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Friday, April 20, 2007

More about special birds in Prospect Park

I feel like I'm rushing through this posting, but I wanted to get my notes and photos up before the weekend. Tomorrow I'm doing another survey at the Ridgewood Reservoir and expect to have some interesting things to write about and photos to post. Once I start to get backed up, it's hard to do timely updates. I also have some Red-tailed Hawk images and info that I haven't had time to post. Whew...anyway:

I raced home this afternoon hoping to find the Sora and Yellow-throated Warbler in Prospect Park before sunset. I relocated the Sora at approximately 4pm, after waiting for all of about 60 seconds. It was feeding in the same location along the edge of the phragmites. It's hard to tell from the photos but Soras are compact, diminuative birds that blend well with their habitat. Most people in Prospect Park walked right passed the feeding bird (it was only a few yards from a sidewalk) and never noticed it.

Sora (click to enlarge)

(Photo credit - Rob Jett)

After I took several photos of the Sora I walked to Three Sisters Island to look for the reported Yellow-throated Warbler. That bird didn't appear quite as fast as the Sora. After about 30 minutes I spotted it on the northern most island. It worked its way south, into the phragmites, then across the path into a pair of magnolia trees. It fed on insects among the magnolia flowers unusually close to the ground. His brilliant yellow throat added an exclamation point to the field of pink blossoms against a vivid blue sky. When I left, at about 5:30pm it was still feeding in one of the magnolias.

Yellow-throated Warbler

(Photo credit - Rob Jett)

(Video credit - Cornell Lab of Ornithology Macaulay Library)

On my way home I stopped at the Lower Pool next to the Long Meadow. There were four Black-crowned Night-Herons and a single Great Blue Heron roosting in a large, downed tree at the water's edge. The great blue was looking a little tattered as he molted into breeding plumage. The night-herons were sleeping with their backs to the Long Meadow and, as the sun got closer to the horizon, they began to stir. On the foot path up to the Picnic House I spotted Ralph flying out of the Ravine woods. He perched in a huge oak tree for a moment, then took off flying into the woods on Payne Hill.

Great Blue Heron (click to enlarge)

(Photo credit - Rob Jett)

Black-crowned Night-Heron

(Photo credit - Rob Jett)

- - - - -

Prospect Park, 4/19/2007
Double-crested Cormorant
Great Blue Heron
Black-crowned Night-Heron
Ruddy Duck
Red-tailed Hawk
American Coot
Laughing Gull
Ring-billed Gull
Northern Flicker
Eastern Phoebe
Carolina Wren
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Yellow-throated Warbler
Pine Warbler
Palm Warbler
White-throated Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird

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

Backlit daffodil

(Photo credit - Rob Jett)


(Photo credit - Rob Jett)


Pamela said...

Look at the potential in that horse chestnut bud. How many leaves will it fulfill??

wonderful bird pictures. The Sora is a new breed to me. Beautiful feathers and markings.

I had a visit with a Swainson's Hawk near my house when walking on Thursday afternoon.

Mike said...

Outstanding photos, Rob!

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