Monday, October 29, 2012

Storm Birds

Hurricane Sandy did not drop any shearwaters in my back yard but it was remarkable how determined the local birds were to keep feeding even during the strengthening storm on Monday.  Sparrows mainly had their heads down (a few Juncos, one White-throated, one Chipping) but the Chickadees and Titmice were at the feeder all day, so much so that I switched to the larger one and zip-tied it to the feeder stand to stop it from swaying wildly when the winds started to gust >35 mph. By the time the eye passed to the south the wind had been gusting to 60mph but the feeder stayed intact.

I also finally had Pine Siskins, being apparently the last feeder in the whole of NJ to get them.  On Sunday I had a short visit from a flock of ~5 of them, aggressively defending perches on the seed and thistle feeder.  On Monday I had a single individual.

Now we'll see if the hurricane eye deposits anything unusual on the local water spots as it blasts through the area overnight.

Postscript: nothing new on the passerine front after the storm, save one Red-breasted Nuthatch on the Wednesday and a roving flock of Pine Siskins on Thursday - I'd been getting one Pine Siskin but this flock was 10+ birds.  The birds seem to have survived, at least based on feeder activity, although very enthusiastically using the seed feeder perhaps to make up for all that lost energy (or lost food sources?).

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