New Bird Arrives

Red-breasted Nuthatches showed up at the feeders in the Bird Viewing Exhibit today. It’s been so long since I’d seen a R-b Nuthatch that I’d forgoten whether or not I’d ever seen one here at the Museum. After checking my records, yes, I had seen them here before. Must have been the excitement of the sighting that caused my temporary memory loss.

Anyway, here’s just a few photos:

A Red-breasted Nuthatch reaches into the feeder for a sunflower seed.
This’ll do.
The bird flies off to a nearby perch.
With the seed held in place by a foot, a bit of leverage and pounding with a sharp bill, the seed is opened.

These birds may or may not stay with us, they may move on. But keep an eye out at the bird feeders. If you’re going to see one, the feeders is the most likely place.

In our area, Red-breasted Nuthatches are associated with winter. They are considered an irruptive species, some years you see them, others you don’t. These birds leave the far north and follow the food source going only as far south as they need to in order to find food. Typically insects make up the bulk of their diet but they happily take seeds and suet from feeders. The early bad weather in the northeast may have brought these little bundles of energy into our feeders.

Get out and see them now, they may be gone tomorrow.

2 responses to New Bird Arrives

  1. Avatar
    Judy Overby says:

    Great photos Greg! I was also so excited to see a Red-breasted Nuthatch at my feeder. It was the first of it’s kind I’ve ever seen in my yard. I first saw it about three weeks ago. I remember seeing these nuthatches in Chatham Co. years ago. I sure hope the lively addition sticks around this winter in Lee Co.

    • Greg Dodge
      Greg Dodge says:

      Yes, over the past week or two I’ve been seeing reports of R-b Nuthatches in the state
      http://birding.aba.org/maillist/NzC
      and wondered if we’d get them here at the Museum.
      It’s good to see those birds again. They were an annual sight for me when I lived further north, don’t get to se them every year here, unless I go to the mountains.
      Now we have all three nuthatches coming to the feeders, White-breasted, Brown-headed, and Red-breasted!
      Thanks,

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