The theme this month is about “returning home”. On our cover is a male Indigo Bunting; this little bird, nicknamed the ‘Blue Canary” sings with cheerful gusto through late spring and early summer throughout North America. It often migrates by night, using the stars to navigate. Its habitat is farmland, brush areas, and open woodland. Like all other blue birds, Indigo Buntings lack blue pigment. Their jewel-like color comes instead from microscopic structures in the feathers that refract and reflect blue light, much like the airborne particles that cause the sky to look blue.
Another favorite in our area is the Hummingbird; Ruby-throated Hummingbirds arrived along the gulf coast at the end of February. Our hummingbirds will return in early May, but you can put out a feeder in late April that might help early returnees or those birds migrating further north. If you do, you still have to change the nectar regularly (every 4-6 days) even if no hummingbird visits it. You can find all your birding needs at Country Acres on Rt 50.
The largest migratory bird in upstate New York is known as The Snowbird. This clever bird travels in a number of ways. They can be spotted regularly in large RV’s along the I-95 corridor or in beautiful boats slowly traveling up through the inter-coastal waterways from Florida to our region and beyond. Many of them expect to be fed and watered upon arrival so be sure your refrigerator is stocked with New York delicacies such as grain fed beef and beer. During their stay in Florida they have been deprived of real pizza, maple syrup and Greek Diners. Be prepared to indulge your snowbird visitor with some outings to our locally owned eateries. Be warned, they have been known to seek shelter in their friends and relatives homes so be sure you have a fresh set of sheets in the guest room!