26 February 2009

White-winged Crossbill Irruption

White-winged Crossbills breed in Utah, but only in very small numbers. This fall, I found my first White-winged Crossbill ever up Logan Canyon. Now, they seem to be turning up all over the place, thanks to a large influx of crossbills from the north. Stephanie and I found a flock of them in Clarkston during the Great Backyard Bird Count a couple of weekends ago (photo above), and earlier this week I saw and heard a large flock of them at the Logan Cemetery. Today Stephanie and I went back to the cemetery to try to photograph them. We heard them fly overhead several times, but never got a good look or any photos. With all the spruces there, it is likely they'll hang around. Maybe I'll try again tomorrow. This year, instead of trying to see as many species as I can in the county, I'm trying to get better at bird photography. And White-winged Crossbills are a species I'd really like to photograph better.

Update: Thanks to a call from my friend Jason, who notified me when he relocated the USU White-wingeds feeding closer to the ground, I got a few better shots. Here are a few of them (below).

No comments: