Saturday, May 15, 2021

A Good (Bird) Day

     On Friday, I had the day to myself so I made the most of it. Fully cleaned the parrot's cage, cleaned the whole first floor of the house, even took Kestrel on a bike ride after daycare, played at the park, and spent the entire morning birding. Like I could not have had a more perfect day, got some me time, got some mama-baby time, and I accomplished things. 

    I was hoping to see the Western grebe off of Coney Island Creek but had no luck, but the remainder of the day more than made up for it. I Visited Calvert Vaux Park and Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge and it was sunny, comfortable, and not yet too buggy - fantastic birding conditions. And the birds, they were spectacular!

What is it about birds that have bold blocks of color. They are just knockouts.
This red-headed woodpecker made up more than I could have asked for in missing the Grebe, at Calvert Vaux. I've seen red headed woodpeckers before, but never so close and never so handsome.
These birds show up loosely in our area one here and there. Their range is kinda funny, they definitely breed upstate and winter south of here, but this part of NY isn't really considered part of their regular range as it doesn't quite have the habitat they require.
Anyway. Really happy to see this bird.

While spying the woodpecker, a few warblers spied me, including this black and white- giving you a good look at those black and white under trail feathers- that only black and white warblers have, among warblers. 
There also were a decent abundance of indigo buntings singing in just the very small patch I was in, between Vaux and the Six-Diamonds Ballfields.

This black-throated blue warbler was doing it's buzzy "Beer-beer-beer-beer!" call and I waved goodbye as I thought about where to go next. I was looking at tides and considering Plumb, then didn't quite want to go at high tide (which was approaching at the time), then thought about Floyd and maybe the North 40, I ultimately decided on Jamaica Bay.

So Jamaica Bay was a really good choice. It was crawling with birders and also, therefore, birds. I overhead one birder reporting to another about the "loads of blackburnian's" in the wooded area and I spent most of my time in that part of the West Pond. 
A magnolia warbler was a sign of good things to come.

Breeding season makes birds that are normally skulky quite bold. Like this eastern towhee, so caught up in his own hormones, he can't help but jump up into the open and belt out in song.

So happy to see a gorgeous blackburnian warbler. Did I mention how I LOVE orange birds??
Blackburnian warblers, orioles, they set my heart afire.

And not to be dismissed, American redstarts are also flashy with that orange. This one was busy sitting still and singing.

They usually don't sit still, but those little bird breeding season hormones make you do some funny things.

Then a bird flew in not far above me. It was chunky, so I knew it wasn't a warbler. It was a very handsome rose-breasted grosbeak, making his squeaky sneaker sound.

This is the male, the females look absolutely different in brown, but they too are quite beautiful with a bold white eye brow and brown speckled, buff-colored belly.

No matter male or female, they always have that large beak, perfects for eating fruits and seeds, plus a few insects too.

So happy to see my favorite little warbler, Canada Warbler! So cute, round, and that perfect little necklace!

Walking a long the trail, you had to stop, constantly. Birds were everywhere, this one was calling loudly. When we looked at one another, I knew exactly who it was, a white-eyed vireo.

I think that they may be my favorite type of vireo. Those white eyes are just jaw-dropping.
After a while of walking this portion of the trail, the trees end and it opens up to the marsh grasses and shrubs. What I saw on the walk to that point was so good, I decided to double back, and glad I did, I saw additional birds and new species I didn't see on my walk in.

The Wildlife Refuge is perfect for cuckoos, the tent caterpillars they love live here in large numbers. This cuckoo flew in right where I was walking and gave some excellent looks at this very beautiful bird. I enjoy cuckoos for that elongated look and long tails, they are just so different from most of the other birds around. I enjoy them immensely.

I also enjoy immensely when they sit in the open for a good little while.

You could see it eyeing the branches for something worth its while, this tree had nothing to offer so it did eventually continue its search elsewhere.

I did take a short walk out to see who was on the pond, and got some views of my first of the year least terns, plus a clapper rail who crossed my path (literally ran across the path I was walking, I could have died at how much joy that brought me), but I also enjoyed this little moment.
Yellow warblers nest here and are quite plentiful, the the point that you can find them without binoculars.
And this little female was just out collecting some spider silk as she is likely beginning to nest and spider silk is just such a perfect material for your little nest.

Perhaps at this point, my mom hormones kicked in, because I just felt so much love for this little bird. I was so appreciative to share this little moment with her, watching her work hard to find the perfect materials to make her nest comfy for her future family. And damn, that just tugged on my heart strings.
It was perhaps partially the result of my craving some time to take the kiddo to the park and play on the playground and watch all the kids play and use the slides and ladders. Because by time I saw this, I decided it was time to go home, clean my nest, and get my baby bird for some fun time.

No comments:

Post a Comment