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8859Re: [BirdYak] Re: Bully robin:)

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  • Rich712@aol.com
    Dec 28, 2012
      Kevin and Yakkers,

      Here is a clip from Birds of North America Online regarding Cedar Waxwings:

      "Many aspects of the natural history of the Cedar Waxwing reflect its dietary specialization on sugary fruits. Its flocking and unpredictable nomadic movements are typical of animals that feed on patchily distributed foods, such as fruits. Even during the breeding season, the Cedar Waxwing exhibits much lower levels of return to former breeding sites than other passerines. In addition, the breeding season of the Cedar Waxwing is late in the year, coincident with the seasonal availability of summer-ripening fruits. The sociality of individuals within winter flocks and the lack of territoriality during the breeding season also are associated with the reliance of this species on locally superabundant fruit crops."

      Many paragraphs on the Cedar's preference of sugary fruits...it can live for two months on a diet solely of fruit. Our valley's orchadists might dispute the "patchily distributed" given the acreage devoted to fruits in the valley but that is summer and this is winter. BNA Online also mentions the Cedar's gape as a limiting factor for the size of fruit consumed. Anyone ever see them "bite" a chunk off a large fruit or are they gulpers...swallow it all or not at all?

      Therefore, it appears that fruit would be the primary attraction and/or reason to move. I also like the "whim"...winter finches also seem to appear and disappear from food sources. They have also been documented as dying from ingesting too many fermented fruits.


      -----Original Message-----
      From: kevinslucas <vikingcove@...>
      To: BirdYak <BirdYak@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Fri, Dec 28, 2012 10:52 am
      Subject: [BirdYak] Re: Bully robin:)

      In the past few weeks I've not seen nor heard flocks of Cedar Waxwings at the Yakima Arboretum. From a couple of recent visits to Elmwood Cemetery in Toppenish it's clear to me that a place can have a huge flock, then none in a half hour, but I'd come to expect to see waxwings at the Arboretum on nearly every visit.
      I see on eBird that a large flock was sighted recently near 60th Avenue & Walnut.
      Can anyone share insights into what inspires their local patterns of movement -- temperature, snow, fruit crops, juniper berries (like at Elmwood), whim?

      Kevin Lucas
      Yakima, WA
      #AOLMsgPart_1_94d32d99-0568-45be-b110-d5832fa993ac td{color: black;}

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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