Observations at feeder in Massachusetts and the surrounding area.

Time: 12pm-1:30pm
Date: March 1st 2020
Location: Stow, MA on the edge of state conservation land.
Weather: Sunny with few fluffy clouds and light wind, in the low 30s during the day.
Habitat: Suet and seed feeders in backyard that backs on conservation land. About 30 feet from the edge of a mixed wood forest. Pond and streams nearby, as well as good edge habitat.

Many of these birds were visibly puffed up to protect from the cold of the day, especially since it had been warm around this time and this day was an exception. Many of them were arriving at the feeder in groups, and seemed to spend most of their time foraging at the feeders or on the ground where it was clear of snow banks.

For the woodpeckers, in warmer months they probably would not be seen frequently at feeder like this as there would be more bugs in the trees for them to have access too. Same with some of the smaller oscines who will eat bugs/worms in the warmer months, and maybe natural seeds/berries in the spring and fall, but in the winter they appreciate the supplement that the feeders provide.

The hawks would probably overnight in lower branches, this would allow them to have a clearer view of small rodents that may be nocturnal or crepuscular. The nuthatch and the woodpeckers may commonly use holes in dead stands at various heights. The small oscines may congregate together in groups to maintain warmth at night, they may choose to be further into the forest and at mid-high height to limit the wind that would hit them over night.

Posted by rrhender rrhender, March 18, 2020 19:29

Observations

Photos / Sounds

What

Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis

Observer

rrhender

Date

March 1, 2020

Place

Stow, MA (Google, OSM)

Description

Two red tailed hawks in tree, in the middle of the pictures. Believed to be an adult and a juvenile, as their coloring was different though both had the classic prominent red tail. They sat in this position for about 15 minutes before the juvenile flew off followed by the adult.

Photos / Sounds

What

White-breasted Nuthatch Sitta carolinensis

Observer

rrhender

Date

March 1, 2020

Place

Stow, MA (Google, OSM)

Description

An individual nuthatch came to the feeder. It tended to make an appearance when no other birds were present. It would hang out on the railing for a little while before flitting to the feeder then flying away when a bigger bird arrived.

Photos / Sounds

What

Tufted Titmouse Baeolophus bicolor

Observer

rrhender

Date

March 1, 2020

Place

Stow, MA (Google, OSM)

Description

These titmouse seemed to be very attracted to the feeder. They would be there when there were other smaller birds there like Juncos and Chickdees. I observed approximately 4 of these over the time that I was watching though they would fly back and forth from the surrounding trees when bigger birds like woodpeckers arrived.

Photos / Sounds

What

Red-bellied Woodpecker Melanerpes carolinus

Observer

rrhender

Date

March 1, 2020

Place

Stow, MA (Google, OSM)

Description

Two of these were seen at a suet feeder. Believed to be a male and a female. They were never at the feeder at the same time though it seemed as though they may have been in the area together. The female had the more subtle orangey head, while the male have the distinct red cap.

Photos / Sounds

What

Downy Woodpecker Dryobates pubescens

Observer

rrhender

Date

March 1, 2020

Place

Stow, MA (Google, OSM)

Description

Unsure how many were seen due to it coming back and forth over the time of observation. Assumed to be a single but could have others around.

Photos / Sounds

What

Dark-eyed Junco Junco hyemalis

Observer

rrhender

Date

March 1, 2020

Place

Stow, MA (Google, OSM)

Description

Lots of these juncos were seen at a seed feeder. Especially when chickadees were also present. 6-8 were seen at various times, though abandoned the feeders when bigger birds came in.

Photos / Sounds

What

Black-capped Chickadee Poecile atricapillus

Observer

rrhender

Date

March 1, 2020

Place

Stow, MA (Google, OSM)

Description

4-5 chickadees came to both the suet and seed feeder. They were generally followed by juncos and titmouse'.

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