Thursday, January 18, 2007

Cedar Waxwing Visitors

I've posted about the winterberries beside my house before. We've seen countless birds feasting on the ruby-red berries that fill these bushes, but we've never seen the elusive cedar waxwing come to visit.

The cedar waxwing is somewhat famous for its unruly intoxicated behavior. In the late spring, when juniper berries are ripe and fermented in the warm sun, the birds will engorge themselves until they are stumbling around drunk, literally falling over each other. They can become quite a nuisance in this way.

However, the nice thing about the cedar waxwing visit is that it is always a lot of birds. The whole flock paid us a visit today and in one day, cleaned out 90% of the winterberries by my house. (Compare the picture above left with this picture, taken less than two weeks ago!) I don't mind the birds eating the berries. Quite the opposite. I am glad the berries are there for the birds. The bad thing was that I, personally, didn't get to see them. Becky did.

She took all of the photos here. She said that the birds were extremely skittish, and unlike all other birds, they seemed to see her on the other side of the window, and every time she approached, they would fly for the safety of a nearby tree (and out of photographic range). Luckily, she was able to capture a couple of good shots.

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