A Pine Siskin from week 23.

Just another Pine Siskin (Spinus pinus) you may think but this one is a bit special, at least to me.

Pine Siskins are an irruptive species meaning numbers vary from winter to winter as the birds follow food sources. Some winters we may only see one or two, last winter we had a flock of over 40 birds at times. They must have found enough food because some of them stayed around in the spring and at least one pair must have bred as this is a youngster.

When we first spotted them some of the young were seen begging a male Purple Finch and a female American Goldfinch to be fed.

Juvenile Pine Siskin.

Colpoy’s Bay at sunrise, week 23.

Saturday morning of week 23 saw me down at Colpoy’s Bay for the sunrise. One nice thing about this time of year, with the sun rising so early in the morning I can visit any of my shoreline spots and have it to myself.

A still morning with some nice reflections on the water.

A sunrise over Colpoy's Bay.

Orange on yellow.

A pair of Common Red Soldier Beetles mating on Ragwort flowers. Despite the common English name I’d describe them as orange rather than red.

The Soldier part of the common English name comes from the colour pattern supposedly reminiscent of the red uniforms of early British soldiers.

A film shot from my archives. Taken in Cheshire, England in the mid 1980s.

Soldier Beetles mating on Ragwort flowers.

Say What You See.

This week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge is Say What You See.

This made me think of some of my Instagram posts where I compared a species common English name to a photo of the species and give it a checkmark when they match.

Rose-breasted ✔ Grosbeak ✔ (Pheucticus ludovicianus)

Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

Week 23. An old barn at sunrise.

Week 23 saw me on a local side road for the sunrise. At this time of year the sun rises far enough in the North East to illuminate the side of the barn nicely.

Because of the big difference in brightness between the sky and the foreground I spent some time trying different combinations of graduated neutral density filters trying to find a balance between the two.

Old barn in the spring.