Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)
Elegant and exotic in appearance, the Cedar Waxwing is a wintertime visitor to berry-laden trees and shrubs in the garden. Its high-pitched call—too shrill for some observers to hear—is often the only clue that a flock is on the move, high in the air. Alighting hurriedly on a berry bonanza, these birds have been known to get "drunk" from eating fermented berries!
Photo © Tom Clifton
Waxwings are non-breeding visitors only to the Monterey area, being present from October to May. They are attracted to native trees like alder, madrone, and maple, and native shrubs like manzanita, toyon, holly-leaf cherry, coffeeberry, blackberry, elderberry, snowberry, and huckleberry. Various non-native shrubs attract the birds also, notably holly and pyracantha (firethorn). So, the next time you notice berries nearby, keep your eyes peeled for this attractive avian visitor!
We at the Wild Bird Haven wish you a Happy Holiday season!
Watercolor © Carole Rose. Available as a notecard or a print!