Posted by: atowhee | February 12, 2008

Not Sherwood Forest but definitely a Robin ‘Hood

You might have thought it was Monday, but here in this particular part of Ashland it was Robinsday.  They began descending from the trees around 830 AM.  For the first time this winter there were more than a couple in our yard, there were a couple dozen.  At one time nine stood around the edge of our round bird bath, each dipping down at random intervals to take a sip.  Filling the beak, then rocking back on avian haunches to let the water run down the thirsty throat.  They were not hurried nor pushy nor greedy.  They shared without rancor or acquisitive discontent.  As one or two finished and jumped down to the ground another would take a place around the pool.

Mid-morning I walked through LIthia Park axcross the street.  Hundreds of Robins were on the lawns and in the trees.  Their whinnies covered the rumble of Ashland Creek, swollen by melting snow.  Their activity and intensity seemed ot ignite the jays who were screaming and scolding from high in the evergreens.

Along with the hundreds of Robins on our street and in the park adjacent, there were the usual camp followers.  Dozens of Waxwings fluttered about, at times fly-catching in sun-warmed winter air.  A couple Varied Thrush called from deep within shaded hideaways.  Even a handful of Starlings had followed the Robin throng up from the valley floor.

At one time there were so many Robins in our small garden there was hardly room for the usual scattering of Juncos.  The squirrels were intimidated.  While they scold and refuse to retreat before deer, chase away Mourning Doves and lesser birds, the invasion of such a crowd of insistent Robins had our local squirrels back up in the trees, throwing tantrums but not sure they dared confront the mob on the lawn.

Jays clung possessively to the feeders which the Robins ignored anyway.  Their interest lay on the ground and in the bird baths.  Further up, berries were the name of the game.

Location:     243 Granite Street, Ashland
Observation date:     2/11/08
Notes:     Many of the Robins seemed to be more thirsty than hungry.  Some ate on the ground. None used the feeders.
Number of species:     15

Mourning Dove     20
Anna’s Hummingbird     2
Downy Woodpecker     1
Northern Flicker     1
Steller’s Jay     7
Western Scrub-Jay     2
Mountain Chickadee     2
Chestnut-backed Chickadee     6
Bushtit     20
Red-breasted Nuthatch     2
American Robin     250
European Starling     2
Cedar Waxwing     14
Spotted Towhee     1
Dark-eyed Junco     22

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2(

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