Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing
(Bombycilla garrulus)

Order:  Passeriformes
Family:  Bombycillidae

Photo by David Restivo, NPS

Bohemian Waxwing Information

Length:  7.5 - 8.5"

Breeding Habitat: Usually, open coniferous forests; sometimes, opened mixed woodlands.

Winter Habitat: Any habitat with an abundance of berries or fruit trees, including residential areas, parks, and gardens.

Diet:  Insects, especially flying insects; berries and other fruits; favors fruits of mountain ash, cedar, and juniper. In spring, will also feed on tree sap.

  Calls of the Bohemian Waxwing

Additional Information

Bohemian Waxwing
Description, behavior, habitat, diet, nesting and migration of this bird. Includes photos and range map. (From BirdWeb)

Bohemian Waxwing

Bohemian Waxwing

© Mike Danzenbaker

Bohemian Waxwing
Identification Tips

  • Short, thin bill
  • Pale brown crest
  • Black eye patch and chin
  • Brown forehead
  • Pale brown head fading into pale gray belly
  • Brown undertail coverts
  • Dark gray back
  • Black wings with white, yellow and red bars
  • Black tail with yellow tip
  • Juveniles have much duller head and body with blurry streaks on underparts
  • Frequently found in large flocks feeding on fruit

Similar Species

The Bohemian Waxwing is similar to the Cedar Waxwing but has dark undertail coverts, gray belly and white and yellow markings in the wing.

(Credit: U. S. Geological Survey)

Breeding Bird Survey Map,

Bohemian Waxwing Breeding Map

(Image credit: USGS)

Range in New England

In New England, the Bohemian Waxwing winters regularly in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont. This bird is an irregular and rare winter visitor in Massachusetts. It is not found in Connecticut or Rhode Island except as a very rare winter vagrant.

Christmas Bird Count Map
Historical CBC Map from USGS