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Birds & Birding Regional Birder

This is regional birding information for:

Southeast
September 2014

The Southeast is dominate by two major forest types that dictate the kinds of wildlife, including birdlife, that live there: The southern Appalachian forest, represented brilliantly by the Great Smoky Mountains, and the widely spread southern mixed pine-oak forests. Where it is exceedingly wet, cypress swamps are typical, until the sea of grass, the everglades, takes over in the southern half of Florida.

Much of the Southeast is wet and generally warm, giving refuge to a great many species of birds during winter months. But even in summer, the Southeast is a mecca for birdlife because its lush habitats produce an abundance of food, particularly insects, that adult birds require to raise young.

Backyard Birds

The common birds of the backyard in the Southeast include the Carolina wren, Carolina chickadee, tufted titmouse, northern cardinal, painted bunting, northern mockingbird, red-bellied woodpecker, brown-headed nuthatch, eastern screech-owl, mourning, white-winged and collared doves.

Regional Birds

In the southern Appalachian forests, the red-bellied woodpecker, Carolina chickadee, wood thrush, brown thrasher, and summer tanager are common. The southern mixed pine-oak forests are home to the Carolina wren, brown-headed nuthatch, indigo bunting, yellow-throated and pine warblers, yellow-breasted chat and blue grosbeak. In the cypress swamp, look for the pileated woodpecker, prothonotary and northern parula warblers, red-shouldered hawk, barred owl, wood duck and limpkin. In the everglades, the snowy, great and cattle egrets, sandhill crane, white ibis, wood stork, northern harrier, snail kite, and purple gallinule are typical.

What's happening in your backyard this month
  • Confusing fall warblers and other neotropical migrants are passing through, some stopping to bathe and drink.
  • Many summer birds have gone south, leaving a few juveniles on their own to find their way.
  • Hummingbirds and orioles are still feeding on sugar water; many may be migrants.
  • Waterfowl, wading birds and raptors on the move; may drop into backyards for rest and food.
What to do in your backyard this month
  • Increase the numbers and kinds of bird feeders; offer greater variety of seeds, suet and fruits.
  • Maintain feeders with mealworms for bluebirds and robins; jelly and sugar water for hummingbirds and orioles.
  • Keep bird baths clean, filled and fresh; September can be hot and dry; migrants often need a wet pit stop.
  • Create brush piles with fall clippings for ground feeding birds; plant evergreens and other hardy cover plants.
 

 

 

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