While I thought that this was an exceptional year for seeing many of these spectacular birds - especially the Scarlet Tanagers - I've learned that these sightings actually highlight very dire news about the habitats through which they're traversing.
Normally, Tanagers are very rarely seen, but the last three years have seen weather conditions that have prevented the seeding out of the tallest deciduous hardwood trees, such as oaks and hemlocks. Tanagers, Grosbeaks and others that typically live 50-70 feet above the ground in the canopies of these trees have been forced to find food lower to the ground.
In this case, keeping these birds well fed gives them a chance of making it to their summer breeding grounds far north from here.
All images © Dan Pollack Photography. All rights reserved.