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red maple leaf

Hardy Redpolls

February 14, 2018

Categories: Nature Notes

By Wolf Ridge Naturalist

What animal can withstand -65 degree F temperatures, has a pouch in their esophagus to store food and dig tunnels in the snow?

The answer is the common redpoll, a small passerine bird about half the size of your fist. These little, hardy birds spend their winters in the arctic tundra and boreal forest. While they may spend their entire lives in the far north, they migrate erratically, following seed supplies.

It is not a common sight here, but currently, at Wolf Ridge, there are dozens of this beautiful, red-headed bird flocking to the feeders by the Education Building and the Science Center.