Thursday, April 30, 2015

April Review

Spotted Sandpipers, 4/30, Double Trouble SP
It was an eventful month. A lot of unusual and/or rare birds along with the seasonal arrivals. In all I added 44 species to my year list.

I was all over the state this month, even venturing as far north as Hunterdon County, where I've never birded, in order to finally add Neotropic Cormorant to my state list (thanks Mike!).

Shari & I snuck in a detour to Carteret to add Monk Parakeets, a very entertaining half hour. The highlight rarity though had to be last weekend's Bar-tailed Godwit at Brig. Talk about being at the right place at the right time! We saw the bird about a 1/2 hour after it was first reported, thanks to wonders of text alerts. How did people find rare birds calling up once a week to a hotline? The American White Pelican and 6 American Avocets also at Brig that weekend made it the place to bird at the end of April.

It seemed, as always, that it took migration a while to get started. I think everyone anticipates it so much that feel late when it really isn't. But the warblers are back and the last couple of days I've been actively seeking and finding them. Today, the last day of the month, I had the pleasure of stumbling upon an Ocean County Louisiana Waterthrush at Double Trouble. It was on the same spillway as the two picture Spotted Sandpipers, in fast-moving water, where one should be found. I'd already done well at Double Trouble this morning, hearing Hooded Warbler and seeing my first two Yellow Warblers (as opposed to hearing them last week), when I walked out to the park's big reservoir. I was thinking it was a low percentage hike since no waterfowl would be on the water, so seeing the two sandpipers was a treat. Then I saw another bird bobbing it's tail and it was no sandpiper--too small, stripes on it flanks, clear through...I had the elusive warbler, reinforcing my theory that  you will not find the bird until you have truly given up. Greg had this bird last week in a different spot and I figured it was long gone by today, so I had no expectations of finding it.

Our backyard has seen the return of a few of our favorites--a hen Wild Turkey makes a daily visit, at least one Ruby-throated Hummingbird is partaking of Shari's sugar water, and the Eastern Whip-poor-will is nightly (and early morning) feature of the season. There are actually a number of whip-poor-wills in the neighborhood and when 2 or 3 of them start sounding off it is quite amazing.

I got into "the city" twice this month and was able to finally see a Chuck-will's-widow, as well as add Black-and-white Warbler and Blue-headed Vireo (both in Central Park) to the year list.

