Hi Peter, Low numbers here in Mount Tabor as well.
I do have a pair each of downy and hairy wp, but usually have at least double that. Last winter and spring I had a pair of red-bellies who exhibited breeding behavior, but once summer came they moved on. ( I did see one briefly at one of my suet feeders a couple weeks ago, and sometimes see one down the street on my daily walks.)
Also have one male cardinal I catch glimpses of occasionally. I was seeing a pair pretty regularly up until Nov or so.
Juncos are low, chickadees and wb nuthatches the same. I have seen a rb nuthatch pretty regular in the last week or so. Jays are lower, half a dozen or so starlings which is low compared to past years, but their numbers usually increase in late winter.
Like you my goldfinch populations go up and down, and I see 3 or 4 purple/house finches mixed in with them. I haven't paid much attention to mourning doves, but they may be down somewhat. I'll pay more attention now.
I haven't seen an evening grosbeak in several years here. In the mid 90's up until '02 or so I had a large flock (20+), and I couldn't keep my feeders filled fast enough. I LOVED watching them swoop in and devour the seed. Around 2003 they started to dwindle, and now...nothing. I really miss their noisy "cheeps". Purple/house finch numbers were way up then too.
A while back there was a post about some inferior black oil seed that was old and not as nutritious, and birds weren't feeding as much. I had purchased 3- 50 lb bags at TSC on black Friday for $12 a bag, thinking it was a Black Friday deal.
I wonder now if my seed is old and that's why it was so cheap? Is this why numbers are down?
--- On Sat, 1/30/10, Peter Manship <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
From: Peter Manship <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: [VTBIRD] Unusual Feeder season so far
To: [log in to unmask]
Date: Saturday, January 30, 2010, 8:16 AM
I was wondering if others are having an unusual feeder season this year, I am.
It has certainly has been much quieter then passed years here on lake
Pauline. No winter finches or Evening Grosbeaks. I had one Pine Siskin back in
late November, non since then. No Red Breasted Nuthatch, even the Blue jay
numbers are way down. First time here on the lake that there is no wintering
Mallards or Canada geese and the most surprising is no Barred Owls. There has
been 3 around here on the lake for as long as I can remember.
This is what has been seen around here lately, any mix of this list on a given
day is what makes up my feeder day right now:
American Goldfinch 50 ++ this number goes up and down with the weather
Tufted Titmouse 2
Blue jay 1 or 2 now and then
Dark-eyed ( slate ) Junco 7
Morning Dove 3
Hairy Woodpecker 2
Downy Woodpecker 2
White breasted Nuthatch 2
Some days its just chickadees. What are others experiencing?