Date: 3/8/18 3:42 pm
From: Herb and Sarah Myers <hesemyers...>
Subject: Sparrows and Other Snow Birds
I enjoyed all of the birds coming to the feeders at the Canaan Valley
National Wildlife Refuge today as it blew and snowed heavily off and on
almost all day. The birds were mostly Pine Siskins and American
Goldfinches. The latter are getting more and more yellow. One siski,n that
I saw as well last Saturday, appeared to have a tumor on top of its head.
The larger birds were Mourning Doves, European Starlings and Red-winged
Blackbirds. The Black-capped Chickadees are ever present at those feeders.

The sparrows were more difficult to identify. The Dark-eyed Junco and Song
Sparrows were easy. It was the red-capped sparrows that gave me fits. The
first was fairly clearly an American Tree Sparrow. It was about the same
size as the Song Sparrows and had a breast spot. I was able to get a photo
of it with the Song Sparrows. It returned throughout the day on the ground
under the feeders.

There was another red-capped sparrow that was hunkered down on the tray of
the hanging feeder. My first hunch was a Chipping Sparrow. It had a fairly
dark eye-line and the cap seemed brighter red than the tree sparrow. I
couldn't see a breast spot, but it may have not been visible the way it was
sitting. It also seemed smaller - more like the siskins that it was with.
Unfortunately, I didn't get to see it very long and it never returned -
unless it was the tree sparrow? I guess it will remain a mystery. Herb
Myers, Harman, Randolph County
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