In all I listed 154 species for the month, by far the most species this year. May, with a trip to Ohio, has a good chance of surpassing that number. I'll start trying early tomorrow morning. In the meantime, here's last month's list:
Counties birded:
New Jersey: Atlantic, Burlington, Cape May, Cumberland, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Mercer, Monmouth, Ocean
New York: New York
Species                     Location
Greater White-fronted Goose     Mercer Corporate Park
Brant     Brig
Canada Goose     Whitesbog
Mute Swan     Brig
Tundra Swan     Whitesbog
Wood Duck     Whitesbog
Gadwall     Brig
Eurasian Wigeon     Brig
American Wigeon     Brig
American Black Duck     Whitesbog
Mallard     Whitesbog
Blue-winged Teal     Brig
Northern Shoveler     Brig
Northern Pintail     Brig
Green-winged Teal     Whitesbog
Ring-necked Duck     Whitesbog
Greater Scaup     Great Bay Blvd
Bufflehead     Butterfly Bogs
Hooded Merganser     Whitesbog
Red-breasted Merganser     Brig
Ruddy Duck     Manasquan Reservoir IBA
Wild Turkey     White House
Red-throated Loon     Sunset Beach/Concrete Ship
Common Loon     Spruce Run Reservoir
Pied-billed Grebe     Brig
Horned Grebe     Manasquan Reservoir IBA
Northern Gannet     East Point Lighthouse
Neotropic Cormorant     Demott Pond
Double-crested Cormorant     Clinton
American White Pelican     Brig
American Bittern     Whitesbog
Great Blue Heron     Bunker Hill Bogs
Great Egret     Butterfly Bogs
Snowy Egret     Brig
Little Blue Heron     Island Beach SP
Tricolored Heron     Cattus Island County Park
Cattle Egret     Meadowedge Park
Glossy Ibis     Brig
Black Vulture     FREC
Turkey Vulture     Whitesbog
Osprey     Whitesbog
Northern Harrier     Whitesbog
Sharp-shinned Hawk     Colliers Mills WMA
Cooper's Hawk     Whitesbog
Bald Eagle     35 Sunset Rd
Red-shouldered Hawk     Spruce Run Reservoir
Broad-winged Hawk     Belleplain State Forest
Red-tailed Hawk     35 Sunset Rd
Clapper Rail     Heislerville WMA
American Avocet     Brig
American Oystercatcher     Great Bay Blvd
Black-bellied Plover     Great Bay Blvd
Semipalmated Plover     Heislerville WMA
Killdeer     Bunker Hill Bogs
Spotted Sandpiper     Colliers Mills WMA
Greater Yellowlegs     Brig
Willet     Great Bay Blvd
Lesser Yellowlegs     Heislerville WMA
Whimbrel     Brig
Bar-tailed Godwit     Brig
Sanderling     Norbury's Landing
Dunlin     Great Bay Blvd
Least Sandpiper     Brig
Semipalmated Sandpiper     Brig
Short-billed Dowitcher     Brig
Bonaparte's Gull     Manasquan Reservoir IBA
Laughing Gull     Brick
Ring-billed Gull     Spruce Run Reservoir
Herring Gull     Spruce Run Reservoir
Lesser Black-backed Gull     Spruce Run Reservoir
Glaucous Gull     Brig
Great Black-backed Gull     Cattus Island County Park
Caspian Tern     Brig
Forster's Tern     Great Bay Blvd
Rock Pigeon     Carteret
Mourning Dove     35 Sunset Rd
Chuck-will's-widow     Bryant Park
Eastern Whip-poor-will     35 Sunset Rd
Chimney Swift     Brig
Ruby-throated Hummingbird     35 Sunset Rd
Belted Kingfisher     Spruce Run Reservoir
Red-bellied Woodpecker     35 Sunset Rd
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker     Central Park
Downy Woodpecker     Whitesbog
Hairy Woodpecker     Double Trouble State Park
Northern Flicker     Whitesbog
American Kestrel     Whitesbog
Merlin     Brig
Peregrine Falcon     Brig
Monk Parakeet     Carteret
Eastern Phoebe     Whitesbog
Eastern Kingbird     Double Trouble State Park
White-eyed Vireo     Brig
Blue-headed Vireo     Central Park
Blue Jay     Double Trouble State Park
American Crow     Whitesbog
Fish Crow     Whitesbog
Common Raven     E. Colliers Mills Rd
Northern Rough-winged Swallow     Cattus Island County Park
Purple Martin     Brig
Tree Swallow     Whitesbog
Barn Swallow     Great Bay Blvd
Carolina Chickadee     Whitesbog
Black-capped Chickadee     Demott Pond
Tufted Titmouse     35 Sunset Rd
Red-breasted Nuthatch     35 Sunset Rd
White-breasted Nuthatch     Whitesbog
House Wren     Norbury's Landing
Carolina Wren     35 Sunset Rd
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher     Spruce Run Reservoir
Golden-crowned Kinglet     Whitesbog
Ruby-crowned Kinglet     Double Trouble State Park
Eastern Bluebird     Spruce Run Reservoir
Hermit Thrush     Cattus Island County Park
Wood Thrush     Belleplain State Forest
American Robin     Whitesbog
Gray Catbird     Brig
Brown Thrasher     Cox Hall Creek WMA
Northern Mockingbird     Whitesbog
European Starling     35 Sunset Rd
Ovenbird     Belleplain State Forest
Worm-eating Warbler     Evert Memorial Nature Trail
Louisiana Waterthrush     Belleplain State Forest
Black-and-white Warbler     Central Park
Prothonotary Warbler     Belleplain State Forest
Common Yellowthroat     Brig
Hooded Warbler    Evert Memorial Nature Trail
Yellow Warbler     Belleplain State Forest
Palm Warbler     Colliers Mills WMA
Pine Warbler     Whitesbog
Yellow-rumped Warbler     Whitesbog
Yellow-throated Warbler     Belleplain State Forest
Prairie Warbler     Heislerville WMA
Eastern Towhee     Double Trouble State Park
Chipping Sparrow     35 Sunset Rd
Field Sparrow     Brig
Savannah Sparrow     Cattus Island County Park
Fox Sparrow     Whitesbog
Song Sparrow     Whitesbog
Swamp Sparrow     Whitesbog
White-throated Sparrow     35 Sunset Rd
Dark-eyed Junco     Whitesbog
Northern Cardinal     Whitesbog
Red-winged Blackbird     Whitesbog
Rusty Blackbird     Whitesbog
Common Grackle     Whitesbog
Boat-tailed Grackle     Great Bay Blvd
Brown-headed Cowbird     35 Sunset Rd
House Finch     35 Sunset Rd
Purple Finch     35 Sunset Rd
Pine Siskin     35 Sunset Rd
American Goldfinch     35 Sunset Rd
House Sparrow     Clinton
Tree Swallow, Northern Rough-wing Swallow squabbling at Whitesbog

