Friday, 22 March 2013

Waxwing lyrical part 20 - it's snow joke this weather

The blizzards arrived overnight as forecast and have yet to stop. Last night I thought I was mad when I lost the feeling in my fingers putting out apples in sub zero temperatures made worse by a significant windchill. Tonight I confirmed that the Waxwing madness had really taken hold when I was up the ladder putting out apples in horizontal snow. There was no messing around though and 40 apples were put out in record time. At least I am off work tomorrow so I can top them up during the day if necessary.

Only 37 arrived first thing this morning but they were very flighty with all the branches whipping about in the very strong wind. Only 12 stayed to feed before I went to work but more came back later and at least 25 were present for most of the afternoon. I delayed going into work because of the snow and this allowed me to get a few photographs.

This is the Estonian ringed bird caught on 27th Feb but was seen a few
days before so has been around for about a month now.

On my way to work I noticed a group of about 20 Waxwings near a tree cotoneaster I had been keeping an eye on. I had been eyeing up these berries for some guerrilla pruning but the cotoneaster is not very big and is in the middle of a pub car park by a busy main road; a bit too public even for me. On my way home tonight it appeared to have been completely stripped of berries although it was a check at more than 30 mph in a blizzard.

Bird feeding hasn't been confined to the Waxwings. I have also topped up the feeders at one of my baited sites today and it was seriously cold in the wind. I don't know when the weather will calm down to allow any ringing but that is not always the point.

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