Late Afternoon Calls of Scarlet and Summer Tanagers

Early this evening, the chick-brrr of a Scarlet Tanager and the pik-a-tuk calls of a Summer Tanager both laced through the trees around the edge of our back yard – very welcome sounds that brought a happy end to the day. So far this spring we’ve heard and seen both tanagers now and then, but not often and not regularly.

Tufted Titmice and Carolina Chickadees came to bathe in the shallow saucers on the deck rails, as they usually do at end of day, and a Brown-headed Nuthatch came to drink from the moat in the hummingbird feeder.

A male Ruby-throated Hummingbird made several trips to the feeder. Then a female arrived. She went first to the feeder and started to settle down for a sip – then suddenly zipped up and directly over toward me. I was sitting in a chair nearby and she came so fast and so close it startled me. She hovered in front of me for several seconds, checking me out, I guess, then flew away, wings humming in what sounded like an eloquent expression of annoyance.

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