Posted by: atowhee | October 9, 2019

WINTER’S BIRDS ARRIVING

The constellation of wintering birds that we expect every winter is forming; Golden-crowned Sparrows and juncos have been here already this month.  Today I saw our first Song Sparrow of the season.  Present occasionally are the very red-breasted robins who breed much further north. Not much sound except the honking of the nuthatches and the scolding of the jays.

I actually saw my first Fox Sparrow of the season as well.  But dead.  It was lying along a ball field at Wennerberg Park.  It didn’t seem emaciated, nor had it been mauled by a predator.  Disease?  Fatigue?  Migration-caused heart attack?  Flew into a foul-ball screen?

TIME TO RETIRE?

Shoot first, ask questions later.  I despise that policy for cops and soldiers, but with a small camera and small birds and non-violent observation it can be heavenly.  I have now–immodestly–taken a superb picture of a young Cedar Waxwing.  I have hundreds of images of these birds and thousands more have been discarded (the glut brought to us by digital photography).  But I have never come closer to showing the vitality, beauty, joy and animal hunger that is the essence of being a waxwing.
This happened as the dog and I walked near home.  After a heavy late afternoon rain the sun shown low in the western heaven.  Evening light brighten every color, every view.  A cold night was coming, our first frost.  The birds were having dinner and a neighbor’s hawthorn was berry-rich and full of waxwings and robins:ww at dusk (2)ww haw1ww haw2I do not know if this young waxwing went whole haw.

Here’s an Anna’s male in our garden:

Anhu grdn (2)

Here’a a lone Turkey Vulture I saw at Joe Dancer Park earlier this week, perhaps my last one in the county this year.  It was cold and early morning so he was hoping for some sun, warmth and updrafts:tv-jdp (2)

820 NW 19th Street, McMinnville, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Oct 9, 2019
14 species

Eurasian Collared-Dove  7
Downy Woodpecker  1
California Scrub-Jay  1
Black-capped Chickadee  1
Chestnut-backed Chickadee  4
Bushtit  X
Red-breasted Nuthatch  2
American Robin  1
House Sparrow  X
House Finch  1
American Goldfinch  8
Dark-eyed Junco  4
Golden-crowned Sparrow  1
Song Sparrow  1     first of the season at this location where they do not breed

820 NW 19th Street, McMinnville, Yamhill, Oregon, US
Oct 8, 2019
15 species

Eurasian Collared-Dove  8
Anna’s Hummingbird  1
Downy Woodpecker  1
California Scrub-Jay  X
Black-capped Chickadee  1
Chestnut-backed Chickadee  4
Bushtit  X
Red-breasted Nuthatch  2
American Robin  1
House Sparrow  X
House Finch  1
American Goldfinch  8
Dark-eyed Junco  4
Golden-crowned Sparrow  1


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: