Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Oatka Creek Park • April 30

It was a sunny and 64F mid afternoon birding hike in Oatka today. The weather was so nice it seemed most birds took a pass on the mid afternoon snooze and stayed outside and singing the whole time I was there. My first pleasant surprises upon entering the woods were the song of a Yellow-throated Vireo and the calls of a Great Crested Flycatcher, both first-of-the-season sightings for Oatka. Both calls were loud, close by, and persistent. Catbirds continue to increase their numbers and today was a huge day for towhees. The highlight of the walk was along Bluebird Trail where I saw something I'd never seen before: perching Tree Swallows engaged in courtship rituals. It was quite fascinating to get excellent views of stationary and nearby tree swallows that weren't zooming at high speeds and making hairpin turns in the sky. The interaction between the courting swallows was rather sweet. :-) Further down the trail I froze when I heard a bee-buzz-buzz-buzz call that dropped in pitch: a Golden-winged Warbler! Earlier in the hike I had talked with one of the local dog walkers who was telling me that he had started birding Oatka back in the mid 80's and at that time there were many Golden-winged Warblers with all the hybrids, such as Brewster's Warbler. However, they have all but gone from the park these days. Today's Golden-winged call was persistent, though the bird was inaccessible from the trail. Next time I hope to be lucky enough to get a photographic or video record.


Northern Cardinal


Yellow Warbler


Large-flower Trillium


Common Blue Violet


Fig Buttercup


Eastern Towhee


Tree Swallow


Tree Swallow


Tree Swallow


Tree Swallow


Tree Swallow


Tree Swallows


Tree Swallows


Tree Swallows


Tree Swallow


Eastern Bluebird


Tree Swallow


Eastern Towhee


Gray Catbird


Location:     Oatka Creek Park
Observation date:     4/30/11
Notes:      
Number of species:     27


Red-tailed Hawk     1
Red-bellied Woodpecker     1
Downy Woodpecker     1
Northern Flicker     2
Pileated Woodpecker     1
Great Crested Flycatcher     1
Yellow-throated Vireo     1
Blue Jay     4
American Crow     3
Tree Swallow     3
Black-capped Chickadee     7
Tufted Titmouse     2
Ruby-crowned Kinglet     1
Eastern Bluebird     1
American Robin     2
Gray Catbird     3
Brown Thrasher     3
Golden-winged Warbler     1
Yellow Warbler     3
Eastern Towhee     8
Field Sparrow     2
Song Sparrow     4
White-throated Sparrow     4
Northern Cardinal     8
Red-winged Blackbird     4
Brown-headed Cowbird     4
American Goldfinch     6


This report was generated automatically by eBird v2(http://ebird.org)