Hi Delta,
Numerous reports of the colorful, active, and vocal Red-Breasted Nuthatch have been received by the Center and birding community across the Mississippi coast over the past few weeks. Considered to be a rare visitor to the coast, present annually in small numbers, the influx of larger numbers of birds like this usually means that something has changed across their range, that in the case of Red-Breasted Nuthatch includes the northern U.S. and southern Canada.
Ned Boyajian, a local bird expert and member of the Mississippi Bird Record Committee that track records for the state, reports that this incursion is due to a massive conifer cone failure throughout the boreal forests where this species is a year-round resident. In years of short food supply as this one, these birds make their way further south and join others that do migrate to warmer parts of their range.
You can help Audubon record the extent of this phenomenon by providing us with basic information about any sightings of Red-Breasted Nuthatch. Our primary survey area is the six coastal counties of Pearl River, Stone. George, Hancock, Harrison, and Jackson. For any sightings please provide us with the following details:

  • -Date(s) observed
  • -Number of birds
  • -Habitat in which they are seen (woods, open field, yards)
  • -Foraging observation, if possible (that is, what are they feeding on besides seeds from your   feeder)
Send your observations via email to Ned Boyajian at

For more indentification help with the Red-Breated Nuthatch go to:


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Pascagoula River Audubon Center
7001 Frank Griffin Road
Moss Point, Mississippi 39563

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