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Anyone seen waxwings in the Peidmont yet?

Hi C-birders,

I was working outside today, alternating between reading my new favorite 
book and watching lots of American Robins visit some kind of fruiting 
tree overhead. It then occurred to me that Cedar Waxwings should be doing 
similar things by around now, but scanning the recent posts to 
Carolinabirds, I only see them mentioned by folks in the foothills like 
Tom Lorenzin and Dwayne and Lori Martin; nothing further east/downhill. 
I've been out about once a week lately, more if you count loitering in my 
backyard, and spent yesterday trail-cutting in the new Johnston Mill 
Nature Preserve, but have not seen or heard a one. It seems strange to be 
reading reports from the Piedmont of Red-breasted Nuthatch, Purple Finch, 
Pine Siskin, and on the coast Snow Bunting; and to read the Massachusetts 
RBA reporting Hoary Redpoll, Boreal Chickadee, and *Bohemian* Waxwing 
(with only ten days left until I fly home for Thanksgiving, oh boy oh 
boy!); but to see no mention of one of the most reliable and consistent 
winter birds for this area. Or perhaps my having lived here for only two 
and a half years is coloring my impression of just how consistent they 
are. The CHBC Checklist for the Triangle lists them as becoming "common" 
by the last week in October. Is it just me, or are the CEWAs behind 

The other noteworthy observation today was that, in the midst of the 
chickadees visiting my sunflower feeder today, I distinctly heard one 
give a two-note "fee-bee" song. I know, they don't get below 4000 feet in 
NC, and the Carolina Chickadee can imitate the Black-cap's song, and the 
two can hybridize, and Black-capped Chickadee is not even on the Triangle 
checklist. Yet somehow, this knowledge could not prevent me from very 
closely examining the bib and secondaries and relative body size of every 
chickadee that visited the feeder for the rest of the morning...

Ever the optimist,


Joshua S. Rose
Duke University
Department of Zoology