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Thursday, June 29, 2017

Sunday in the Cemetery

Sunday's walk didn't reveal anything out of the ordinary, but we did spot one unexpected lingering songbird.

I began the walk by heading straight over to the Red-tailed Hawk nest in "The Flats". Young red-tails grow at an incredible rate and I was curious to see how much more of their adult plumage had come it. From the open field below the nest tree we could see one of the youngsters standing upright at the edge of the nest. The head of its sibling could be barely seen as it sat down at the back of the nest. I scanned the surrounding trees for the parents, but couldn't find them. I guess the kids are large enough now that they can be left alone in the nest while they both hunt. One did make a brief appearance as we were leaving, circling over Cypress Avenue while making reassuring calls.

As we walked down Dale Avenue towards the Crescent Water I heard a familiar, and surprising, song coming from the top of one of the crabapple trees edging the pond. It was the rising trill of a Northern Parula. These colorful neotropic songbirds pass through the area is fairly good numbers during the spring migration on their way to their northern breeding grounds. They are uncommon nesters in New York State and, to my knowledge, do not nest in New York City. My best guess would be this summering individual is a procrastinator with no chance of finding a mate this year.

Another lonely bird that I keep coming across is an Eastern Phoebe in the vicinity of Oak and Landscape Avenues. I've been seeing and hearing him along a stretch of Copper Beeches for at least three weeks. Eastern Phoebes do occasionally nest in Green-Wood Cemetery and the adjacent Prospect Park, but in this guy's case, he would first need to find a partner. During my walks over the past month I've only managed to come across this single individual. Kind of sad hearing his pleading call every time I'm in the area.


Location: Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn
Date: Sunday, June 25, 2017 6:00am - 8:30am
Species: 33

Canada Goose
Great Blue Heron (3.)
Great Egret (1.)
Green Heron (1.)
Red-tailed Hawk (3. One adult flying near nest. Two nestlings in nest.)
Laughing Gull
Herring Gull
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Chimney Swift
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Monk Parakeet
Eastern Phoebe (1. Singing in Copper Beech next to William Poole.)
Great Crested Flycatcher (1.)
Eastern Kingbird
Warbling Vireo
Blue Jay
Common Raven (Heard only “croaking” in Flats near Vine Avenue.)
House Wren
American Robin
Gray Catbird
Northern Mockingbird
European Starling
Cedar Waxwing
Northern Parula (1. Heard singing next to Crescent Water, then seen perched at top of small crabapple tree.)
Chipping Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Baltimore Oriole
House Finch
House Sparrow

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