Every now and then we get an “irruption year” for certain bird species. We did an article on Irruptions for the Habitat Herald a few years ago so you can read more about this phenomena here.
This year is turning out to be an irruption year for Red-breasted Nuthatches and while I have yet to get them at my feeders, they have been spotted right up the street from me, and Joe Coleman has them at his house in Round Hill and Jim Clark has also has them in Leesburg. [Let us know if you see them too!]
Jim, who is an amazing photographer, shared these photos of the one visiting his suet feeder:
Do you have them in your yard? Quite possible! We typically see our resident White-breasted Nuthatches here in Loudoun so keep an eye out for those while checking to see if a Red-breasted is in the mix. For me, it would be a new “yard bird” (yes, I keep one of “those” lists 🙂 ) so I’m hoping one or two will show up at our feeders or in the trees around our yard.
On the blog, 10,000 Birds, Corey wrote an excellent posting about this year’s nuthatch irruption – as he says, “they are exploding southward!”. I recommend his whole posting – here’s a teaser here:
From 10,000 Birds:
Why Are Red-breasted Nuthatches Irrupting?
By Corey • October 1, 2012 •12 comments
There can be no doubt that this year is an irruption year for Red-breasted Nuthatches. Sitta canadensis isn’t just irrupting out of its far northern home but exploding southward, with reports in every southern state except for Florida,