Monday, August 03, 2009

Sunday hike with the birds

No run on Sunday since I put in 15 miles on Saturday. Instead I went for another Sunday morning hike up at Elm Creek. And it was a gorgeous morning with many birds.

One of the best lessons I have ever learned about birdwatching is to find a good spot, hang out, and just observe. If you are constantly moving, you are covering ground; but you are probably missing a lot of things, too. Birds are usually on the move in search of food, so chances are if you stay put, they will drift in and out of your area.

I saw black-capped chicakdees, American robins, gray catbirds, an American redstart, cedar waxwings, yellow warblers, common yellowthroats, red-eyed vireos, downy woodpeckers, hairy woodpeckers (one was a juvenile following mom around!), a rather loquacious mourning dove who sat near me and cooed constantly, American goldfinches, house finches, a least flycatcher, a great-crested flycatcher, chipping sparrows, a house wren, eastern phoebes, tree swallows, and cardinals. These 20 birds were the result of standing in a single location on the trail over the course of an hour.

Elsewhere in the park, I also encountered a pileated woodpecker, ring-billed gulls, Canada geese, crows, song sparrows, and an eastern kingbird. It was a good Sunday in the woods.

Blue sky and wispy clouds on Sunday morning



Bineweed flower in a swampy area along the trail



A rather social downy woodpecker hanging out near me



Another shot of downy



Until next time,

Jean
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