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Evert Memorial Trail 4/29--Worm-eating Warbler, Hooded Warbler

I wanted to practice my earbirding today, so I got up very early (with the help of the whip-poor-will) and drove to one of the most rugged spots around here, the Dot And Brooks Evert Memorial Nature Trail. It is a spot where it's very hard to see the birds, but you can hear them as you walk the narrow, muddy paths. I boned up last nighton a few warblers I know the spot is renowned for, donned my wellies, and by 6:30 this morning I was slipping and sliding on the boardwalk, where beavers have apparently been busy since my last visit about 11 months ago.

In the parking area I was greeted by the "cheffa cheffa cheffa" (that's how I hear it) of Ovenbirds and just after I negotiated this aquatic stretch
I heard my first Hooded Warbler of the year.  Hooded Warbler is a hard bird to see. It is also a beautiful bird to see and I would have liked see one of the four I heard today but despite the loudness and clarity of their song, none of them showed. I was also pleased to immediately identify the mechanical trill of a Worm-eating Warbler (whose name sounds like something Yosemite Sam would call Tweety Bird), but again, even though I felt one of the birds was close enough for me to reach into the brush and grab it, I couldn't find it. 

2/3 of the birds on my list today were by ear--some, like the crows and woodpeckers, aren't worth chasing down--while others, like the Wood Thrush, though I'm happy to hear and know the song, I'd still rather see. There is an aspect of earbirding that seems to me to border on being a parlor trick. Still, it was good practice and now that I feel like I've got the warblers and vireos under control it's on to the orioles and grosbeaks. 
Further along the trail, such as it is
24 species
Canada Goose  2     f/o
Mourning Dove  3
Red-bellied Woodpecker  3     Heard
Downy Woodpecker  1     Heard
Northern Flicker  2     Heard
White-eyed Vireo  4     Heard
Blue Jay  10
American Crow  1     Heard
Fish Crow  1     Heard
Carolina Chickadee  4     Heard
Tufted Titmouse  4     Heard
White-breasted Nuthatch  1     Heard
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  3
Wood Thrush  1     Heard
Ovenbird  15     Heard
Worm-eating Warbler  4     Heard
Black-and-white Warbler  6
Hooded Warbler  4     Heard
Pine Warbler  1
Eastern Towhee  2     Heard
White-throated Sparrow  17
Northern Cardinal  4
Red-winged Blackbird  1     Heard
Brown-headed Cowbird  1     Heard, water dripping song

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Brig 4/26--Bar-tailed Godwit, Least Sandpiper, Chimney Swift

Shari, Bob, and I were back at Brig at 8:45 this morning for the 2nd half of our birding weekend. We started off at the Gull Pond with some Blue-winged Teal, a Bald Eagle and, mixed in with the swallows, our FOY Chimney Swift.

