.Winter residents are continuing to arrive at the CyFair campus. A Brown Thrasher seems to have settled in on the Nature Trail, where I also saw an Eastern Phoebe and an American Robin on Friday. That's several weeks earlier than Robins have turned up in previous years. When I walked the trail yesterday, I also saw a Ruby-crowned Kinglet and a Yellow-rumped Warbler, as well as hearing Sedge and Winter Wrens.
One small patch of scrub behind some temporary buildings has been very busy with sparrows this fall. I usually see Lincoln's there but on Friday there were also White-crowned Sparrows and this first-of-season Swamp Sparrow.
Back at home I'm still waiting for winter residents to appear. The only one I've seen so far is a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. However, our yards are a little busier than they have been for a while. I haven't seen a White-winged Dove for weeks but one was grazing in our front yard yesterday. Given how quickly one W-w Dove can turn into 20 or 30, I'm not sure whether I'm glad to see one return. I have mixed feelings about another bird that has visited our front yard several times lately - a male House Sparrow. It's quite an attractive bird but I certainly don't want to see our yards overrun by this invasive species. I probably shouldn't worry, though, because our Northern Mockingbird is being very territorial at present and keeps chasing the Sparrow away.
As usual, our backyard feeders are attracting lots of House Finches all day every day. Now that it's colder in the mornings, they have their feathers puffed up so much that they all look grossly overweight. The same is true of the Carolina Wren that has recently taken to singing on our fence in the mornings and then visiting the feeders. Usually a very trim-looking bird, this one looks anything but trim at present.