Wednesday, January 30, 2013


 All of 2012 passed, and I didn't see a single Bohemian Waxwing. I was going to make sure that didn't happen this year. Earlier in the year, I saw one only fly overhead. I was really hoping that wouldn't be it for the year.
I have been keeping my eye on the berries lining Quidi Vidi Road. I couldn't imagine they would last this long without robins or waxwings finding them. This week, that happened. On Monday, I decided to take on the cold once again to see what I could find. When I drove south on QV Rd., I saw the flock from a distance. This was it! I pulled off and jumped out of the car to get a really good look. There were 35 Bohemian Waxwings in this one tree alone, with others milling about the area devouring berries.
 After taking in the mass of birds, I finally focused on this one. It plucked a berry.
I watched as it seemed to go through a ritual of enjoyment.

It maneuvered the berry in its beak.

Twice, it tossed the berry in the air and caught it again.

Getting ready to down it, it tipped its head upward, opening its throat.

Then, the berry dropped in.

The bird seemed quite satisfied, and I thought the event was over. Not quite.

It opened its mouth and throat one more time, to allow the berry to move smoothly down its gullet. Or? Maybe, release any gasses that may be trapped within.

 These birds are absolutely beautiful. I stood and stared in amazement. What a treat!
And then, I found myself to be the object of observation. This little one seemed to ask me, "Are you going to watch me eat, too?" It wasn't long before the large flock flew off to the park at the end of Cavell Ave. When the berry supply it gone, so will these birds leave us. Unless, that is, someone entices to them to stay by putting out a supply of berries and/or cut-up apple pieces.
I saw four Bohemian Waxwings at Bowring Park yesterday where they have almost cleaned the berries in the area.

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