Monday, January 9, 2012

Hoary Redpoll

We have about 100 Common Redpoll coming to the feeders this year. Yesterday while looking through the bunch I spotted this little guy, if you are lucky if you have a bunch of Common Redpoll there will be at least one of these, they look the same almost but a really a separate species with no interbreeding. Once you see him it is easy to pick him out, much whiter overall with a white rump and very little streaking on the breast, and a light wash of pink.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Year of the Hawk Owl

This seems to be a big year for Northern Hawk Owls. I have seen 5 in the last couple of weeks. This one has been hanging around our house and today we got to watch it catch a Vole by diving into the snow and grabbing it. 2 weeks ago I had it and a Short-eared Owl close together, with the SEOW hunting over the field and the NOHO sitting in a tree watching.
One of my first birds of the new year was a Coopers Hawk, that took and plucked Hairy woodpecker at Rays feeder as we were sitting drinking our morning coffee. It spent quite some time on the ground plucking the woodpecker, before flying off to some secluded spot to feed in peace.
Our New Years day big day turned up 17 species on a cold windy and snowy day. We started at Rays feeder with 8 species, with the Coopers being the bird of the day. A trip to the dump got us Bald Eagle, Starling, and while walking out I spotted the only Pine Grosbeak we got for the day. Lou Parents fields were a bust as it was snowing and blowing so hard we could hardly see the road. The last birds of the day were 2 Eurasian Collared Doves at Kim Trombley's feeders. We called it a day at about 15:00 due to the fact we could not see or hear much in the wind and snow.