Dipped in Raspberry Juice
I couldn't resist blipping another Purple Finch today. For the last week, the numbers of this winter finch have been increasing in my garden, topping out at about 15-20 birds. Experts had predicted that this would be an "irruptive" year for Purple Finches, and they got it right. I've never had such high numbers of this species in my garden - ever.
This year's irruption of finches is due to poor cone and birch seed crops in Canada, driving the birds further south than usual searching for food. It is expected that we may see Pine Siskins and Redpolls here too as the fall progresses into winter. Keeping fingers crossed!
I also had a lovely surprise in among the finches - a hatch-year White-crowned Sparrow, only the second of this species to be seen in the yard this year. The young birds have much less vivid plumage than mature adults, so I nearly missed him in a small group of House Sparrows. You can see him HERE on Flickr.
Another frost warning tonight, so I've covered a small patch of flowers in the garden to protect them just a bit longer. Although it got into the low-30's last night, winds prevented a frost from forming. Once it finally warmed up a little today, the pollinators could be found at the Montauk Diner in the garden, gobbling pollen as fast as possible.
Happy that Hubs will be home tomorrow night - I've missed him.
PS: And I got word from my friends, Barbara and John, that Monarch #224 was safely released yesterday by their daughter. They sent me a snap which I am putting in Extra - you can just see 224 exiting the right side of the frame. Fly safe, little dude.