Common Redpolls of the Desert

by Bryce W. Robinson


It has been a harsh winter thus far. Before the deathly cold and snows hit, I found something that really excited me. I was in the middle of the west desert, in the northern part of Utah, and I came upon a flock of Common Redpoll- Cardeulis flammea. This bird is not common in Utah. I hardly expected to find it in the desert, so my excitement was doubled. It was quite the group, nearly thirty or so birds. It was a wonderful surprise, and reminded me that the best birding happens when I am not looking. The surprise is what I treasure in the experience.