Birds by the numbers in New Hampshire Audubon Society's annual Backyard Winter Bird Survey
At Achilles Agway in Milford, Butch Green keeps lots of bird feeders on hand for folks who enjoy watching their feathered friends.Nancy Bean Foster
Birds such as the tufted titmouse and the northern cardinal made quite a showing in 2013 and were found in record numbers in New Hampshire, despite the fact that there was a time when titmice and cardinals were only found in the southern United States during the winter.
Nickerson, a wildlife biologist and a trustee for New Hampshire Audubon, said he sees lots of chickadees and juncos in his yard, but he's seeing more color lately as well.
Nickerson also said that dozens of robins, who once spent their winters in southern climes and announced the arrival of spring on their return, have been staking out his crabapple tree recently."They go nuts for the crabapples," Nickerson said. "They knock them down on the ground and eat them."
"Thanks to the Backyard Winter Bird Survey we can see how their populations have increased and we can watch for species that are in trouble," said Hunt. And sometimes that trouble can be identified when the surveys done by citizens reveal an absence of a certain species of bird.
Burton "Butch" Green of Achille Agway in Milford said that having the right food will bring the right birds. Species like robins, who either decided to hunker down for the winter or have returned to New Hampshire early love meal worms and fruit, while bluebirds really enjoy suet and woodpeckers crave nuts.
"The number one seller is black oil," said Green. "It's got the fat the birds can benefit from and the small birds can break the shells easily."
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