[CT Birds] survey in NW CT on the state of the bird food crop for this winter.

Carrier Graphics carriergraphics at sbcglobal.net
Sun Nov 11 17:24:51 EST 2012

To ad to Patrick Cs fine article on winter finches, It so happened my brother 

and I just did a survey here in NW CT on the state of the bird food crop for 
this winter.

As Patrick mentions, if the crop is not good, the winter bird species just may 
not stay
here in CT and just past through, looking for better areas of food to survive 

>From our 5 Hr survey driving about the towns of W Hartland, Colebrook and parts 
of Norfolk,
we feel this winter might not have the food supply needed to sustain winter 
birds through the long winter.
Of note: Last year from my observations, was the best for food crop I had seen 
in many years.
Ash tree seeds were in abundance up here, and was one of the best years for them 
i ever saw. 

So to for most of the other tree and bush seeds as well. This Year however does 
not look
so good, especially for here in NW CT. Our results are listed below:

Hemlock cones:    Poor to average. Some areas had fair cones, others completely 

White Pine cones:    Poor. Seems the cones that were there, all blew off from 
our two storms.

Native Spruces:    Poor at best (Black & White Spruce)

Birches:            Poor at best. The Black, Yellow and Gray Birches have few if 
any cones.

Alder:    In some areas their were cones with seed, but in general not a good 
crop this year.

Larch:    Fair at best. Most groves were lacking cones, while with single trees 
some were better.

Beechnut:    Poor, and past. We saw no evidence of any nuts. What was there 
seems to have
                     been utilized already by native species.

Oaks:    Same as above, but we seem to have had a poor summer for acorn 

Bush fruits:     Seems the Sumac crop is spotty, Winterberry crop has been eaten 
already, and
                Poison Ivy berries we did not see on any plants we spotted.

So Our summation is: Any winter finches that will be visiting our State - at 
least here in NW CT,
      will not find adequate food sources to hold them here for this winters 

However: The GOOD NEWS might be - with little to no wild food sources available, 
they just might
 show up more readily at our bird feeders!

Good luck out there finch visitors, and if you happen to get any at your 
feeders, please post them
 so we can all know whats being seen this winter!

Paul & Douglas Carrier  

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