Father’s Day Walk

June 20, 2010

8:00 AM

     I’m an optimistic person, except when I lead a bird walk. I always feel that I don’t want to drag folks out of bed early on a Sunday morning to see House Sparrows, a Rock Pigeon and a few Robins. So I usually do a preliminary walk during the week, to see if there are enough species around to make it worthwhile. It’s really silly, since I commit to the actual walk via email and webpage before I do the preliminary walk. I was especially pessimistic this morning. When I awoke, I heard very little birdsong through the window. It was already hot and my preliminary walk Friday was unproductive. I guess that’s what makes looking at birds fun. It’s quite unpredictable, I was pleasantly surprised.

     We began by walking over to Turtle Cove. On the way we spotted a Cedar Waxwing fairly low in a nearby tree. The bird posed for quite a while. We kept on walking and George spotted a bird very far out on a spit of land. Through my binoculars I was able to pull out a wing pattern and a long orange bill. The bird was foraging in the recognizable pattern of an American Oystercatcher. That was nice, since a few nesting Oystercatchers are around the area. Just as we turned to get to the Turtle Cove, a low flying Osprey, weighted down by a fairly large fish in its talons, flew across.

     We crossed the street to see several Great and Snowy Egrets, Killdeer, a Marsh Wren, a Mallard with some very cute ducklings, Baltimore Orioles, Barn Swallow,  Yellow Warblers, a Flicker or two, Downy Woodpecker and a Song Sparrow. In addition were the usual array of male and female Red-winged Blackbirds, Grackles, Mourning Doves, Blue Jays, Robins, Cowbirds and the like.

     By 10 AM it was already getting hot so we headed back and drove home by 10:30. I thought this was a good show for a mere 2.5 hours. Father’s Day was just beginning.

    

Left to right: Celia, George, Andrea and Pete. We were standing on the berm at Turtle Cove watching a mallard with her ducklings.

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