Monday, April 4, 2016

Feeder Birds 4/1 to 4/3

Sunday's 4/3/2016 snow brought good numbers of birds to our deck feeders and surrounding yard. Here are photos of some of the species present, a few notable missed photo ops were 2016 firsts of Chipping Sparrow and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.

Red Maple flowers on 4/1

This robin is taking a frigid "anal blast" of cold air.

Same bird as above in a more dignified pose.

Another lighter male, which often battles the previous for the territorial rights of the deck. 

A Blue Jay dropped in for a quick "grab and go"

Dark-eyed Juncos should remain for most of April.

The male 1/2 of a local pair, hopefully they'll nest close by.

White-breasted Nuthatch on our perching post.

This MODO looking for seed on the deck rail.
Tufted Titmouse working a seed

My 1st yard Northern Flicker was noted 4/1, first by its call then visually.
House Finch male

Blacked-capped Chickadee working a sunflower seed outside the kitchen window

a dorsal view of one of the several Downy Woodpeckers that frequent our deck.

a Hairy Woodpecker working the cage

Male Red-bellied Woodpecker, on the "sapsucker" tree (a basswood), the drillings are from previous years, though
a sapsucker did show up on sunday.

We had a nice assortment of American Goldfinches, this is a fun time of year to observe their transitioning into breeding plumage. Here are a few of 25-30 that showed during Sunday's snow.

Monday, March 14, 2016

High Ridge WMA (East side) 3/12/2016

The east side of High Ridge Wild Life Management Area is a section that I (shamefully) have not explored in over 25 years I have birded and walked this area, other than occasionally checking Whitmanville Reservoir from South Ashburnham Road. The trail, off Old Gardner Road, lead to a stream that cuts through a small ravine which I followed till I reached the RR Tracks just east of the East Gardner Road Marsh.

While the woods were pretty "dead" today, later in the season this area should be a good location to find nesting warblers such as; Ovenbird,  Louisiana Watherthrush,  Black-throated Green, Black-throated Blue, Blackburnian, and Magnolia Warblers. Other song birds I'd expect nesting would be Hermit Thrush, Winter wren, Red-breasted Nuthatch and Golden-crowned Kinglet and of course Red-eyed Vireo.
An attractive stream, good habitat for Louisiana Waterthrush

Old "tin wear" near an old cellar hole.

Another view of this quick moving stream.

A minnow with a wound/growth on its back.

Glacial erratic

Red-tailed Hawk, also a Red-shouldered Hawk was heard calling from high overhead.

An oncoming freight train, the tracks thorough the WMA are active, its always good to be aware.
Bush whacking from the rr tracks eventually lead me to a large beaver impoundment,  to the east. The spruce grove that surrounds the pond would appear to be good habitat from nesting Golden-crowned Kinglets, Magnolia Warbler and Red-breasted Nuthatches.
A nice Spruce Grove, near a large beaver pond just west of Whitmanville Res. 

Signs of beaver all along the shore line.

An open view of the pond, looking west,

A pair of Common Mergansers on Whitmanville Res.

The spill way from Whitmanville Res.
The bird list from this 4 1/2 mile meander through the woods:

Wood Duck.... 2
Mallard (Northern)...2
Common Merganser (North American)....2
Red-shouldered Hawk....1
Red-tailed Hawk....1
Downy Woodpecker (Eastern)....3
Pileated Woodpecker.....1
American Crow.....3
Common Raven.....2
Black-capped Chickadee.... 15
Tufted Titmouse.... 8
Red-breasted Nuthatch....5
White-breasted Nuthatch (Eastern)......6
Brown Creeper.....5
Golden-crowned Kinglet....3
American Robin....5
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored)....1
Northern Cardinal....2
House Finch....2