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Windy Day, Fisher, and Crows - UPDATE March 17, 2024

Redpoll male

With the temperature this morning at 13 degrees and wind gusts up to 21 mph, a pretty male redpoll sat with its feathers fluffed for insulation even though redpolls live mainly up toward the Arctic Ocean. For a blue jay, the wind was pushing its crest high and making it flutter in the wind. Both birds were interested mainly in sunflower seeds that some nutritionists call a super food.

Blue jay in windBlue jay in wind

It was good to see the male fisher doing his usual, making quick decisive movements on the second floor deck, ignoring me and just looking for food. Then his visit caused a stir. Crows covered the ground below the second floor deck eating peanuts with no shells that I had tossed out for the deer. Soon the fisher had enough on the second floor deck and descended a tree, making the crows take off as fast as a flock. The fisher had all the peanuts to himself, and he proved that he was really an omnivore by digging into the peanuts. Like the fox did and bears do, the gusts of wind put him on alert, sitting tall, listening, and smelling for danger with his mouth open as if he has a vomeronasal organ, which I don’t know. As usual, he didn’t pay attention to me in the window with a camera and let me take a shot of his long chest blaze. Then I noticed that the crows had retreated to their beaver lodge staging area where they first land upon coming here in the morning. Two days in a row I counted the crows on and around the beaver lodge and got 33 and 34, but I don’t know if they hadn’t all arrived at that point, or I was missing some on the back side of the lodge. I tried to count them but one took off and shortly they all did the same, letting me count 61 including several that are not in the picture. They landed in the usual trees, the fisher was gone, and then soon reclaimed the yard.

Fisher maleFisher male

 Crows at Beaver Lodge  Crows at Beaver Lodge
Crows on beaver lodge

The fox put a good cap on the day with his visits after making me feel good the previous evening when I saw him depart down the steps from the second floor deck and trot up the driveway heading out. I didn’t know what he’d do if I stepped out and called “Come fox” when he was over 150 feet away. To my pleasant surprise, he stopped, turned around as I said it again and looked to see what I would do next. I tossed a piece of food, and he came running the instant he heard it hit the deck. It felt good to know we were communicating.

Thank you for all you do,
Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center

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