A gray morning. A chilly morning. The nip of fall—and that unique lovely muting of the fresh fall colors that only an overcast sky can achieve. Jack and I headed again to the open Beech Hill trail.
A quiet trail it proved to be. No trace of a bird until I heard the tseet! of a white-throat from somewhere. Then the telltale cheeps of chickadees somewhere in the middle distance. Then the chip of a yellow-rumped warbler. By the time we’d reached the summit, I’d seen and/or heard dozens of yellow-rumps—again, such an impressively abundant migrating passerine. I don’t see them this thick on the hill in spring. They come through early, a little wave of ’em, and then I might see a couple-three, tops, during the balance of the year.
My friend Kristen is sick of my photos of ‘rumps. But if they’re the only birds posing, well, hey.
Heard crows, heard jays. Song sparrows flitted about, uttered their full, round chip notes. We walked down over to the entrance to the wooded trails but no farther. Still, as happened yesterday, we ended up covered with tiny ticks, both Jack and I did. Maybe a dozen on my pants legs, maybe 15 on Jack’s furry ones. He’s got four, I’ve only got two.
Met my friend Sarah and her two dogs up top. We talked ticks, birds, music. Saw a flicker and an eastern phoebe, each in a trailside birch tree.
Only nine bird species on the hill today. But I so love fall. It was a fall-fragrant morning. Then, later, the forecast rain arrived: a steady, soaking rain, along with a high wind. And I can still hear the rush of the car tires out there, as the people move from one place to another. Me? I’m content to stay put, sit here in my warm rooms. Think about the thrilling fall day just past.
Beech Hill List
Beginning at 7:15 a.m., I hiked the open trail.
1. White-throated sparrow (voice)
2. Black-capped chickadee (voice)
3. Yellow-rumped warbler
4. American crow
5. Blue jay (voice)
6. Song sparrow
7. Downy woodpecker
8. Northern flicker
9. Eastern phoebe
10. Herring gull