Today’s forecast maximum temperature is minus 12 centigrade and starting tonight we are in for three days of snow with at least 30cm by tomorrow and blowing snow warnings … a lot of fun.

The feeders are starting to get some attention as it gets colder, of course, which is nice because we like the birds here but also because I can practice using my latest photographic toy. I have invested in a (second hand) industrial grade flash unit and a “Better Beamer” (check the link) to throw the light out up to 100m and illuminate small birds in dark corners. I am probably the last reasonably serious bird photographer to invest in one of these and I expect great things, especially in the spring when the small forest birds return. The give-away that oine has been used is the small reflective glint in the eyes of the birds … it’s the ornithophotographic equivalent of red-eye in people.

Black-capped Chickadee somewhat fluffed out in the cold after taking a drink at the heated water bath we provide for them in the winter months

Dark-eyed (Slatey-backed) Junco

This very fluffed-up chap is a White-breasted Nuthatch … not exactly in focus, but I wanted to show this as usually these are very sleek individuals and to puff out the feathers in such manner really does say something about the temperature this weekend.