For the Birds: Busy, busy feeders

Photo by Chris Bosak American Robin in Selleck's Woods in fall 2013.
Photo by Chris Bosak American Robin in Selleck’s Woods in fall 2013.

Activity at the birdfeeders has been nonstop. I have not seen any of the winter finches or really anything out of the ordinary, but the regulars are showing up in droves. I did see a palm warbler in the birdbath and a few yellow-rumped warblers in the trees.

I’m not alone in being invaded by feeder birds. Bill from Keene wrote recently and made an interesting analogy regarding the many birds at his feeders when he likened the action to an airport terminal. His visitors have included tons of juncos, jays, robins and many more. “Almost clouds, all flying madly, like insects,” Bill wrote. “Looks like an airline terminal.”

I really do like the airport analogy and thought of it the next time I watched my feeders. My frequent fliers are titmice, chickadees, white-breasted nuthatches and downy woodpeckers. They come and go like so many airplanes at LaGuardia or JFK, nonstop from dawn to dusk. Other regular visitors to Bosak International include Carolina wrens, blue jays, cardinals and red-bellied woodpeckers.

I have heard from others as well, and I appreciate the emails. This week, I even received comments from North Carolina (via my YouTube account) and “smokey California” (through my website). The North Carolina reader (or should I say viewer?) watched my goldfinch versus pine siskin video recently and mentioned that she has a lot of siskins at her yard now. The California reader posed a question about mockingbirds. Closer to home, Steve from Rochester had a couple of siskins, along with great numbers of house finches and robins. He also had two male purple finches and four red-breasted nuthatches.

John and Joanne from Dover had quite a morning recently when they looked out their window and saw 80 to 100 American goldfinches covering their black-eyed Susans. “They stayed about half an hour and then took off,” they wrote. “This is the first time we’ve seen this.”

Connie from Keene loves watching her downy, hairy and red-bellied woodpeckers but was also thrilled to see a northern flicker on the ground in her yard. Flickers love ants and are the only woodpeckers in New England commonly seen on the ground.

Karen from the Monadnock Region wrote to say she had about 20 robins in her yard recently. “They love to use our birdbath and must be eating worms or insects on our lawns and in the gardens,” she wrote. “Some of them are young. Also, they leave a lot of blue droppings. Must be eating blackberries or blueberries.”

Karen also wondered if robins flew south for the winter. Yes and no. Some robins fly south for the winter months, and many robins remain in New England throughout the winter. Many of the robins we see in the winter are likely migrants that have flown down from up north.

What are you seeing out there? Drop me a line and let me know.

2 thoughts on “For the Birds: Busy, busy feeders

  1. Am I crazy but I have have never had
    Pine Siskins at my feeder and wasn’t even sure what they were! However, they cannot be anything else because I also have purple, gold and house finches and they are considerably smaller and far more striated in chest and
    Wings!! I live in Stow Ma !!??

    Liked by 1 person

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