[CT Birds] fruits and rarities

greg hanisek ctgregh at yahoo.com
Sat Dec 5 11:32:07 EST 2015

As I've noted previously, and I'm sure many have seen in the field, this has been an extraordinary season for wild fruits of various kinds. Birds were gorging on cherries in late summer (when I heard a couple Rose-breasted Grosbeak calls I'd never noted before). Now there are copious amounts of apples, pears, crabapples, winterberry etc. I was at Black Rock State Park in Watertown this morning, where a few planted trees in the swimming area parking lot where loaded with small copper-colored fruits (maybe some kind of flowering crab). The trees were loaded with robins, waxwings and starlings. At one point a Pileated Woodpecker flew and, balancing itself on rather small branches, gobbled these little fruits.
Needless to say, reports elsewhere of Townsend's Solitaires and Bohemian Waxwings make careful scrutiny of these place and bird aggregations highly worthwhile. If we get any Pine Grosbeaks later in the winter, these roadside apple trees will bear watching.
If you really like to be prepared for every eventuality, check out what a Fieldfare and a Eurasian Redwing look like.
Greg HanisekWaterbury

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