Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa)
Species account #63 was the related Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) and often flocks one species copme with a few individuals of the other as fellow travellers. They are always on the move and hard to get the camera locked on but patience pays off. Like many birds passing through in migration these were attracted to the smalll waterfall in the garden.
Golden-crowned Kinglets are boldly marked with a black eyebrow stripe and flashy lemon-yellow crest. A good look can require some patience, as they spend much of their time high up in dense spruce or fir foliage. To find them, listen for their high, thin call notes and song. Though barely larger than a hummingbird, this frenetically active bird can survive –40 degree nights, sometimes huddling together for warmth. They breed in the far north and montane west and visit most of North America during winter.
Note – the golden crown is quite often hidden and only displayed on occasions so to distinguish these from the Ruby-crowned use other field marks for identification.