[Tweeters] Backyard Autumn Birds’ Feast

Dee Dee deedeeknit at yahoo.com
Tue Oct 2 16:01:31 PDT 2018

There has been an aggressive Golden-Crowned Sparrow in our yard the past 4-5 days. It hangs around where the other usuals do (White-Crowned Sparrows, Black-Capped Chickadees, Juncos, Spotted Towhees, Bewicks Wrens, and for a couple of weeks now, a seasonal flock of ~20 Goldfinches). The plump, handsome Golden-Crowned will frequently, purposefully dart/chase at any of the above birds and they always give way, whether at a food source such as our clumps of Sunflowers or two Evergreen Huckleberry bushes, or just rummaging around in the dirt. We’ve had a Golden-Crowned Sparrow in the yard a few other times in past years, but not hanging around for so long that I could really observe a behavior trend. Has anyone else noticed this particularly about these birds, or do I just happen to have a bully-individual in the yard?

A month or so ago the topic of bird-friendly yard plantings came up, and I will re-emphasize that the Pacific NW native Evergreen Huckleberry is a good-looking, great shrub for birds. Just a week ago we had visitors from central Canada who were marveling at (and tasting) the abundant berries they sported. Of course I have enjoyed glancing out and watching the various ways the different birds go after the fruit, but hadn’t really paid attention to how much remained...until this afternoon I finally had time to really take a good look and there is not a berry remaining on them! Of course there are many other good plants, but I can heartily endorse not only the obvious choice of seed-bearing Sunflower plants, but the Huckleberries as well.


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