2015 Ends On A Strange Note!!!

Birds around your backyard

2015 Ends On A Strange Note!!!

Postby tozjohn » Wed Dec 30, 2015 9:38 pm

2015 is coming to the end, twas a fairly good year for me and the missus. Many terrific memories of birding espeditions both here in Canada and in the U.S. More pictures than we really needed, enough to keep us out of trouble for a spell. However, the year to us is ending in a strange way. Here it is almost the end of December and we've only had one Pine Siskin and nil Redpolls. This is quite unusual for us up north. We knew according to the finch forcast that it wouldn't be great, but to be skunked so far is not what we were expecting. But in place of these usual migrants we have been blessed with a couple of our old friends sticking with us. While our feeders have been raided by our usual mass of Goldfinchs and Chickadees, and our suet balls attached by all 3 local woodpeckers and the Juncos are cleaning up the ground it is the other 3 characters that have made our day. When its this late in the season and you look out over the yard and see a Grackle, a Hermit Thrush and a Red-bellied woodpecker joining the crowd you begin to wonder exactly what the date really is. This is the latest I have ever had any of these birds still with us. Pleasant surprise, hopefully if they stay around that they will survive the up-coming bad (cold) weather. To be sure, if they stay near us they will be well fed. I've attached a photo of the 3 fluffed up wonders.

Linda and Ron Johnston
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada

PS - I should mention that it appears that the Grackle being with us appears not to be too unusual. On the CBC we held on Dec. 17th in the Soo we had a count of 5 grackles still here, along with 2 red-bellied woodpeckers!!!!

Common Grackle with suet - Fort Creek SSM ON, Dec 30, 2015.jpg
Common Grackle with suet - Fort Creek SSM ON, Dec 30, 2015.jpg (279.48 KiB) Viewed 1524 times

Red-bellied Woodpecker (female) - Fort Creek Drive SSM ON, Dec 30 2015.jpg
Red-bellied Woodpecker (female) - Fort Creek Drive SSM ON, Dec 30 2015.jpg (174.1 KiB) Viewed 1524 times

Hermit Thrush 3 - Fort Creek SSM ON, Dec 30, 2015.jpg
Hermit Thrush 3 - Fort Creek SSM ON, Dec 30, 2015.jpg (165.83 KiB) Viewed 1524 times
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Re: 2015 Ends On A Strange Note!!!

Postby Danaduck » Wed Dec 30, 2015 10:24 pm

The hermit thrush truly amazes me. What is this insect/worm eater doing in the snow?
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Re: 2015 Ends On A Strange Note!!!

Postby Cindee » Fri Jan 01, 2016 12:49 pm

We had a Hermit Thrush on a CBC a few years ago. Surprised the heck out of us then. Great bird. Grackle around this time of year is extremely unusual too. I have about 50 (or more) Pine Siskins here in Missaukee County. They are chowing down on my sunflower seeds. So far they haven't completely run off my Goldfinches but the flock keeps getting smaller. I had 1 Redpoll, one day about three weeks ago (before the Siskins arrived). I suspect he left with some of the goldfinches he was with.
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Re: 2015 Ends On A Strange Note!!!

Postby SandyLee » Mon Jan 04, 2016 1:56 pm

Pretty interesting "combo" there, Ron!
- Sandy
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