Bar-tailed Godwit
Photos by Shari Zirlin
Once we were on the dikes, we quickly relocated the American Avocets and the American White Pelican, in more or less the same area they were in the day before. After everyone in the group got on them both species flew off--the avocets to the left, the pelican somwhere to the right. We took a long time going around the drive, sorting through flocks of shorebirds and coming up with most of the expected species. The upland
portion of the drive was essentially a bird-free zone but by the time we were at the picnic tables for lunch I had over 60 species for the day.

The 2nd trip around the drive is for birds missed on the first circuit. What we missed the first time around was a doozy. We were just about to stop for the relocated pelican when all our phones started buzzing with an alert. Shari, who was riding with Mike & Pete, phoned me and told me we were now going to chase. We drove up the drive, past the observation tower to the East Pool where a small group of birders had gathered with their scopes and there we had what seems to be an annual visitor to Brig: Bar-tailed Godwit, a very rare visitor from Europe.

Last year, around this time, Brig also hosted this species. I remember chasing it very well and not finding it because it was so cold and windy that I abandoned my plan to just sit where it had been reported and wait for it (or another birder with sharper eyes) to show up. It was seen that day by Pete, who was about 20 minutes behind me on the drive. Had I stayed put, I would have seen it.

Today there was no problem and we got long and satisfying looks at this shorebird. Not a lifer for us (we'd seen in it France on our honeymoon) but it was Bob's 3rd lifer of the weekend. Getting 3 life birds in your home state on a weekend, unless you're an absolute newbie, is pretty amazing. By the time we were packing up many more birders, alerted by text, email, phone, or just stopping to see what all the hoopla was about had gathered to look at the godwit.

Hooded Mergansers, hens
After that spectacular sighting there really wasn't much that could top it. We drove around at a steady pace.  Mike did stop to show Bob & me our FOY Least Sandpiper which we had missed on the first go-round. We also had such "rarities" as 4 hen Hooded Mergansers and 5 Ring-necked Ducks. Given the date, these birds are expected to be gone. Given the weather, perhaps not.

Totaling it all up, I had 96 species for the weekend with 12 year birds. If only the Mets could have won more than one game against the Yankees, it would have been a perfect weekend.

64 species
Canada Goose  25
Mute Swan  1
American Black Duck  10
Mallard  5
Blue-winged Teal  10
Northern Shoveler  20
Northern Pintail  2
Green-winged Teal  10
Ring-necked Duck  5     entrance/exit ponds. White spurs on side, ringed bills. 
Hooded Merganser  4     continuing birds, all hens, from north dike, in channel.
Red-throated Loon  1
Double-crested Cormorant  25
American White Pelican  1    
Great Blue Heron  1
Great Egret  25
Snowy Egret  30
Glossy Ibis  50
Turkey Vulture  7
Osprey  5
Bald Eagle  1
Red-tailed Hawk  1
American Avocet  6     Continuing birds, in SW Pool, rusty reds sides,  black blacks, up turned bills
American Oystercatcher  5


Black-bellied Plover  50
Greater Yellowlegs  100
Willet  10
Lesser Yellowlegs  5
Whimbrel  4
Bar-tailed Godwit  1    
Dunlin  300
Least Sandpiper  1
Semipalmated Sandpiper  3
Short-billed Dowitcher  30
Bonaparte's Gull  2
Ring-billed Gull  1
Herring Gull  50
Great Black-backed Gull  10
Caspian Tern  2
Forster's Tern  20
Chimney Swift  1
Red-bellied Woodpecker  1     Heard upland trail
Peregrine Falcon  2
American Crow  1
Fish Crow  7
Purple Martin  5
Tree Swallow  10
Barn Swallow  2
Carolina Chickadee  2     Heard, picnic tables
Carolina Wren  1     Heard, picnic tables
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  2     Heard, upland portion
Eastern Bluebird  1
American Robin  5
Common Yellowthroat  3     Heard
Pine Warbler  2     Heard
Eastern Towhee  2     Heard
Chipping Sparrow  3
Song Sparrow  1
White-throated Sparrow  1     Heard, picnic tables
Northern Cardinal  1     Picnic tables
Red-winged Blackbird  20
Common Grackle  1     Heard
Boat-tailed Grackle  1
Brown-headed Cowbird  2     Heard
House Finch  1     Heard, parking lot

