An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

White-throated Sparrows and Winged Euonymus

10-17-13 white-throated sparrow 125Although the breeding and winter ranges of White-throated Sparrows overlap, most, if not all, populations are migratory. During their flight southward in the fall, White-throated Sparrows stop during the day to refuel on seeds, fruits and insects, if available. Winged Euonymus (Euonymus alatus), or Burning Bush, is an invasive shrub that, in addition to shading and crowding out native plants, produces vast quantities of capsules, each containing up to four seeds. White-throated Sparrows and many other bird species find these bright red seeds attractive, but unfortunately, they are of little nutritional value to the birds and other wildlife that feed on them. How ironic that these birds, whose health and migratory success may be compromised by the seeds of this invasive plant, are facilitating its establishment by dispersing its seeds.

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5 responses

  1. Argh! That is so frustrating!

    October 17, 2013 at 2:02 pm

  2. Roseanne Saalfield

    Mary, you go, girl! the more you can tell your blog subscribers to stay away from invasive species, the happier i am/ i am designing a landscape – as I think I mentioned, with help here and there from pam durrant – that’s all about native plants and wildlife attractors. we can continue, however, to blame nurseries and big box stores for selling this junk cheaply and consumers and developers who want plants that fill in fast, have shockingly strong fall color and are pest free (of course they are pest free for many reasons – not good ones – you are aware of and which have to do with their lack of value to native wildlife with whom they did not evolve) uck. makes me fume. and then to see the Bromfield high school landscaped not much more than 10 years ago with a whole wall full of this very plant, below, and with some of my gardening friends on the building committee giving the planting scheme the thumbs up

    now i’m good and riled … !

    (and we walked at the Oxbow the other day and saw the wooly aphid larvae you had just posted about. never seen this before. way cool)

    thanks as always roseanne

    October 17, 2013 at 2:10 pm

  3. Bob Bittenbender

    Thank you for this particular post. Invasive species have a huge negative impact on the health and welfare of birds and all other creatures including humans. This message needs to be broadcast far and wide.
    Thanks again

    October 17, 2013 at 2:18 pm

  4. Did u take this photo? It’s beautiful!!

    October 18, 2013 at 8:40 am

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