Photography Creative Ideas

Delightful and surprising: dawn to dusk beneath the bird feeder – in pictures

A former comedian and ventriloquist, Carla Rhodes’ life was transformed when she discovered a passion for wildlife conservation photography. Last winter, she placed a camera trap in her garden in the Catskill mountains in New York, with heartwarming results

Carla Rhodes

Main image: A tufted titmouse lands gracefully beneath the feeder. Photograph: Carla Rhodes

Sun 19 Dec 2021 13.38 GMT

  • Dark-eyed juncos are always the first birds to turn up at dawn.

    A dark-eyed junco looks at the camera
  • A dark-eyed junco spreads its wings.

    A dark-eyed junco spreads its wings
  • ‘Often overlooked and considered drab ground-feeding birds, dark-eyed juncos hold a special place in my heart due to their funny and curious behaviours,’ says Carla Rhodes.

    A dark-eyed junco
  • A dark-eyed junco frolics in the snow.

    A dark-eyed junco frolics in the snow
  • A tufted titmouse lands gracefully beneath the feeder.

    A tufted titmouse lands on the snow
  • Time to spread its wings.

    A tufted titmouse spreads its wing


  • A mourning dove turns its gaze to the camera.

    A mourning dove looks directly at the camera.
  • ‘Observing mourning doves was a daily pleasure, especially when they gathered to form a clean-up crew beneath the bird feeder,’ says Rhodes.

    Three mourning doves gather beneath the bird feeder
  • Northern cardinals are usually the last visitors of the day, arriving at dusk.

    A northern cardinal on snow covered ground
  • Their vibrant colours are dramatically set off by the snow.

    A red northern cardinal spreads its wings
  • A blue jay drops in for a visit.

    A blue jay drops in
  • A black-capped chickadee searches among the stones for fallen seeds.

    A black-capped chickadee searches among the stones for seeds from the bird feeder
  • Caught on camera: a grey squirrel on the move ...

    A grey squirrel on the move
  • ... searching for tasty morsels during a snowstorm.

    The grey squirrel searches for food in the snow
  • The northern short-tailed shrew, one of North America’s few venomous mammals, emerges from a stone wall near the bird feeder.

    The northern short-tailed shrew emerges from a stone wall near the bird feeder
  • An American red squirrel turns its back on the camera.

    An American red squirrel turns its back on the camera
  • A deer mouse tucks into a discarded seed from the feeder.

    A deer mouse tucks into a discarded seed from the feeder.
  • An American red squirrel pokes its head out from the stone wall.

    An American red squirrel pokes its head out from the stone wall.
  • Coming of age day is a Japanese holiday held every January to celebrate those who have reached 20, the official age of adulthood in Japan. Many ceremonies around the country have been scaled back as authorities continue to implement measures to tackle the ongoing coronavirus pandemic

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