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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

What a difference a day makes

This morning was strictly about birding. I still carried my camera with me (just in case) but I planned to concentrate on finding birds. Sitting on my roof last night, watching birds moving north, motivated me to run out to the park this morning. Shane and Sean had the same idea. I didn’t expect that a huge number of birds moved in, but there should be a noticeable change.

Let me give you an idea of what a difference a day could make during migration. Yesterday, Monday, local birders recorded 42 species of birds in Prospect Park. Today there were 86. Ten of those birds were seen for the first time this spring. Other species have only been seen sporadically, but it seemed like they were all here this morning. Since Sunday I’ve added 11 new species to my year list.

-Click here for the two day comparison-

The park still hasn’t arrived at the stage where songbirds are heard from every shrub and tree. We’re getting close.

It appeared that one of the Green Herons seen today was checking out potential nest sites along the Lullwater.

Another interesting observation was of a kestrel flying over the Long Meadow clutching some form of prey. Looking through our bins we could clearly identify a Yellow-rumped Warbler dangling from the predator’s razor-sharp talons. It’s was sad and amusing at the same time. Yellow-rumped Warblers are currently abundant in the park. At this time of year birders frequently get tired of seeing them while searching for other songbirds. It’s sort of like, “Hey, there’s something in that tree! Forget it, it’s just another yellow-rump”. So you see where this is headed. “Hey kestrel, take all the Yellow-rumped Warblers you want, just leave the Hooded Warblers alone.”

Hooded Warbler (Wilsonia citrina)

(Photo credit - Steve Nanz)

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Prospect Park, 4/25/2006
Double-crested Cormorant (2, Prospect Lake.)
Green Heron (3 or 4.)
Black-crowned Night-Heron
Ring-necked Duck (1.)
Turkey Vulture (1.)
Osprey (1.)
Sharp-shinned Hawk (1.)
Red-tailed Hawk (1.)
American Kestrel (1, flying with Yellow-rumped Warbler prey.)
Solitary Sandpiper (Lullwater.)
Spotted Sandpiper (Peninsula.)
Laughing Gull
Chimney Swift
Belted Kingfisher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Northern Flicker
Eastern Phoebe
White-eyed Vireo (2, Peninsula.)
Warbling Vireo (2.)
Northern Rough-winged Swallow (1.)
Barn Swallow
House Wren
Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Common.)
Veery (1, Sullivan Hill.)
Hermit Thrush (Common.)
Wood Thrush (4.)
Gray Catbird (3.)
Northern Mockingbird
Northern Parula (1.)
Yellow Warbler (2.)
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Common.)
Black-throated Green Warbler (1.)
Pine Warbler (1.)
Palm Warbler (Fairly common.)
Worm-eating Warbler (1, Midwood.)
Hooded Warbler (1, Sullivan Hill.)
Eastern Towhee (Fairly common.)
Chipping Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow (2.)
White-throated Sparrow
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird
House Finch
American Goldfinch (Fairly common.)

Other common species seen (or heard):
Canada Goose, Mute Swan, Mallard, Herring Gull, Rock Pigeon, Mourning Dove, Downy Woodpecker, Blue Jay, American Crow, Black-capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, American Robin, European Starling, Northern Cardinal, Song Sparrow, Red-winged Blackbird, House Sparrow

1 comment:

John Cambridge said...

Fan-tas-tic shots! Keep up the good work!!

John Cambridge

Exploring urban nature, birds, birdwatching, birding, hummingbirds, butterflies, dragonflies, bees, hawks, raptors, wildflowers, trees, mushrooms, environment, binoculars, spotting scope