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Aaron

Pine Siskin Boom?

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Anyone else seeing a more than average number of Pine Siskins around?

Here in BC, I would normally see about 10 or so throughout the day, but this year my counts are averaging 50+ in a span of about 2 hours. I even saw one flock of 74. My feeder can easily have over 20 birds around as well. It’s just constant pine siskins no matter what time of day. Honestly can’t escape them!
Just have never seen so many before and was wondering if anyone else is noticing the same thing?

The local Merlins seem to be very happy 

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Posted (edited)

Ron Pittaway does an annual prediction of irruptive species every fall, although it's way too early for him to release the 2020 / 21 forecast.  He takes a lot of factors into account, including available food sources.  Short version, expect to see more of a species at your feeders when local food sources have underproduced for the year.  This force the birds to expand their range to find enough to eat.  It might be worth checking the 20 / 21 report when it comes out.  If he says Pine Siskins are on the move because there isn't expected to be enough white spruce cones this winter; what you're seeing now may be one of his indicators.

http://www.jeaniron.ca/2019/wff19.htm

Here's an interesting report on how Pittaway does it.

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/news/how-ron-pittaway-developed-his-acclaimed-winter-finch-forecast/

Edited by Charlie Spencer
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Cool, thanks for the links! I’ll definitely be looking forward to when it comes out. 
I’ve also been seeing lots of Evening grosbeaks, but I don’t really know if it’s more than usual as I only became familiar with the species early this year. Though 26 together seems like a lot.
Would be nice to have a irruption this winter. I’m missing my redpolls!

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We normally don’t get them in the summer, but I’ve had a few small groups this summer, so I guess you could say it’s a increase 

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Hmm well will have to wait and see I guess. 

Had a new record of 58 just around my bird feeder earlier this morning. Crazy

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Interesting side note. My grandfather usually has close to 80 siskins on his feeder. When I visited him a month ago, the population was down to 5 or so. 

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A few days ago my yard was full of birds. Waxwings and robins galore. There were large flocks of siskins flying around and perching in the trees but I haven’t seen them since. Not a single siskin  came to my feeder. 

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22 hours ago, Colton V said:

I know nothing about Redpolls. Is there a chance I will be able to see some this winter in Oregon?

About one a winter seems to show up in Portland (where I believe you are). Large flocks can be found around walla walla Washington, but I know that’s a good 4 hour drive from Portland. I don’t know the territory there. I’ve never been East in Oregon of the dalles. 

Edited by Connor Cochrane
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3 minutes ago, Connor Cochrane said:

About one a winter seems to show up in Portland

Wow, that's it? Guess I'll just have to keep a sharp eye out.

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