Daily Archives: March 22, 2015

Tough and tufted

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Tufted Titmouse, a daily visitor.

When I count them weekly in winter for Project Feederwatch, I only come up with two to four. But I always have a sense there are more of them.

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They like black oil sunflower seeds, peanuts and suet dough.

They don’t hold still for long, so I find I have few photos of them though they are probably the number two most frequent visiting species after chickadees, their Paridae cousins.

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Spunky sprites, they have endured a tough winter.

Tufted Titmice hoard food in fall and winter, a behavior they share with many of their relatives, including the chickadees and tits. Titmice take advantage of a bird feeder’s bounty by storing many of the seeds they get. Usually, the storage sites are within 130 feet of the feeder. The birds take only one seed per trip and usually shell the seeds before hiding them.

Snowy marsh

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Chunky white snow in a salt marsh in Rye, N.H.

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Hey, the snow lumps are swans! Mute swans, to be exact. The orange bill is the key indicator.

A native of northern and central Eurasia, the Mute Swan was introduced into North America to grace the ponds of parks and estates. Escaped individuals have established breeding populations in several areas, where their aggressive behavior threatens native waterfowl.

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Wake me up when it’s really spring.

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