Sunday's for the Birds: Today's Bird is the White-Winged Crossbill

Every bird guidebook map I checked showed the white-winged crossbill's range reaching into Southern Canada, but rarely into Washington state. But birds can't read maps and one showed up at my feeder yesterday. 

Last week I got bored watching dark-eyed juncos battle one another at my feeder over wild bird seed. Hoping to attract a few goldfinches, I bought two feeders and filled one with black sunflower seeds and the other with a suet cake. Although the goldfinches have yet to make an appearance, I did attract a downy woodpecker, a black-headed grosbeak,  red-breasted nuthatches, pine siskins, chestnut-backed chickadees, black-capped chickadees, a spotted towhee, house finches, and what was unmistakeably a white-winged crossbill.

White-winged crossbill

This rosy colored bird looks similar to a purple finch, a house finch, and a red crossbill, but the distinctive two white wing-bars was the telltale sign that this bird was most definitely the white-winged crossbill. 

This rare find was not only added to my annual bird journal, but to my life list!