20 September 2020

Posts Tagged ‘American crow’


Friday, September 18th, 2020
Black-chinned Hummingbird (imm./fem.), East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 18 September 2020.
Black-chinned Hummingbird (imm./fem.).

Got a whiff of smoke this morning on my hike with dog. A haze hovered over the basin. The fires in California are alarming, to say the least—as is the local drought. Thought we’d be getting some rain tomorrow, but apparently not. Going on two months without significant rain.

Perhaps that’s why things continue to be quiet up the foothills trails. Mostly the usual suspects this morning, bu also a couple of birds whose calls I didn’t recognize. One in particular—with a semi-harsh, semi-musical chip-note—flitted out of a juniper and showed itself to be warbler-sized with flashes of yellow. Tried to track it down but didn’t see it again. Another little chattery bird, too, I couldn’t sneak up on.

“Dips” in birding lingo usually mean you’ve heard of a rare or interesting sighting and go looking for it but fail to find it—i.e., you “dipped” on the bird. In my mind the same applies in the shorter term: you see or hear something curious but don’t end up getting a good look. Happens a lot.

But also, on occasion, you stumble onto a pretty great sighting without even trying. It all works out in the end, I suppose.

No smoky smell later in the day. I hope at least the West Coast gets a little rain.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:13 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. House Finch*
2. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
3. Pine Siskin
4. American Robin**
5. Black-chinned Hummingbird
6. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
7. Spotted Towhee
8. Northern Flicker**
9. Rock Pigeon*
10. Black-capped Chickadee
11. Wood-warbler (sp)
12. Lesser Goldfinch** (v)
13. Black-billed Magpie*
14. Red-tailed Hawk


15. European Starling
16. American Crow
17. Mourning Dove
18. Song Sparrow


Red Squirrel (v)

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

Midday Hike

Thursday, June 11th, 2020
Scrub jay vs gnatcatcher standoff, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 11 June 2020.
Scrub jay vs gnatcatcher standoff.

A lot happening this morning kept me and Jack from hiking until late morning today. It was bright and warm, but I brought water, and we had a pretty nice time of it—despite the fact that I didn’t manage any decent bird photos.

A good part of the time I spent in the shaded valley trail, where the Warbling Vireos live, trying to get a pic of one of three vireos I saw. Trouble is, they were bothered by the presence of a nearby scrub-jay, so they were all noise and flitty motion, and I couldn’t get a fix. At one point they were joined by a gnatcatcher—I’ve seen little gnatcatchers harassing jays a lot lately—but it didn’t stop and pose, either.

Still, as I say, it was a good ’un. You can kinda tell that summer’s only a week or so away.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 11:15 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Black-billed Magpie*
2. Song Sparrow* (v)
3. House Finch**
4. American Robin*
5. Lesser Goldfinch** (v)
6. Black-headed Grosbeak
7. Lazuli Bunting
8. Black-chinned Hummingbird
9. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
10. Black-capped Chickadee (v)
11. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
12. Spotted Towhee
13. Black-throated Gray Warbler (v)
14. Warbling Vireo
15. Chipping Sparrow
16. California Quail*
17. Orange-crowned Warbler (v)
18. Pine Siskin (v)


19. Mourning Dove
20. European Starling
21. Rock Pigeon
22. American Crow
23. House Sparrow
24. Barn Swallow
25. Cliff Swallow



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


Friday, May 29th, 2020
California Quail, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 29 May 2020.
California Quail.

Not long after I moved to SLC last summer, I met a little covey of neighbors: Quentin Quail†† and family. I’d never seen a California Quail before, and here were whole families of them, clicking and scrambling, sprinting across the roads, fluttering up onto rooftops and into trees.

Not until this spring, though, did I realize many of them moved up the slopes to have little quails. Nowadays dog and I encounter them all along the trails we hike each morning.

They’re a little skittish, a little talkative—but all in all pretty likable neighbors.

††Quentin Quail was a character in a Chuck Jones cartoon for Merry Melodies released in 1946.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 7:30 a.m., I hiked several hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Black-billed Magpie*
2. Lazuli Bunting
3. Song Sparrow** (v)
4. Black-chinned Hummingbird
5. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
6. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
7. Pine Siskin
8. California Quail*
9. Spotted Towhee
10. Black-capped Chickadee**
11. Black-headed Grosbeak
12. American Robin*
13. Lesser Goldfinch** (v)
14. Black-throated Gray Warbler (v)
15. MacGillivray’s Warbler (v)
16. Warbling Vireo
17. Chipping Sparrow (v)
18. House Finch
19. Turkey Vulture


20. Eurasian Collared Dove
21. European Starling
22. House Sparrow
23. Rock Pigeon
24. American Crow


Rock Squirrel

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

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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