Brig 4/25--American White Pelican, Semipalmated Sandpiper

Now the day went from good to great. While we were at Belleplain I had a text saying that two rare birds were still being seen. Even though we were going to Brig on Sunday, I wanted to get there on Saturday so that, if the birds did stay for the weekend, I wouldn't be so crazed to get to the rarities that I wasn't able to enjoy all the other birds there. Mike planned to drive there to, as did Hank, another leader on the trip. It is about an hour from the Delaware Bayshore to Brig and we all eventually gathered on the south dike. Bob spotted the American White Pelican right away--just about the biggest bird you're going to see in North America--and another birder had 6 gorgeous American Avocets in her scope, so we put both of those rarities away pretty quickly. Brig usually gets an avocet a year. I've seen as many as two there in one day. But six (there were counts as high as nine the previous couple of days) is very rare. Six constitutes a flock.

We also had a Semipalmated Sandpiper on the way to the target birds. I didn't realize that on Saturday semisands were flagged as rare on eBird, while today, they're just another bird.

Now that I knew we'd be able to relax on Sunday without angsting about the rarities, we went to a local Italian place in Galloway for an early dinner before our final stop of the day, which was up in Barnegat. We needed darkness for this bird anyway, so there was no rush.

We drove up the Parkway to Barnegat to Collinstown Road which is a forested area near the HQ for the Forsythe's Barnegat division. This is an area that is reliable for Chuck-will's-widow. Even though I had the bird in NY last week, I still wanted it for my OC & NJ lists and, it would be a lifer for Bob.

We arrived around 7:55 and waited for the last rays of daylight to vanish.  At 8:10 we heard...whip-poor-will! Whip-poor-wills aren't supposed to east of Rt 9. Then we heard...another whip-poor-will. Finally, at around 8:15 we heard the Chuck, though it wasn't as loud as the whips, it was still clear enough to list and count. Thus ended a spectacular day of birding, which was only a prelude to Sunday's big "wow."

The list for Brig is short because after the pelican and avocet we drove around the remaining 7 miles of the wildlife drive at a torrid 20mph.
24 species
Brant  100
Canada Goose  8
Mute Swan  3
American Black Duck  2
Double-crested Cormorant  7
American White Pelican  1     
Great Egret  10
Snowy Egret  13
Glossy Ibis  1
Osprey  3
American Avocet  6    Unmistakable.
American Oystercatcher  3
Greater Yellowlegs  3
Willet  2
Dunlin  100
Semipalmated Sandpiper  1     black legs, gray body.
Laughing Gull  1
Herring Gull  23
Great Black-backed Gull  1
Forster's Tern  2
Fish Crow  5
Tree Swallow  1
Barn Swallow  3
Red-winged Blackbird  2

Heislerville WMA 4/25--Clapper Rail, Semipalmated Plover

After lunch we headed over to Heislerville WMA, which is a sort of mini-Brig in Cumberland County. But while Brig's roads are wide and one-way, Heislerville's are narrow and two-way, which makes for some interesting maneuvering on the dikes.

Coming in we check the big rookery on an island of dead, guano-covered trees. It was mostly cormorants and egrets, though some in our group did see a lone Black-crowned Night-Heron. I was not in that number.

