The Northern Shrike is one of the birds we see in the wintertime. They “fly south” from their breeding grounds in the boreal forests and forest-tundra borders of northern Canada and Alaska. Northern Shrike (Lanius excubitor) is considered a predatory songbird. The are 9 to 9.5 inches, just a bit smaller than a Blue Jay.
The Latin genus name is Lanius, meaning Butcher and they are AKA the “Butcher Bird” because they store their kill by impaling it on things like thorns and barbed wire fences. Wandering into its cache area can be a bit alarming if you are not aware of the birds odd but efficient ways.
~Photos by Tim Baerwald