Saturday, January 24, 2009

Invasion of the Crossbills

White-winged Crossbills. This species has made a dramatic appearance this winter in southern Ontario, especially over the last month. Photo by Marianne Balkwill.

I got a tip from Russ Jones that White-winged Crossbills were very reliable in a coniferous woodlot across from the entrance to Holiday Beach, so yesterday I decided to take a drive and see if I can relocate, and maybe get a photo of these special visitors. I was not dissappointed. As soon as I pulled over on the side of the road and got out of the car I could here the crossbills chitter chattering away to each other. There were 12 birds in total in the area, and I did manage to get a few photos....though they are not that great.

Also in the area were a few Red-breasted Nuthatches, Juncos, White-throated Sparrows, Mourning Doves, and a large flock of about 25 American Robins flew over as well.
Also got a new book this week. Shorebirds of the Pacific Northwest. So far, it looks like the best book on shorebirds I have ever seen, but I haven't really got the chance to dive into it yet.


  1. The shorebird book is excellent! I refer to it quite often.
    I had more crossbills in the yard yesterday!

  2. EEEEEK!!! TAKE THAT ORB SPIDER OFF LOL I freaked when I scrolled down that far!

  3. hey Marianne! thanks for your comment on my leucistic kestrel. i enjoyed checking out your blog and if you end up doing your SE Arizona trip, let me know if you want a birding friend or any help. i'm living in phoenix now and have been getting out a lot around here and the SE corner and would love to join ya!