Posted by: Jim E | February 17, 2012

The Masked Marauders Are Back…Holly Berries…Cedar Waxings Stole All…

Well, the masked marauders are back today…the last year I caught the robbers, it was March 4, 2010…last year I missed them…I don’t remember if they came or not…just can’t remember if the stripped the Holly berries last year…but in 2110 I was at my desk doing taxes…and out of the corner of my eye, I saw all kinds of birds fluttering about…finally I looked, and saw many birds…maybe 10 or so in the Holly…eating the berries…that year I saw Robins, Bluebirds along with the many Cedar Waxwings…but last year, no pictures…so lots of this years will have to do…

Cedar Waxwings survive on fruit, for the most part…some protein from bugs, but mostly berries…and I remember them in Minnesota too…this time of year…mid-winter or so, along they would come in a pack, well, I guess it would be a flock…and attack the ornamental Crab apple tree in the front yard…and in minutes they would have the entire tree bare…and so it was yesterday…I came home from somewhere and Judie was taking pictures out my office window…the front of our house has two Holly trees…and this year they had a good supply of berries…and Judie called me in…and there there were…

There were about 30 or so in this flock…and others down the street at other houses…eating away…they would fly away after a bit, and rest up in a tree across the street…I’m sure this was happening all over the area…but this time of year they come in flocks…they stripped our trees of berries in less than 15 minutes…so here are a flurry of birds…and a flurry of pictures that Judie took…not all of them but some…notice the birds taking a break up in the neighbors tree…

Notice also the colors on the bird…they are so distinct, almost like someone colored them by hand…and notice the yellow on the tip of the tail and the red on their back…just beautiful…and their mask on their head and the crest…and they gather by the hundreds to do their marauding all across the country…our yard only had 30 or so…but other were all over the neighborhood…but the berries are perfect for eating…they are not for human consumption…after a few freezes they become more mellow for the birds to eat…

As I we go through the pictures, you can see some things clearer…like the colors of the feathers…you will have to watch for them at your house…but they do act quickly, only 15 minutes at our house…and they go on from there…

Only a couple more to share at this time…it is fun to see nature up close…and our windows in the front of the house are basically floor to almost the ceiling…so we can see all of the bushes from my desk…it was worth the 15 minutes…and they are so beautiful…colors so perfect…and what a behavior to see…how they can eat that many berries at one time is amazing…

One more of these amazing birds…notice again the colors of their feathers…what beautiful marauders, masks and all…it was a great time watching them…hope you enjoyed the pictures too…

Don’t forget, spring is on the way…and with spring come the migrating birds, back for the summer…and some of our birds head back up north…so it’s the beginning of the “big change-over” again…so enjoy all this wonder…have a great weekend…

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Responses

  1. Wow, great shots I saw this bird for the first time last summer when we went camping. Very pretty! Have a great week! President’s Day yay a day off from the jungle hahaha

    • Saun…thanks…they are a beautiful bird…subdued colors of the color wheel…but beautiful none the less…have a great day off today…hope you are enjoying the warm…a winter of no winter…we will have 70 degree weather again this week…a couple of days anyway…but in the 50’s and 60’s the rest of the time…I smell tornado season coming…not a fun time down here…but along with that comes flowers, such a lot of flowers…bushes, trees and flowers…daffodils already up and blooming, trees budding, much more coming…I guess I’m ready…they don’t ask permission…thanks again…still enjoying your pictures from day to day…by the way, I’m not enjoying Matt’s trip around New York as much as I did his trip out west…I’m kinda hoping I will “come around”…maybe its cities don’t appeal to me as much as open fields and trees…the “following” doesn’t seem to be there…I keep trying…thanks again Saun…have a great day…Jim E

  2. Same here I check Matt’s page about every two weeks. Sad day around here my Smuckers passed away today totally unexpected sure am going to miss his wheaton kisses and his tail a wagging. Have a great weekend until next time.

    Saun

    • Saun…so sorry about your dog…always enjoyed your pictures of him and your tribute to him online with pictures I saw today…they sure become part of the family…no, a family member…I don’t think any of us knew that going in…I know that was the way it was for us…we thought, “Oh just a dog, a pet”…nope, it became much more…and we still miss ours…I just didn’t want to go through that again…so we didn’t replace him…most people do get one again…but we haven’t…anyway sorry for you and your family…trees and bushes are blooming down here to celebrate new life…I guess we all should do that too…cherry trees blooming…soon bradford pear and hundreds of others…you have a good weekend and week to come…Jim E

  3. Those are fantastic pictures of the Waxwings, Jim! What handsome birds, I always enjoy hearing their soft whistles. Sometimes they pass berries to each other, which is always fun to see.

    • W.S….I try to catch the Cedar Waxwings every year pilfering our holly berries…don’t catch them every year…but did two years ago and this year…they are beautiful…they are a sharing bunch…two years ago, they had Robins and Bluebirds in the successful robbery…the bushes were covered with birds…thanks…have a great week…Jim E


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