bird photo-stalking

A few weeks ago, Remy wanted some birdseed for a valentine's day project he'd read about in his February Highlights Magazine. (Make a birdseed valentine.) After we were done making the project, we had a huge bag of birdseed leftover. There are tons of birds in our yard, so we might as well feed them, right?

(I also like squirrels, so I didn't bother buying a squirrel proof birdfeeder. But so far the squirrels haven't noticed the bowl of seeds.)

I duct taped a plastic Tupperware container of birdseed outside my office window and hoped some of the birds that congregate in the bushes outside my window would come partake and I might get some closeup bird photos out of the deal. And they have come to eat! But they are skittish. Oh so very skittish.

So, I've been photo-stalking a pair of cardinals for the last three days. I have been totally frustrated in my attempts to get the photo I want, but I continue to persevere.

This is the female cardinal. She's slightly less freaked out by me than the male. But it has still been amazingly difficult to get photos of these two. 

While I type this, they're flirting with landing on the window sill and then flying away when I turn my head slightly or move my hand towards the camera that is sitting right beside me. I've lowered the blinds so they maybe won't be as startled. I'm also trying to get better at using my peripheral vision and moving slowly enough to not startle them.

Yet another lesson in patience for impatient me.

This is the male cardinal. I got some not-great-at-all great shots of him the first day because I'd accidentally left my camera in manual mode and I didn't have time to change settings and also the window was really atrociously dirty. Since I cleaned the window off, he's been even more skittish. Sigh.

But goodness, they are gorgeous little birds!

There's also a flock of brown birds that perches in the bushes next to the house, but I don't think they've been near the seeds. Maybe the cardinals are keeping them away? Or perhaps they are even more skittish. I'm not sure.

Did I mention I'm completely having fun with this project? Oh yes. Yes indeed.

And I will get some decent photos out of it... eventually. I may need to rearrange and keep experimenting to figure how to freak the birds out less, but eventually, we'll get to a comfortable place together.