Before we went onto the dikes we stopped at the parking area and scoped the big pool. We found many Greater Yellowlegs, a Killdeer, and very distant and tiny in the scope, our first Semipalmated Plovers.

Then on to the dikes, where the most unusual bird we found we a Red-throated Loon. Last week, when I was there with Mike, he heard a Clapper Rail that I might also have heard, though I thought it a pretty weak signal, so I didn't count it. This time, while we were scanning the ducks and other waterfowl in the same pool as the loon, I heard the rail loud and long. I know that both these year birs are easy ones, but I like to get them on the list. I also know I will eventually see a Clapper Rail, striding across the mud like, as Bob pointed out last year, Groucho Marx. He has forever changed the image of the bird for me.

Our Heislerville list. We also made stops nearby at East Point Lighthouse and Thompson's Beach, but nothing new was noted.
32 species
Canada Goose  2
Mute Swan  8
Gadwall  20
American Black Duck  2
Northern Shoveler  15
Green-winged Teal  29
Bufflehead  1
Red-throated Loon  1
Double-crested Cormorant  50
Great Egret  25
Snowy Egret  5
Turkey Vulture  2
Osprey  2
Bald Eagle  1
Clapper Rail  1     Heard
Semipalmated Plover  4
Killdeer  2
Greater Yellowlegs  50
Lesser Yellowlegs
Ring-billed Gull  1
Herring Gull  20
Great Black-backed Gull  25
Forster's Tern  1
Fish Crow  5
Northern Rough-winged Swallow  2
Purple Martin  1
Tree Swallow  5
Barn Swallow  20
Red-winged Blackbird  2
Common Grackle  2
Boat-tailed Grackle  2
House Finch  1     Heard

Belleplain SF 4/25--Broad-winged Hawk, Wood Thrush, Louisiana Waterthrush, Prothonotary Warbler, Yellow Warbler

Wild Turkey hen, Belleplain SF
It was quite a weekend of birding for us, starting on a cold morning in Belleplain SF with a group led by Mike & Pete. This is supposed to the "warbler trip" to kick off the spring. And while there were warblers around, especially Ovenbirds of which I estimated a conservative 30 heard, a lot of the birding was done by ear. I was driving, usually 2nd or 3rd in line, so perforce I missed a few birds. I'd rather not ram Mike in the rear (his car, that is) in order to catch a glimpse of a warbler.

(The birding weekend officially kicked off for us on Friday night when our friend Bob who lives in North Jersey, came down to spend the weekend birding with us. While we were having dinner, the whip-poor-will began to sing, loudly, and Bob had his first of 3 life birds for the weekend. Pretty cool--I've certainly never gotten a life bird while eating a meal. We went outside with a flashlight, because the whip sounded like it was on top of us, and it was, high in our neighbor's weeping cherry tree. The light flushed it, so Bob got to see the elusive nighjar.)

My first year bird was an ear bird--Wood Thrush--though Shari & Bob did see it--it's that driving problem.  But if  you're going to have an ear bird at least its good to have one with such a beautiful song. Louisiana Waterthrush, down at the bridge, was also by ear--another distinctive song, though not particularly lilting.

The group walked the little path to the beaver dam and waited and waited for a bird to show up. Just as we were turning around, I spotted a warbler high in a pine tree which turned out to be our quarry--Prothonotary Warbler. I'd never seen one so high in a tree but at least we did see it pretty well.

My third warbler was also by ear. Mike stopped for a Yellow-throated Warbler (which I heard last week at Belleplain).I missed that bird (driving), but just before we stopped I heard the tell-tale song of the Yellow Warbler (sweet sweet I'm so sweet) though it took a moment for the memory gears to mesh before I could identify the song.

The other year bird was a Broad-winged Hawk, usually a fall bird, but what goes south must go north, and instead of being a speck in the sky of a hawkwatch, this one was down low so that the stripe on the tail and the breast and underwing were all clearly visible.

