January 7 – Waxwings and Starlings…

 

…look nothing like each other really, except their silhouettes are similar when seen from a distance in flight. Today one of my goal birds, the only one that I finally found, was a European Starling. It’s rare that someone actually looks for a starling, but in Alaska they are often hard to find and I didn’t have one on my year list yet. It was a beautiful morning with snow still remaining on the spruce trees.

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At first the closest things to starlings were flocks of Bohemian Waxwings, many flocks of waxwings.

Finally in the Turnagain neighborhood I heard a starling singing after a flock of waxwings flew by and left the area. In a tall spruce tree very near me I found seven starlings, which took off, so I could not add a starling photo to my year list of photos. I had a small flock of American Robins there too but the photos were fuzzy.

After doing a few errands, I went to the Airport Heights neighborhood – more waxwings and more robins. And then, there was a single starling in a tree among a small flock of robins that were feeding in nearby fruiting trees, and I got its photo.

It’s funny how little it takes to make me happy, especially in a non-big year! When I got home, there was another flock of waxwings in our back yard. Although I thought I heard a starling in the distance, I did not see it, so I still do not have starling on our yard list. Probably a good thing, since I recall that they nearly ate us out of house and home when we lived in an area where starlings are common.

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