[CT Birds] Pine Grosbeaks, Pileated Woodpecker, BOWA?

Mntncougar at aol.com Mntncougar at aol.com
Fri Dec 28 21:15:03 EST 2007

This morning I stopped at Hitchcock Chair in Riverton around  9:30 looking 
for the reported Bohemian Waxwings.  Unfortunately I saw no  Waxwings of any 
kind, but as I was searching the area I first heard and then saw  a Pileated 
Woodpecker on a tree along the bank of the river, about 200 feet past  the back 
end of the factory.  I had a rather brief but very good look at  it.  Then it 
flew to the far side of the river, and a while  later I did hear it again, but 
could not locate it.   If it is  resident in that area, its a good spot to get 
a look at it.  
At Shepard Road in Norfolk the Pine Grosbeak flock seems to  have grown 
considerably.  On Monday the most we saw there was about 15 at 1  time.   Today on 
a couple of occasions there was a flock of more than  40,  though most  times 
the number of birds seen was probably in the  15 to 20 range.  Also, on Monday 
the greatest number or adult males at  1 time seemed to be 3, but today there 
were more than that, and when the large  flock was together it appeared that 
almost half the flock was adult males.   Perhaps more than 1 flock is working 
the area and on occasion they all get  together at once.   There were people 
there today from Long Island and  New Jersey photographing the birds.  Getting 
within 15 feet of them is no  problem at all.
Someone observed that the birds did not really seem to be  eating the flesh 
of the apples, and in fact the snow under the trees is orange  from the dropped 
or discarded apple parts.  You can watch the birds chew  the small apples in 
their beaks and then seem to flick off large parts of the  pulp.   Perhaps 
they only want the seeds in the apple  core?
I checked Under Mountain Road and Housatonic River Road in  Canaan but found 
nothing of interest, and drove back to Norfolk via Canaan  Mountain Road and 
saw nothing period.  The Pileated was a lifer for me (as  were the Grosbeaks on 
Monday), so it was still a good day.  
Don Morgan

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