We stopped for lunch just around noon and at the feeders by the visitor's center we all saw a Pine Siskin, a winter bird that apparently sees, given the frosty conditions of late, no compelling reason to migrate.
36 species
Wild Turkey  1
Black Vulture  1
Turkey Vulture  2
Broad-winged Hawk  1
Red-tailed Hawk  1
Laughing Gull  10
Mourning Dove  8
Red-bellied Woodpecker  4
Downy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  1     Heard
White-eyed Vireo  3     Heard
Blue Jay  5
Tree Swallow  1
Carolina Chickadee  2
Tufted Titmouse  3
White-breasted Nuthatch  1     Heard
Carolina Wren  1     Heard
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  1
Ruby-crowned Kinglet  1
Wood Thrush  1     Heard
American Robin  5
Ovenbird  30     Heard
Louisiana Waterthrush  1     Heard
Black-and-white Warbler  2     Heard
Prothonotary Warbler  1

Yellow Warbler  1     Heard
Pine Warbler  5
Prairie Warbler  1
Eastern Towhee  2     Heard
Chipping Sparrow  10
Field Sparrow  1     Heard
White-throated Sparrow  5
Northern Cardinal  1
Brown-headed Cowbird  5
Pine Siskin  1
American Goldfinch  6

Friday, April 24, 2015

Colliers Mills WMA 4/24--Spotted Sandpiper

Spotted Sandpiper
I was planning on going to Island Beach SP again today until I woke up and saw that the temperature here was about 37 with a stiff breeze. The beach, I figured, was no place to be, so I headed inland to Colliers Mills, figuring that at least some of the time I'd be out of the wind while walking in the woods. It proved to be a good choice, even if, while walking along the berm and behind the shooting range it felt more like February than late April.

I was crossing the dam at the back of Turnmill Pond when I "spotted" a bird fly down into the mud. I followed and found a new arrival for Ocean County this year, a nicely field-marked Spotted Sandpiper, bobbing its way up the hill, into the grass and over to the pond.  Later, on Colliers Mills Lake, I found two more, one at the back and one at the parking area.

American Kestrel
Hardly any waterfowl around. I had to trudge, again, all the way back to the 2nd bog past the power line cut to find my Wood Ducks. Five warbler species, none of them new, though I'm surprised at how many beautifully garbed Yellow-rumped Warblers are still around. And while I was walking near the large, recently burnt field on Success Road, I checked the big dead tree where a kestrel often hangs out, but there was no bird in sight. Then, a few minutes later one came swooping around and landed briefly on a Restricted Area sign before it flew off. I suspect that one was a male but I couldn't get a decent enough look at color before it flew. About an hour later, coming back to the field from the opposite direction I saw a kestrel and this one, a female, stayed perched long enough for me to get a half-way decent picture. While it is fun to find birds where "they're not supposed to be," there is a satisfying sense of continuity when birds return regularly to the same area.

I spent 3 hours and 33 minutes walking around my usual route and managed 36 species in that time. They were:
Canada Goose  3
Wood Duck  2    
Mallard  3
Great Blue Heron  1
Black Vulture  3
Turkey Vulture  6
Sharp-shinned Hawk  2     One chasing the other
Spotted Sandpiper  3     
Mourning Dove  1
Red-bellied Woodpecker  2     Heard
Downy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  1
American Kestrel  1    
Eastern Phoebe  1     Heard, near parking area
Blue Jay  20
Tree Swallow  5
Carolina Chickadee  5
Tufted Titmouse  3
White-breasted Nuthatch  2     Heard
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  15
Eastern Bluebird  1
American Robin  30
Gray Catbird  1     Heard, Hawkin Road
Northern Mockingbird  1
European Starling  10
Black-and-white Warbler  1
Common Yellowthroat  2     Heard
Palm Warbler  6
Pine Warbler  8
Yellow-rumped Warbler  12
Eastern Towhee  3
Chipping Sparrow  15
White-throated Sparrow  1
Red-winged Blackbird  20
Common Grackle  1
Brown-headed Cowbird  16