Spring Backyard Bird Photography

June 07, 2022

Birds in My Backyard

This spring is the first spring I spent in this new-to-me house and backyard. Backyard bird photography has been a lot of fun this spring to see what birds come in my backyard to feed or drink water. Of course, the usual backyard birds have been my visitors so far this spring. However, there has been a lot of activities with these birds. So, I thought I would share some of my images from the birds enjoying my backyard.

Northern Mockingbirds

Learning to Stand on Suet Feeders

Over the spring, it has been fun and hilarious at times to watch these mockingbirds try to feed on the two suet feeders that I have in my backyard. The mockingbirds had trouble with their feet and being able to stand on the suet cage and feed from that position. However, towards the end of May, they finally got the knack of how to stand on the suet cage and get some suet food.

The mockingbirds have easily been the most often seen birds and photographed birds in my backyard. This spring I have seen a cute little family of four, two adults and two fledglings. I am not sure where their nest was, which was not in my backyard, but the family has come into my backyard frequently. The adult mockingbirds have been using the suet food to feed their two fledglings.

Other Backyard Birds

Two species of backyard birds that I have seen and photographed frequently are a pair of downy woodpeckers and a group of American robins.

I believe the downy woodpeckers may have a nest in one of the trees that hang over into my yard. They are always zipping around my backyard and going up into those trees.

I hear them pecking on the trees often, especially earlier in the spring, and they have been enjoying feeding on my suet feeders.

Another very frequent bird visitor has been the robins. A group of robins find the worms plentiful in my backyard especially in the early mornings. A pair of robins did build a very nice nest on one of my utility boxes by the side of the house. However, after the one day of seeing them building it, I never saw the robins on or near that nest again. I believe they must have abandoned the nest due to it being in the side of the house where much bird action occurs between my backyard and my neighbors backyard. Robins do like to find flat surfaces to build their nest. That spot was a perfect flat surface but not ideal to being hidden from lots of other birds.

Robin’s nest (now abandoned) on a utility box next to my house in my backyard.
American robin (Turdus migratorius) walking in my yard searching for worms on a spring evening.

Other Backyard Birds

Some of the other backyard birds that I have photographed this spring include pair of northern cardinals, robins, a pair of black-capped chickadees, brown thrashers, and blue jays.

Black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) on one of my backyard bird feeders on a spring evening.
Blue jay (Cyanocitta cristata) taking a break from drinking water from my backyard bird bath on a spring evening.

Backyard Bird Photography Tips

I thought I would share a few quick tips for taking pictures of backyard birds. The most important tip is create a backyard habitat in which birds will want to come visit, feed and drink. Have several places for birds to perch in your backyard where they can have a view of a bird bath or bird feeders. Also, provide water and food sources for birds. If you regularly sit outside in your backyard, the birds will get use to your presence which makes it easier to photograph your backyard bird visitors.

Backyard Bird Photography Techniques

Here are a few quick tips on photography techniques to help you with your backyard bird photography. First, use a longer lens. I use a Tamron 150-600mm G2 with my Canon camera. The longer reach of this lens provides ample space for the birds and allows me to stay a good distance from my bird subjects.

Lighting is very important to regard when photographing. I usually go out late afternoon to evening time as that provides the best frontal lighting for my backyard bird habitat. In addition, paying attention to your background is very important. Having a non-cluttered background will allow the focus to be on backyard bird visitors. You can do this by blurring your background by using a small f-stop number (wide aperture) such as f/5/6 or f/6/3.

Hope you enjoyed reading my blog post on my spring backyard bird activity.

Click here to check out my previous blog post about my backyard butterfly garden being certified as a Monarch Waystation.

Female northern cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) on top of my butterfly house in backyard garden.

Male Northern cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) standing along the edge of my backyard garden on a spring evening waiting for his turn on the bird feeder.

Thank you for reading my Field Notes Blog, and I hope you will share this post with others.

Let’s protect our wildlife and nature!

All the very best,

Lori

Copyright © 2022 Lori A Cash

2 replies to “Spring Backyard Bird Photography

    1. loriacash – Lori A Cash is an award-winning wildlife and nature photographer who has over thirty years experience photographing wildlife and nature. She, as a photographer, has always had a love for the natural world and hoped that her images would inspire others to appreciate our natural world. This love for our natural world has brought Lori into the realm of conservation photography and visual storytelling. Lori resides in Norfolk, Virginia and loves to focus her conservation efforts around the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. Through her conservation writing and photography, Lori continues to want to continue to inspire and educate others about the beauty of the natural world and to advocate for the protection of wildlife with a special emphasis on waterbirds in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia.
      loriacash says:

      Thank you very much, Katy!

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