Crossbills in the Snow

There are quite a lot Common Crossbills in the Black Forest in southern Germany this year. I spent some time in the field, trying to get sound recordings of them for my PhD.

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Common Crossbill – Fichtenkreuzschnabel – Loxia curvirostra. Singing male

These little creatures are breeding right at the moment between all the wind, ice and snow. They are doing this, as their typical food ressource – seeds of Norway Spruce – is soon easily accessible. When it gets a little bit warmer, cones open and then food is wating for the Crossbills.

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Male Common Crossbill sitting likely above its nest

I tried to photograph them next to a road, where they regularly licked salt from. Wating was shortened by a nice Coal Tit.

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Coal Tit – Tannenmeise – Periparus ater

Finally the Crossbills approached – not exactly where I hoped them to perch – but I was pleased with the outcome.

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Common Crossbill – Fichtenkreuzschnabel – Loxia curvirostra
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Common Crossbills, licking salt on a road
Crossbills in the Snow