25 July 2021

Archive for October, 2020

Pishing

Saturday, October 31st, 2020
Spotted Towhee, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 31 October 2020.
Spotted Towhee.

Quiet hike this morning. Pleasant conditions—warmish, sun and shade, not much of a breeze—but not a lot of bird species. Did count a lot of towhees and juncos again. Pretty typical this time of year, it seems.

Had few photos by the end of it, so when I heard a couple towhees scratching in the leaves. did a little pishing*—and grabbed a portrait or two.

*Making a psh-psh-psh-psh! sound that resembles birds’ alarm calls. Not all species respond to this trick.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 9:08 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Dark-eyed Junco
2. House Finch**
3. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
4. Spotted Towhee
5. Northern Flicker
6. Black-capped Chickadee**
7. American Robin
8. Pine Siskin (v)
9. Downy Woodpecker

(v) Voice only
**Voice only elsewhere

Mammals

Red Squirrel (v)

Fun Day

Friday, October 30th, 2020
Spotted Towhee in a wild rose, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 30 October 2020.
Spotted Towhee in a wild rose.

Warmer by a little, still cloudless, still no breeze to speak of. Things started off slow—but got interesting pretty quick-like.

Long-tailed Weasel, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, UTah, 30 October 2020.
Long-tailed Weasel.

The old quarry hollow turned out to be crawling with towhees and juncos and jays and finches—also a cottontail and my first Utah Long-tailed Weasel. [Actually, not my first: The “red squirrel” I listed yesterday was in fact a weasel also—as I mused aloud to my GoPro at the time before deciding I had to be wrong. Now I see it. Will fix.]

Up in the junipers, I heard the Shook-shook-shook-shook! of a Steller’s Jay—and finally saw the bird as it zoomed down the hill and out of photo range.

Really dug this day.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 9:08 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Black-capped Chickadee
2. House Finch**
3. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay**
4. Dark-eyed Junco
5. Spotted Towhee
6. Lesser Goldfinch*
7. American Robin
8. Mourning Dove (v)
9. Steller’s Jay
10. Juniper Titmouse (v)
11. Black-billed Magpie*

Elsewhere

12. Rock Pigeon
13. Northern Flicker (v)
14. Song Sparrow

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

Mammals

Red Squirrel
Mountain Cottontail
Long-tailed Weasel

Sparrows

Thursday, October 29th, 2020
White-crowned Sparrow (youngster), East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 29 October 2020.
White-crowned Sparrow (youngster).

Three sparrows today. First (and most exciting) was a pair of young White-crowned Sparrows that popped up in a rose bush on my morning hike with dog—then flitted around a bit. I heard them first, and their thin notes took my breath away.

Song Sparrow, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 28 October 2020.
Song Sparrow.

Second were a few House Sparrows in town, where I ran a quick errand.

Third was the Song Sparrow in my yard (photo here from yesterday). It’s a year-rounder that seems to live in a thick mass of ivy.

Sparrows seem rarer here then in Maine, which makes me kind of appreciate them more.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 9:08 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Black-capped Chickadee
2. House Finch**
3. Black-billed Magpie*
4. Northern Flicker
5. Spotted Towhee**
6. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
7. Dark-eyed Junco
8. White-crowned Sparrow
9. Lesser Goldfinch**
10. American Robin**

Elsewhere

11. Rock Pigeon
12. European Starling
13. House Sparrow
14. Red-tailed Hawk
15. Song Sparrow (v)

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

Mammals

Long-tailed Weasel

 
Bird Report is a (sometimes intermittent) record of the birds I encounter while hiking, see while driving, or spy outside my window. —Brian Willson



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