Even with the dry weather, food is still plentiful around the forest, so I don’t expect much activity at my feeders until after the first killing frost. That always spurs the local avian residents to appear on my back deck and investigate the new food source.
The winter finch forecast for this upcoming winter sounds pretty dismal, so I am not expecting to have any at my feeders. The finch forecast comes courtesy of Ron Pittaway, who’s been forecasting the arrival or not of northern finches for some years now. You can read his full report here: http://www.jeaniron.ca/2013/forecast.htm
The 2013-14 finch forecast shows that this is not an irruption year and that Ontario’s cone crops are in good supply. It’s only when that cone crop is poor to non-existent that large numbers of pine grosbeak, purple finch, crossbills, redpolls and the like head south in search of food. The only exception to the good crop comes from white pines. However, the crop in the Adirondacks is excellent this year so whatever finches do head south may well not go any further than there. And no movement of red-breasted nuthatches is expected this year.
So my feeding will likely be limited to the local birds, unless something from the north unexpectedly heads south. I’m not going to count on that, though. Perhaps this will be a good year for me to concentrate on finding a few unusual sparrows at Roundtop. I would be happy with that.