Sunday, January 26, 2014

Going South for the Winter?

I always thought that robins 
were some of the songbirds that flew south for the winter.
And yet, Friday, when the temperature
barely got above 20 degrees here
and there was snow and ice stubbornly clinging to every surface,
I saw robins and  red-winged blackbirds and starlings
flocking together on the frozen lawn of a house on the north shore of the Lafayette River.

Photo by Ingrid Taylar,

I wondered if the robins were bemused
at the arctic temperatures in their southern playground.
But it turns out that some American robins
spend winter in more northern regions
because they migrate based on food source instead of temperature.
Here's a web site that explains:  

So I guess the robins I saw weren't confused at all.
They apparently know that Tidewater is full of berries to dine on
(and ordinarily, unfrozen earthworms)
all through the winter.

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