Tiny winter visitor – the ruby-crowned kinglet.  While waiting for the bald eagles to decide if they were going to fish the Haw River this morning, I had the delight of watching one of the birds I call “itty-bitties”.  These are birds that are very small and tumble through the branches and bounce about their day looking for hibernating insects and the occasional left-over winter berries for their meals.  There are 2 species of kinglets that visit the Jordan Lake Neighborhood for the winter.  There is the ruby-crowned-kinglet – the red-patch on his head is there to signal when he is upset and the patch flairs.  Then there is the golden-crowned kinglet – I’ll have to see if I can get a photo and show you.  The hummingbird is the only bird smaller than the kinglets – so I am indeed talking “tiny itty-bitty bird”!

Petruchio returning to the First Nest after pushing an osprey back to the east side of the cove.

A beaver on an early morning swim back towards his dam.

This mallard drake was traveling so fast with his hen, that I missed getting her in the photo.

A ring-billed gull with a mouthful of fish fresh caught on the surface of the lake.

Wood duck drake starting to glow with his breeding colors.

In the winter you can find two varieties of kinglets at the lake.

This is a golden-crowned kinglet pouting at me.

Here is the other kinglet.  A ruby-crowned kinglet popping his ruby-crown at me when I startled him.

WALK6615 ruby-crown kinglet RUBY 2014

The “ruby” of the ruby-crowned kinglet was well displayed as this wee bird alerted to the approach of a human coming up the trail.