I live in the west end on Kawartha Heights Blvd. Behind our backyard is Kawartha Heights Park.We have our feeders out all the time.We`ve had an abundance of birds this fall: white & red breasted nuthatches, blue jays, cardinals, chickadees, finches, downy woodpeckers, etc. However, since the New Year, the birds have stopped coming. We only get the odd finch & chickadee now. We were away over New Years & we might have had a hawk visit our feeders. Is this why the birds are staying away? Last year late in January we had a robin come & he stayed the winter. We kept a supply of raisons & he was happy. We also have a heated bird bath so he had water. He even took a bath or two in the winter. I hope he comes back.

(You seem to have everything that birds could want: great habitat (given your location, I imagine there is cover in the way of trees, shrubs, etc. for the birds near the feeders), heated birdbath, large park near by, etc. I assume you’re offering different foods (i.e., black oil sunflower seed, niger seed, suet) and spreading some seed on the ground (niger and/or millet) for ground feeders like juncos. There’s lots of redpolls around now and they love the niger seed. Apart from that, maybe you do indeed have a hawk and/or barred owl in the neighbourhood that are keeping the birds away. There are very few robins around this year (lack of wild food) and cardinals often flock up in the winter and don’t visit feeders to the same extent. Other resident species are in typcial numbers, however, from what I’m seeing and hearing. All that being said, a mid-winter lull at the feeder is not uncommon! D.M.)

Location: Kawartha Heights Boulevard
Observer: Jack Mormul

Categories: Sightings

Drew Monkman

I am a retired teacher, naturalist and writer with a love for all aspects of the natural world, especially as they relate to seasonal change.