Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Fox & White-crowned Sparrows

The Christmas Count Fox Sparrow and White-crowned Sparrow continue to be daily visitors at our feeders.
Fox Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Fox Sparrow & CBC Documentation

The Brattleboro Area CBC "count week" ended on Tuesday, 12/24. At 4:00pm on Tuesday, a Fox Sparrow was scratching beneath one of our feeders, just making it into the "cw" list.

This crummy photo is for documentation purposes ...

Fox Sparrow - 12/24, 4:10pm
 The Fox Sparrow was present off and on throughout Christmas Day ...

Fox Sparrow, 12/25, South Newfane
Also for documentation purposes is this equally crummy photo of the White-crowned Sparrow on 12/22, the day after the Brattleboro CBC. The bird has been present since early December. It was missed on count day, probably because we were both in the field all day counting bird ...

White-crowned Sparrow, South Newfane, VT 12/22
During the summer, 5 pair of Evening Grosbeaks consumed copious quantities of black oil seed raising their young. When the job was complete, they left, and my bird-seed cost plummeted. A small flock made a brief stop yesterday ...

Evening Grosbeak
I took few photos during the CBC last Saturday, except for a flock of Cedar Waxwings. This youngster was "knee deep" in snow ...

Cedar Waxwing
I hope 2013 has been a good birding year for you!!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Still Here! Brattleboro CBC

I'm still here, although for various reasons I have not posted for several weeks.

Yesterday we did the Brattleboro Area Christmas Bird Count in southeastern Vermont. Rain held off and we had a good count, with 56 species recorded.

Highlights included
 -- Barrow's Goldeneye among several hundred waterfowl coming in to roost above the Vernon Dam in the late afternoon (previous cw in '04 & '10)
-- Rough-legged Hawk seen near the fish hatchery along Connecticut River (last record '04)
-- count week Common Grackle  (last record cw '06)
-- count week White-crowned Sparrow (last records '90, '92)

The White-crowned Sparrow was at my feeders. I photographed it on December 14. It was seen everyday through December 20.

White-crowned Sparrow - South Newfane
Northern Cardinals have been common at my feeders this month. A resident pair plus a "flock" of 5 males and 4 females; I suspect these are yearling birds yet to pair and establish territory. Cardinals in Vermont are colonizers from the south. Old-time Vermonters often look askance at "flatlanders," but cardinals seem to be the exception ... and for good reason ...

The backyard feeders also host the "snowbirds" who come south to enjoy to temperate winters of Vermont (temperate? really) and the several residents like the chickadees ...

American Tree Sparrow
Black-capped Chickadee
Good birding!


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