Nothing thrills me more than hearing a cardinal out my window. Its cheerful singing draws me to the window to look around and spot the red bird in a tree. Think bird watching is boring? Think again! And finding birds beyond a pigeon and a common sparrow just takes looking out your window or a walk around the block.
Enjoy our beginner’s bird watching guide:
Northern Cardinal (above)
Cardinals are year-round residents in Boston and in the spring you can hear their cheerful tweeting often. The male cardinals are bright red with a black mask. The female is a light brown with a tuft of red on top, wing, and tail. They usually travel as a couple.
Blue Jays are the jerks of the bird community. They are bright blue with a distinctive pointy head. They are a member of the crow family and have a loud, strident “Jay! Jay!” call. They are aggressive and always looking for a fight.
Both male and female are grayish brown with a bright orangey red breast.
Black Capped Chickadee
Black-capped chickadees are small and round. They have black caps and throats with white cheeks.
These birds usually travel in packs and have shiny black feathers with patches of green and purple gloss. They are very loud and highly vocal birds.
Named for the mournful sound of their cooing, mourning doves are brownish birds with small heads and long tails. They are a fancier, more dressed up pigeon.
Males have black heads, backs, and wings with bright orange below and on their tails. Females are much lighter with a pale orange, yellow, or tan color underneath. They love fruit, and if you leave some in your backyard in the spring, you may find one feeding on it!
Downy woodpeckers are medium-sized birds with a broad white stripe down the center of its back. Their black wings are marked with white horizontal bars, and their faces are also striped black and white. Males have a bright red dot at the backs of their heads.
Dorchester is no stranger to wild turkeys. If it’s mating season for turkeys (spring) watch out for the males. They can get aggressive.
These are just some of the birds you may find in your neighborhood in the spring! Let us know if you’ve seen any! Here’s more information about birds and bird watching!
Also spotted in Dorchester – snowy owls and bald eagles!
Maureen Dahill is the editor of Caught in Southie and a lifelong resident of South Boston sometimes mistaken for a yuppie. Co-host of Caught Up, storyteller, lover of red wine and binge watching TV series. Mrs. Peter G. Follow her @MaureenCaught.
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