Date: 3/20/17 5:40 am From: Frank Enders (via carolinabirds Mailing List) <carolinabirds...> Subject: Purple Finch numbers up and down, 16 on 4th, 5 on18th; feeder birds
March 4 and 5, 16 and 14, then weeks with only 2-4 as high counts (many zeroes). The 5 on March 18th were 2 males, 2 females.
House FInches are much more numerous now than in winter at my feeder, and I can see how some bright male House FInches now can be called Purple males, especially when one is trying to count moving, mixed groups.
What do these Purples find to eat? Red maple? Sycamore crop sucked.
The main feeder seems to get "swarmed" by a flock of White-throats, every now and then, sometimes with the finches mixed in, plus Cardinals which are getting hostile toward one another. More often there are long periods with nothing at the feeder, and the up and down daily temperatures seem to affect demand for the sunflower seeds. A thrasher appeared a week ago, after several weeks of no-show, while Red-bellied and Downy Woodpeckers drop by regularly. M. Doves take a lot of seed (up to 7 birds). The local grackle colony still exists, but ignores the feeder, since the snow melted.
No problem with Starlings (ever?) and Cowbirds are not now seen---Redwings, cowbirds and grackles did swarm the feeder in the snow. THis winter I several times heard a House Sparrow, but never got sight nor sights of it.