Posts Tagged ‘Black-headed Grosbeak’

Transfixed by Tanagers

May 18, 2010

Transfixed by the Western Tanagers and heading into serious sleep deprivation, we’ve been unable to accomplish anything for the last several days because we’re so busy feeding them. We’re up to twenty pounds of grape jelly served and still they come.

But we’re not so tired that science takes a backseat to our pure joy of having all these guests. No sir. We continue in the service of science, remembering Richard Feynman’s injunction, “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.”

Science can only advance if scientists maintain a healthy skepticism and always are open to new data. Sometimes, especially in the case of lesser scientists, the data disprove a treasured hypothesis.

But for great scientists, awaiting their Nobel Prize, data often confirm their hypotheses.

You’ll remember our scientific announcement from last week, made after discovering both Bullocks Orioles and Western Tanagers love grape jelly. We announced:

Orange birds love purple food.

Now, we have new data accompanied by more photographic evidence

That is a Black-headed Grosbeak – with its orange breast – eating grape jelly! Further proof of our discovery that orange birds love purple food.

Please don’t call. We don’t want the Nobel people to get a busy signal. If the tanagers don’t leave soon, we’ll need the prize money to buy grape jelly.


For more Western Tanager photos go to Photofeathers, a friend’s new and good photo blog about her birding adventures. We’ve added the blog to our link list on the right. When you visit scroll down to see many more photos and don’t miss Love Among the Quarai Ruins. (Adults Only.)

250 Posts

May 13, 2009
Male Black-headed Grosbeak

Male Black-headed Grosbeak

To celebrate this, the 250th post on this blog, we invited two Black-headed Grosbeaks and some House Finches to join us for dinner.  They seemed to have a pretty good time, although both the grosbeaks skipped the proffered martinis.  Said they were in the middle of migration and couldn’t fly drunk.


Even though he wasn’t drinking, the male grosbeak delivered the toast congratulating us.  He then asked of us the same question the late Earl Weaver, once the manager of baseball’s Baltimore Orioles, used to shout at umpires, “Are you going to get any better or is this it?”

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