.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

White-crowned Sparrow

Zonotrichia leucophrys
Striped crown:
 - Black and white (adult)
 - Chestnut and gray (immature)
Pale gray throat and breast 
Gray face and nape
Pink or yellow bill
Brown wings with white bars

Listen to its song.

Walking along Beach Drive the other day, I was lucky enough to see these birds prancing around on the roof of an old shed with a flock of other sparrows, many of which I have yet to identify. (It's proving to be quite difficult. I had no idea there were so many different types of sparrows). The birds were putting on an especially entertaining show. A number of them were in their first winter and were quite comical, both in their appearance (see photo to left) and their performances. Aren't baby animals cute?

Learn more about the White-crowned Sparrow.

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