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Monday, March 14, 2011

Common Redpolls

Common Redpolls swarmed our feeders today.

Not enough room on the perches for them all,

so they landed all over the ground in the fenced in area beneath our feeders. We fed them hulled sunflower.

A flock of over 300 Common Redpolls of visited the feeders today. They were very flighty and would land briefly, swarming the feeders, then take off, swirl out in the air, then swarm the feeders briefly again. It's hard to convey in photos what this is like, but in reality it's awesome!!

These are far northern "irruptive" finches that come down into the U.S. when the seeds up north are scarce in winter. This is a HUGE YEAR for these finches here.

If you live in New England, add more feeders, offer hulled sunflower and thistle and you too can have this!!


The Zen Birdfeeder said...

Holey moley. We had a high of 110 on the first day of GBBC. Never had 300!!!
They make such a racket, this must've been awesome to see AND hear.

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

So that's where the Redpolls are.

Kah-Wai Lin said...

Great blog with nice pictures!

Kah Wai

Larry Master said...

I couldn't agree more about attracting more redpolls by adding more (niger and hulled sunflower)feeders! In my experience the more feeders, the more redpolls (assuming your budget allows!). During the last two big southward irruptions we have had 12-20 feeders out and 300-400 redpolls a day, usually with a ratio of 1 Hoary per 100 Common Redpolls here in the north-central Adirondacks. Some images from this year's irruption are posted at

Larry Landolfi said...

I live in Rochester, New Hampshire and noticed about a month ago a type of "sparrow" I've never seen before. After MUCH google searching I found that our back yard feeder has been invaded by redpolls. Never in my life have I seen our 4 pound capacity feeder completely engulfed with birds. As I jokingly told people,"It's like being on the set of Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds"....... only much safer!" Going out there with a hand full of shelled sunflower seeds has been a unique experience, let me tell you. It's not uncommon for me to have 10-15 redpolls in my hand, up my arm, on top of my head, and even on a few occasions actually clutching the rims of my glasses just waiting their turn! These are about as "unwild" a wild animal there is on the entire planet Earth. I love them, and will truly miss them when they have to leave for northern Canada. In 9 years living here this is the first time they've ever come around. I'm soaking up every second I can with these totally over-friendly birds. It's a blast!

Julianna said...

Lovely photos!! What is the name of the combination feeder with the reddish top and bottom in the photo with the swarm of redpolls?