Wild about Waxwings

Wild about Waxwings

I love winter. As a photographer, I find it just as magical and wonderful as those summer days, high up on some alpine slope, photographing a field of wildflowers in the waning light of the day. The light in winter is golden, almost all day long. And, I get to see feathered friends I do not get to see any other time of the year. Just like we know that spring is here when Mike has his reindeer dog stand out by the old federal building on Fourth Avenue, we know winter is here when the Bohemian Waxwings, in their chittery flocks in the several hundreds, descend upon our trees.

Occupying a third-floor office in downtown Anchorage, I get a front-row view to the Waxwings, as they flock about, eating at birch buds and mountain ash berries. I love their sound, which reminds me a great deal of the sound that Tribbles make. I find them entertaining, sometimes happy to share a tree with a magpie, and other times taking flight in the hundreds when one comes in for a landing. While most birds flee this part of the world during the cold winter months, Waxwings come to us to visit at our coldest and darkest hours. In addition to their beauty that I appreciate, I value them for their heartiness to come here and join us for the winter.

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