You won't find this in The Kingbird (a New York State Avian Records Committee Publication). It is certainly not an extraordinary feat by any means when it comes to records in the city and overwintering birds. However, it is a significant record for my backyard and on a personal level a most satisfying achievement that I was able to keep two Baltimore Orioles happy through this winter of 2015. These birds should have been overwintering somewhere in Central or South America but they chose my backyard for what turned out to be a tough winter. The first Baltimore Oriole showed up on December 31st 2014 and the second bird showed on January 6th 2015, although I suspect it might have been there as early as the 4th since on that day I noticed a brighter bird and wondered if it was a different BAOR.
These two birds were not like my usual wintering backyard visitors like the expected White-throated Sparrows. They were royalty, deserving the type of high maintenance treatment for those special guests. And they certainly got that, keeping me on a tight schedule. Always ensuring that I kept their feeder well stocked with fruits and live meal worms. It got to the point where they would chastise (chatter at me) me if I was late in refilling their feeder and I rather enjoy them flying right in and standing over my head whilst I refilled theirs and other feeders. The backyard birds for me hold a very special place as it was those visitors that rekindled a love for birds that was always there since my childhood.
Tags: Baltimore Oriole, Backyard Birding, Queens, NYC