Saturday, April 23, 2016

Whitesbog 4/23--Barred Owl

Back from vacation more than a week and I still hadn't been to Whitesbog, so, since I felt like I needed a long walk this morning, I headed over there, arriving around 7:30. The morning was cool and damp; if I wanted to make it back to the Upper Reservoir with a chance of not getting wet, I knew I'd have to walk straight through the Burlington County section of the bogs, instead of investigating Ditch Meadows and the landing strip as I have been doing of late. Even walking fast through that section I had a few warblers and heard a lot of birds.

When I was in Ocean County, I slowed down a little. I was standing by one of the reservoirs, looking at a new Mallard family, when a couple of crow-sized birds flew overhead. One was a crow (Fish) while the other was a Green Heron trying to get away from the crow. Just then I heard, coming from the direction of Ft Dix, "Hoo Hoo Hoohoo!" I've never heard a Barred Owl at Whitesbog and I was especially pleased to be standing in Ocean County when it called.

I was again hoping for catbird. Again my hopes were dashed. I was also looking for Eastern Kingbird. There's usually a few by the Upper Reservoir--the like to perch atop the dead trees there--but I was informed by a friend there that I was a bit early for them. The food is there for them though--plenty of bugs flying around.

Still, a morning with an owl cannot be a disappointment.
31 species for my relatively straightforward walk around the bogs:
Canada Goose   2
Mallard   5
Green Heron   2
Turkey Vulture   1
Red-tailed Hawk   1
Barred Owl   1
Red-bellied Woodpecker   1
Northern Flicker   1
Eastern Phoebe   1
White-eyed Vireo   1
Blue Jay   1
Fish Crow   1
Tree Swallow   5
House Wren   1
Carolina Wren   1
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher   4
American Robin   5
Ovenbird   1
Black-and-white Warbler   1
Common Yellowthroat   2
Pine Warbler   1
Yellow-rumped Warbler   1
Prairie Warbler   1
Chipping Sparrow   5
White-throated Sparrow   1
Song Sparrow   4
Swamp Sparrow   3
Eastern Towhee   3
Red-winged Blackbird   25
Common Grackle   5
Brown-headed Cowbird   2

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