Actually, they have been here all winter but in smaller-than-usual usual numbers. Now they are a common sight for birders who recognize their flight pattern, silhouette, and sounds. Cedar waxwings are nomadic birds, always on the move searching for winter fruits. Cedar berries are a favorite food. The large flocks can strip a large cedar or row of cedars of their berries in a couple of days. It is an impressive sight to see a large flock swoop into a food source, hovering while picking the berries off the tree. Once the food supply is exhausted, they move on. If cedar berries are in short supply, they are also fond of wax myrtle, poison ivy, Virginia creeper, hackberry, and persistent fruits of some cherries
Cedar waxwings are not feeder birds. If you want to attract them to your yard you will need to plant berry-producing plants trees and shrubs. But what really attracts them is a water source. Whole flocks will readily come to a dependable water supply, especially in cold weather. They will swarm onto the water just like they will with a food source.
Waxwings are favorites of both casual and experienced birders. We locate them by their high pitched, thin shree call; quite distinctive once you learn it. They give it while perched or when flying over. Waxwings never seem to have a feather out of place. The combination crest, black mask, yellow-tipped tail, and sleek brown-gray plumage makes even the most experienced birders pause to admire them when they offer a good look.