24 March 2023

Archive for March, 2023

Thick Spring Fog

Thursday, March 23rd, 2023
Pileated Woodpecker (female), Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 23 March 2023.
Pileated Woodpecker (female) on a foggy morn.

Was supposed to rain lightly today, but dog and I awoke to a foggy morning. And it remained foggy—a thick fog, a calm atmosphere—throughout our two-hour hike up the hill.

Didn’t expect much in the way of photos—and wasn’t sure of bird numbers, either—but was pleasantly surprised in both cases. Had thirteen species, and a few half-way-decent photos, a first-of-year kinglet, and a decent pic of a female Pileated Woodpecker.

Pretty sure we’re supposed to get a little sun tomorrow. Maybe we’ll even get another first-of-year bird.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 6:58 a.m. (7:58 stupid DST), I hiked all trails.

1. American Robin
2. American Crow*
3. Black-capped Chickadee**
4. Red-bellied Woodpecker (v)
5. Blue Jay (v)
6. Herring Gull* (v)
7. Eastern Bluebird
8. Pileated Woodpecker
9. Ruby-crowned Kinglet†
10. Tufted Titmouse (v)
11. White-breasted Nuthatch (v)
12. Red-breasted Nuthatch (v)
13. Red-winged Blackbird (v)

Elsewhere

14. European Starling (v)
15. Mallard
16. Rock Pigeon

Mammals

American Red Squirrel

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

†First-of-year

’Rumps

Wednesday, March 22nd, 2023
Yellow-rumped Warbler, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 22 March 2023.
Yellow-rumped Warbler.

This morning dawned hazy clear, with temps about freezing and hardly any wind. I expected some bluebirds maybe, but maybe not much else—and I was kinda wrong on both counts. For one thing, the number of species started rising quickly; for another, no bluebirds until we’d started back up over the hill.

Notable were junco, loon, and Red-shouldered Hawk, but most interesting was the number of yellow-rumps.

Yellow-rumped Warblers have been hanging around all winter. They seem to like to hang out with bluebirds. Today was no exception: returning over the summit, we encountered four bluebirds and four ’rumps. It’s fun for me to try to imagine how come these two species like to hang out together.

Otherwise, at home early, I heard (then spied) a gang of five redwings. Spring is most definitely here.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 7:12 a.m. (8:12 stupid DST), I hiked all trails.

1. American Goldfinch** (v)
2. American Robin**
3. Northern Cardinal** (v)
4. American Crow*
5. Black-capped Chickadee**
6. Herring Gull* (v)
7. Dark-eyed Junco (v)
8. Downy Woodpecker** (drumming)
9. White-breasted Nuthatch (v)
10. Hairy Woodpecker (v)
11. Common Loon
12. Brown Creeper (v)
13. Pileated Woodpecker (v)
14. Tufted Titmouse (v)
15. Blue Jay** (v)
16. Eastern Bluebird
17. Yellow-rumped Warbler
18. Red-shouldered Hawk
19. Red-breasted Nuthatch (v)

Elsewhere

20. Mallard
21. Red-winged Blackbird

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

†First-of-year

Spring Things

Tuesday, March 21st, 2023
American Robin in the woods, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 21 March 2023.
American Robin in the woods.

A mostly sunny morning, calm, about freezing. First full day of spring.

I kept my ear and eye out for spring things today as dog and I headed up the wooded trail. Singers included chickadees and titmice and cardinals and Brown Creepers. Fourteen species total on the hill—but the most noteworthy bird for me today was elsewhere.

In a residential area near Clam Cove after our hike, I happened to hear a singing Song Sparrow, a first of year for me. This sparrow is a favorite, evocative of spring generally, especially when it first returns from away.

Just listening to that sparrow’s song lifted my mood, affirmed my optimism, and improved my general outlook on the world—at least for this one day.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 6:48 a.m. (7:48 stupid DST), I hiked all trails.

1. American Goldfinch (v)
2. Tufted Titmouse** (v)
3. Northern Cardinal** (v)
4. American Crow*
5. Black-capped Chickadee**
6. Downy Woodpecker (drumming)
7. White-breasted Nuthatch
8. Brown Creeper
9. American Robin
10. Northern Flicker
11. Dark-eyed Junco
12. Yellow-rumped Warbler
13. Eastern Bluebird
14. Blue Jay

Elsewhere

15. Mourning Dove
16. Song Sparrow (v)†
17. Red-breasted Nuthatch (v)
18. Herring Gull

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

†First-of-year

 
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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