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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Redpolls are coming to a feeder near you!

Common Redpoll, male

Common Redpoll, female, who is about to

dive off the perch to go to our feeder.

Common Redpolls are seen in flocks and move or "irrupt" down into the U.S. when their winter food supply is scarce.

Attract them with feeders that allow for multiple birds to feed at once. They like hulled sunflower, which we are feeding here, and Nyjer (thistle) seed and finch mixes.

Common Redpolls are being sighted in NH and elsewhere and predictions are for more of them to show up and move south. We had 10 at our feeders recently here in southwest NH. What a treat to see these little "irruptive" red-capped finches from far northern areas (breed in Canada and AK) who move from their usual winter range when their food supply of seeds and cones is sparse.

There is another, less commonly seen, species of redpoll, called Hoary Redpoll, which also can move down into the northern parts of the U.S. in winter. Hoary vs. Common Redpoll is a very tricky ID. Here's the page on Hoary Redpoll with 8 photos, in our all new The Stokes Field Guide to the Birds of North America, which gives you all the most complete and up-to-date clues you need on Hoary Redpolls. There are 10 photos and 2 pages on the ID of Common Redpoll in our new guide. What, you didn't get The Stokes Field Guide to the Birds of North America for Christmas? You can always use those gift cards for it. Congratulations, and enjoy, to those of you who did get our new guide from Santa, you're all set to nail those redpoll IDs.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Neat pics and info, I hope to see some Redpolls here in Bangor, ME. Just finished with this blizzard last night. Saw your comment on Facebook about how busy your feeders were during the blizzard in NH. I have always taken my feeders in before a big snow thinking the birds would not be around - wrong! I purposely left all my feeders out during this severe blizzard, and I could not believe how many birds I had feeding, even during the height of the storm, high wind, heavy snow. I certainly have a new respect for the tenacity of these little creatures! I'm so glad I saw your Facebook comment, and will never remove my feeders again.

Ruth said...

I got my new Field Guide as a Christmas gift and am already enjoying it.The photos are lovely.I was surprised to see that Christian Artuso has some of his photos in it.I have met and chatted with him on a couple of occasions.
Blessings,ruth

The Zen Birdfeeder said...

Redpolls arrived this morning in our yard in eastern New York. We've been anxiously awaiting their arrival and enjoyed seeing about 20 of them!

Ellen said...

Two redpolls showed up at my feeders today. I was so happy to see them again!

Kerri said...

I noticed 5 redpolls at our feeders on Wednesday and Friday (Jan 5th and 7th). What a treat! We're in upstate NY, below Utica. I didn't see them at all last winter but there were a few the previous winter, along with the irruption of pine siskins.
I'm hoping to see siskins again this winter (missed seeing them last winter).
Your photos of the sweet little redpolls are beautiful.