Orion Art at White Dog Studio

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maryann@orionwhitedog.com for inquiries. To see more of my paintings visit my website at http://www.orionwhitedog.com/

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Sunday, December 7, 2008

White Winged Crossbills

Determined to go out and get some fresh but cold air yesterday, I took my binoculars, my camera and Woodie Dog Sedivy out back for a small walk. We've been getting snow consistently for the last few weeks with one Alberta Clipper after another bringing wave after wave of Lake Effect snow. I've decided we live in a snow globe. (It's really the snow belt, one of only 5 in the world) Despite the sometimes difficult driving and constant snow removal, it can be beautiful.

While admiring these apples, I saw and heard a new bird for my yard. In fact, this is a life bird for me (one I've never seen before.) While this photo isn't the best (would love a new camera with more zoom, this is just a small point and shoot), it does document the White Winged Crossbill. There were and still are about 2 dozen in and around my yard. This bird is an irruptive species. Meaning that they don't normally winter here (common north of here, in Canada) but will move for food as needed. (food source is low) Right now in Ohio, there are postings daily on the Ohio Bird List Serve from birders allover the state who are seeing these beautiful birds. I hope my flock takes up residence for a while.


  1. So very exciting...this is the kind of experience that makes me smile for days...lucky you.
    I also hope that this little flock stays close by for a time so you can savor the rarity...keep the feeders stocked!

  2. Yes, seeing the xbills made me smile for the rest of the day. The best part of it was that I was feeling cooped in and getting kind of edgy/grouchy and decided to go outside to clear my head!

  3. You were right...they were out there in the apple tree!!! I wish I would have still been there to see them in the snow globe that doesn't stretch to my non snow globe on the west side!!! They are beautiful!!

  4. MJ, Maybe next time you enter the snow globe they'll be here...a Christmas gift for you!