For weeks now I’ve been posting about Christmas greens and trees and plants. I thought I’d take a little break from that–at least for a few days–so that those of you that don’t celebrate can have a bit of a breather.
For those of us up here in the colder parts of the country (which lately seems like most of the United States most of the time!) Christmas is a lovely way to forget the fact that you can barely walk out the door without encountering some kind of nastiness. I know in my particular part of the country last week, we had a Nor’easter that brought first an ice storm, then buckets of rain, and then that was followed by a full day of snow. Interestingly enough, the snow didn’t stick–thankfully. But for those of us that celebrate, why wouldn’t we want to think about something other than weather like that?!
But winter isn’t always that way, of course. And there are lots of great things to see in the winter that are obscured on sunny summer days.
For one thing, so long as you are properly dressed, winter is a great time to watch birds (and really, if the cold bothers you, you can always do this from indoors through a window with a cup of something warm to drink!)
This is why the birding organizations run their counts in winter. Audubon has their famous Christmas Bird Count over a period of a few weeks this time of year.
And the Cornell Lab begins asking folks to observe birds in their yards–or at their feeders if they have them–in early November right through the beginning of April. They call this Project FeederWatch. You can learn more about that here.
I’ve always believed that most gardeners were secretly birders at heart. How can you not be? We’re out there everyday while we’re gardening and birds are all around us.
Perhaps this is the time to learn a little more about birds. You have all winter to do it!