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Hundreds of birds keep flocking in Antioch backyard

By Gary Bogue
Thursday, March 29th, 2012 at 5:56 am in Cedar waxwings, Robins.

Titmice perching in backyard tree. Photo by Laura Carmody, Antioch, CA
1titmice laura carmody antioch

Gary:
I have been watching hundreds of titmouse’s (titmeese?) flying and perching in the trees that are along my back fence. Behind my fence is open space created by a flood control channel. This activity has been going on for a couple hours now. It has been happening almost every morning for several weeks.

Last week, there were hundreds of cedar waxwings. At first, that is what I thought I was seeing this morning. Then I got my camera out. Before the waxwings, it was a hundred or so robins for several days in a row. My bird book map shows that the waxwings only winter here so I figure I was watching a huge migration happening.

What gives with the swarming robins and titmouse’s? Mind you, I’m NOT complaining.  If I have to live by a highway, I prefer the noise of the bird migration highway.
Laura Carmody, Antioch, California

Titmice perching in backyard tree. Photo by Laura Carmody, Antioch, CA
1titmice laura carmody antioch

Laura:
It’s “titmice.”

Sounds like your trees are in the perfect spot for birds that are flocking through the open space to stop and take a break. When it’s not breeding season, robins and titmice tend to flock (swarm?) together. That’s what’s going on. I just had a good-size flock of titmice zip through my backyard the other day. Right now, there are two robins in my Benicia backyard, so you know what’s going on there. NESTING time!

You’re probably right about the waxwings. I suspect they were getting ready to head back north. It has been kind of a strange winter and spring this year, cold when it should be hot, hot when it should be cold, with some offbeat rainstorms thrown in for good measure. Some birds started nesting early because of the unseasonably warm temperatures, and some have been late for some reason. Just Mother Nature stirring things up to keep us humans on our toes! /Gary

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One Response to “Hundreds of birds keep flocking in Antioch backyard”

  1. Ethan Winning Says:

    I might be the luckiest of the (so far) three of us. For the first time in 38 years, we had (1) a flock of robins, then (2) a flock of waxwings, then (3) titmice, and (4) the nicest event of all, a flock of Chestnut-backed chickadees. We’ve never had more than two or three Chickadees at one time.

    Our birdbath must be very enticing, but they all roost in a laurel tree 50 feet from our back door. Next to the birdbath is a 35 foot Japanese maple and a 15 foot tangelo, both of which offer great protection.

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