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National Bird Day (2 days late)



I found out late on Friday that January 5th is National Bird Day. Being a novice bird watcher I was excited to have another reason to celebrate these incredible beings and also a bit disappointed I didn't know sooner so I could have written this blog for then. Anyway, I doubt the birds mind too much.


I've long had a love for birds, exclaiming how cute their little bellies are and enjoying their songs but I had never considered myself a birder. A few years ago, my brother Craig started really getting into birds and since I already loved them I saw it as a way to give us another thing to talk about so I started paying attention.


Every bird watcher/birder has what they call their "spark" bird, the one that made them go "hey, I'm into this and need to learn about all of the birds" In a way, Craig served as a bit of a spark to get me paying attention but the bird that finally made me go all in is the Tufted Titmouse. Now yes, they are seriously some of the cutest birds in existence but when they became my spark bird, I didn't know what bird I was searching for or what they looked like. What I started with, was their song. I kept hearing a bird from the window "tweedle, tweedle" or "peter, peter" and I needed to know who I was listening to. So, I started googling.


Some of my entries:

  • what bird in NJ sounds like they're saying "tweedle, tweedle"

  • common birds in northwest NJ and their calls

  • birds that say "peter, peter"


Not exactly scholarly research, but, it got me there. I found tons of bird call recordings through Cornell Lab of Ornithology. As I dug around I finally found it, the recording I was searching for, the Tufted Titmouse. I nearly fell out of my chair when I saw photos of their expressive little faces.




Seriously, can you even? 🥰🥰🥰


I chose the raven as the cover photo as I have always felt a connection to crows and the raven was the only photo close enough that Wix had to offer (hmm, seems like Wix needs to step it up with the stock photo options!). Ravens and crows are not the same, but they are both Corvids. They are super smart and even use tools. I've read stories of people leaving gifts out for local crows and the crows bringing back gifts in response. I'm not sure what crow appropriate gifts are and I'm happy to simply enjoy them as they are.


A great (*and free) app that I use pretty much every time I walk out of the house is the Merlin Bird ID app which is hosted by the Cornell Lab I mentioned above. I use the sound ID option constantly, it listens for and records bird calls wherever you are and pops up with the name and some details on the bird(s) you're hearing. Knowing which birds to look for makes them a lot easier to spot. It's a really fun way to learn about your local bird population. It's very exciting to catch the call of a new bird. Especially during migration season, you never know who you'll catch as they make their way through your area.


Are you a birder? Who is your spark bird? Will you check out the app and see who lives in your neighborhood? Tell me all of the details in the comments below!








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