Posted by: atowhee | September 7, 2017

THE GRAY AND THE GOLD

SEPT. 7
We were walking dogs at Wennerberg Park about 10AM today. It was trying to rain without much success. Could not tell the smoke gray from the cloud gray, but there was plenty of gray all around.
My wife can still hear high pitches, “I think I hear waxwings,” she says.
I look up to see a flock of about twenty flutter across the tree-tops in tight formation.
The garden today was center of a gold rush, a large flutter of American Goldfinches descended on the sunflower seed platforms. The finch flock was a mix of House and American Gold. Early in the smoke I could see small birds twittering about in the treetops. Some of those restless goldfinches ended up on our feeders.AG HANGRAG TREEAGANGFINCH STEWHF KIDHF KID2I see this and one other RB Nuthatch numerous times each day, but he is an irresistable camera target, with a lively eye that stares right through you.RBN FRONTTRBN HANDSUM
Yesterday evening I saw the local Bewick’s Wren for the first time in weeks. He was snarling at the dogs as I walked them past his thicket.
There are almost no Robins around now in places where I am used to seeing them.
None at Wennerberg where they nest. The northern migrants have not arrived to replace ours (local nesters), who have gone south. So the Alaskan Robin winter in Vancouver; the British Columbian Robins come nere to Oregon and ours go to San Francisco for some fog while their s go to San Diego for the golf courses. So it goes for this leap-front migrant. The mountain populations also come down to lower elevation in normal winters to escape the snow.
Barn Swallows and Turkey Vultures also not being seen as widely distributed as previously. Is the smoke having some affect? TVs use their noses to find food.
Many plants are dying back already or dropping leaves. Trees are starting to show their end-of-season leaf colors.

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