Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Invading Red-breasted Nuthatches, and More Birds Passing Through

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Connecticut (and the rest of the United States, actually) is current experiencing an irruption of Red-breasted Nuthatches. This means there are now way more of these little birds scampering around than usual, and so I've been thinking that it should be only a matter of time before a Red-breasted Nuthatch shows up in our yard. I was quite happy this morning, then, when the Red Cedar outside our apartment's windows played host to one of these unusual visitors!

You are so cute, little bird, and so good at being upside-down. I love those fluffy, rusty feathers under your belly!

I was struck, actually, by how similar this bird's costume looked to those of the Black-capped Chickadees who were also flitting through the trees. Shift around the black and white on your face, little nuthatch, stop climbing along the undersides of branches, and you're practically a chickadee. (Well, almost.) The chickadees were making the comparison even easier this morning by carrying around big black sunflower seeds, so their beaks looked almost nuthatch-length (although way too bulky):

Chickadee... Red-breasted Nuthatch... It's like they were shopping in the same clothing store:

OK, one last chickadee picture, because these guys were being especially photogenic this morning, and I couldn't help myself:

So the Red-breasted Nuthatch was exciting. Around the same time, a tiny Ruby-crowned Kinglet passed through these trees as well -- this is another very cool bird who only rarely stops by, and usually only in the spring and fall:

As you may have noticed in some of these pictures, the Red Cedar's fleshy cones -- which are like dark blue berries -- are now ripe and ready for birds to scarf them down. Over the past couple of days, a small flock of Cedar Waxwings has been visiting our tree, but so far these birds have been plucking berries from the far side of its branches, and (mostly) hiding from my camera:

Hey birds, there are tons of good berries on this side of the tree, too! The buffet's open, so come on over!


  1. Great birds, I love your cute RB Nuthatch and the Chickadee. The waxwings are cool too. Great shots.