Bird feeders attract unusual, lovely visitors

The hill country in winter is not the place to find many birds. A few sedentary species are there, but they tend to gather in flocks and leave huge gaps of birdless territory between. You can drive and stop at a dozen places on back roads through the deep forest and never see or hear a single bird.

There were no cones on the trees there and no finches feeding, but there was an artificial bird feeder filled with black oil sunflower. A chickadee came to select a seed and then another and another. These were the first birds encountered in an hour’s drive through the forest.

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