24 June 2017 Rockport, Maine, USA 

Posts Tagged ‘European starling’

Birdsong in the Fog

Monday, June 5th, 2017
Savannah Sparrow, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 05 June 2017.

Savannah Sparrow.

Chestnut-sided Warbler, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 05 June 2017.

Chestnut-sided Warbler.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 8:30 a.m., I hiked all trails.

1. Chestnut-sided Warbler**
2. Ovenbird (v)
3. Red-eyed Vireo
4. Veery
5. American Goldfinch* (v)
6. Eastern Towhee
7. Black-capped Chickadee (v)
8. American Redstart**
9. Rose-breasted Grosbeak (v)
10. Gray Catbird
11. Yellow Warbler (v)
12. Mourning Dove*
13. Alder Flycatcher
14. Common Yellowthroat
15. Eastern Wood-pewee (v)
16. Song Sparrow
17. American Robin*
18. Tree Swallow
19. Field Sparrow
20. American Crow*
21. Savannah Sparrow
22. Northern Flicker
23. Blue Jay (v)
24. Eastern Phoebe*
25. Scarlet Tanager (v)

Elsewhere

26. Herring Gull
27. European Starling
28. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (drumming (near the town office))

v = Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

 

A Partly-Sunny Day

Saturday, June 3rd, 2017
American Goldfinch, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 03 June 2017.

American Goldfinch.

In the woods with dog this morning, I watched as a pair of chasing Ovenbirds zipped by no more than about a foot away.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 9 a.m., I hiked all trails.

1. Northern Cardinal* (v)
2. Chestnut-sided Warbler**
3. Common Yellowthroat
4. American Redstart** (v)
5. American Goldfinch
6. Eastern Towhee
7. Black-capped Chickadee
8. Black-throated Green Warbler (v)
9. Alder Flycatcher
10. Gray Catbird* (v)
11. Veery (v)
12. Pileated Woodpecker (v)
13. Purple Finch (v)
14. Yellow Warbler**
15. Tree Swallow
16. Song Sparrow
17. American Crow* (v)
18. Ruffed Grouse (booming)
19. Eastern Phoebe*
20. Field Sparrow (v)
21. Tufted Titmouse (v)
22. American Robin (v)
23. Chipping Sparrow* (v)
24. Red-eyed Vireo (v)
25. Black-billed Cuckoo (v)
26. Cedar Waxwing
27. Wood Thrush (v)
28. Red-eyed Vireo
29. Eastern Wood-pewee (v)

Elsewhere

30. Mourning Dove (v)
31. Canada Goose (v)
32. European Starling
33. Common Grackle
34. Herring Gull

v = Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

 

Bird Brains

Friday, June 2nd, 2017
Yellow Warbler, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 02 June 2017.

Yellow Warbler.

While walking in the woods today, listening to the songs of Eastern Wood-pewees, I got to thinking about bird brains.

If you haven’t heard a pewee sing, you’re missing out. The song is wistful, pensive, slow, intermittent, and takes a good while to complete. It begins with a slurred “Pee-oh-wee”—and the pause that follows makes you think, Simple enough. Then after ten or fifteen seconds, you hear a second “Pee-oh-wee!” just like the first. Well, that’s the song, you think. That’s the sum of it. But no. Although what follows another 10 or 15 seconds later is a third call like the first two, but after the third pause, you hear: “Peee-ohh!”

This bird has a lazy, languid, four-part song that lasts a good 40 or 45 seconds.

Somehow it keeps track. Something about this bird’s brain causes it to stretch out its delivery, to hint at false assurances before revealing a final surprise.

Ospreys building a nest atop the Rockland Fire Station, 02 June 2017.

Ospreys building a nest atop the Rockland Fire Station.

Every creature experiences life differently. Dogs smell the world as we cannot. Bats echolocate. Octopi are astonishingly intelligent but experience a wholly different reality. And birds have magnets in their heads—or GPS devices (or somesuch) that let them geolocate with impressive precision.

But it’s the songs of birds that most fascinate me, that make me think about their brains. Many (most?) sing more than one tune—like today’s Chestnut-sided Warblers, alternately singing Type 1 and Type 2 songs. The voices of Savannah Sparrows and Black-billed Cuckoos seem so soft and subtle and tenuous but cover impressively great distances.

Birdsong. So varied and complex. I wonder if the human brain is even capable of decoding the cipher.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 7:45 a.m., I hiked all trails.

1. Wild Turkey (v)
2. Red-eyed Vireo**
3. Ovenbird
4. Black-throated Green Warbler (v)
5. Chestnut-sided Warbler**
6. Common Yellowthroat (v)
7. Brown-headed Cowbird (v)
8. Northern Cardinal** (v)
9. Eastern Towhee
10. American Redstart (v)
11. Scarlet Tanager (v)
12. Pileated Woodpecker (drumming)
13. Blue Jay** (v)
14. Alder Flycatcher
15. Black-capped Chickadee
16. White-breasted Nuthatch (v)
17. Gray Catbird*
18. Song Sparrow
19. Yellow Warbler**
20. American Goldfinch (v)
21. Tree Swallow
22. Red-tailed Hawk
23. Eastern Phoebe*
24. Savannah Sparrow
25. Field Sparrow (v)
26. Chipping Sparrow* (v)
27. American Robin*
28. Hermit Thrush (v)
29. Eastern Wood-pewee

Elsewhere

30. House Finch (v)
31. Mourning Dove (v)
32. European Starling
33. Osprey

v = Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

 

 
Bird Report is an intermittent record of what's outside my window in Rockport, Maine, USA (44°08'N latitude, 69°06'W longitude), and vicinity. —Brian Willson



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