Thursday, May 14, 2015

Cedar Waxwings Inundating the Area

The trees have been giving off a shrill, wheezy sound of late. Cedar waxwings have descended onto Mecklenburg County by the hundreds and their characteristic calls seem to be everywhere. Large tulip poplars and their large nectared flowers are the favorite tree right now. but you might have a flock come into a bird bath or a fruiting mulberry tree.

They are just passing through, and a little later than usual this spring. A few pairs will stay behind to nest but there are hard to find by summer.

They are handsome birds. A feather never seems to ruffled or out of place. They appear to be the most social and friendly of birds. you might even see them passing a berry back and forth among themselves, each bird too polite to eat the last one!

Black masks, yellow-tipped tails, gray-blue rumps, prominent crests, and red waxy structures attached to the wings are characteristic field marks of cedar wax wings.

Cedar Waxwings by Lee Weber

In the photo below notice the waxy red structures attached to the wings.

Cedar Waxwing by Cathy Miller