Friday, April 10, 2015

Colliers Mills WMA 4/10--Palm Warbler

Today was another in a seemingly endless succession of cold, wet, raw spring days. I went out anyway. Colliers Mills was my destination. I figured with its variety of habitats I'd have to find something new. Walking along Hawkin Road I finally did--my first Palm Warbler of the year, pumping its tail to beat the band. Above it was my first county Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher, plus a lingering Yellow-rumped Warbler was on a twig and a Pine Warbler was behind me, making for my first three warbler day of the year.

The problem with Colliers Mills is that it is so big with so many potential areas that might have interesting birds that no matter where I am, I think I should be somewhere else. I walked around Turnmill Pond, where some winter ducks are still floating around, found one Killdeer behind the shooting range and a flock of Northern Flickers flying out of the burnt stubble up to a bare tree then made my way up to and past the power line cut. I wanted Wood Ducks. Sometimes they are on the north end of Colliers Mills Lake but not today and often I find them on a bog about an 1/8 of a mile past the cut but again, not today. I decided to try the next abandoned bog and yes, there were three there. I also came across another Palm Warbler and a nice flock of Pine Warblers. Before I left for the day I spent a few minutes pishing around the parking lot and came up with another Blue-gray, plus White-throated, Chipping,  Field, and Song Sparrow. I was pretty satisfied with 35 species in the damp and overcast.
Canada Goose  13
Wood Duck  3     
Mallard  2     Colliers Mills lake
Ring-necked Duck  9     Seven on Turnmill Pond, two on back bog
Bufflehead  4     Turnmill Pond
Hooded Merganser  1     Turnmill Pond
Great Blue Heron  1
Killdeer  1
Mourning Dove  4
Red-bellied Woodpecker  3     Heard
Downy Woodpecker  1
Hairy Woodpecker  2
Northern Flicker  7
Blue Jay  10
American Crow  2     Heard
Fish Crow  1
Carolina Chickadee  4
Tufted Titmouse  2     Heard
White-breasted Nuthatch  3
Carolina Wren  1     Heard
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  2
Eastern Bluebird  1     Singing
American Robin  20
European Starling  3
Palm Warbler  2
Pine Warbler  10
Yellow-rumped Warbler  2     One on Hawkins road, male near parking lot
Chipping Sparrow  5
Field Sparrow  1
Song Sparrow  3
White-throated Sparrow  1
Dark-eyed Junco  2
Northern Cardinal  2     Near parking lot
Red-winged Blackbird  25
Brown-headed Cowbird  10

Coming home I checked the thistle feeder in the backyard which has been getting quite a few goldfinches in various molts along with a few Pine Siskins, very late in the season for us. They've been here for the last three days which is a record streak for our backyard. Too bad they arrived the week after Feederwatch ended.

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