Thursday, April 23, 2009

Stormy Weather Buntings

It has been a snowy day with a strong east wind combined with fresh snow to make a very white day. With the drifting snow mixed with fresh falling snow visibility has been around 1 mile or less. It was in this white swirling world that our first local snow buntings arrived for the new season. The first one arrived at 1100 hr and was happy to find the feeder and went right to eating. The second male arrived about two hours later, and the first bird wasn’t to happy about having to share the food dish. It is always fun to watch them bathing in the soft snow, digging their heads in the fluffy snow and working it around then shaking off, real snow birds.

The first bird still had a lot of brown on his head and part of a breast band since he is a second year bird (SYR) having been born last June. The second male is at least older than SYR and only had a small amount of brown on his head.

The attached photo shows the SYR male. There is a warm front

moving SNBU1_0459north over the Brooks Range tonight bring warmer temperatures and a wind change back to the west. By 2100 hr we were already starting to warm up with a temperature of +16F. This weather front may bring more bunting north.


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Arctic Smoke Signals by James W. Helmericks is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.