Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Oatka Creek Park • May 31

It was a sunny and breezy 93F late afternoon birding hike in Oatka today. The heat had most birds in deep hiding with vocalizations a fraction of what they have been. Oddly, this made hearing the individual songsters easier than normal which resulted in higher counts for species like Yellow Warbler. In the depths of the woods of Black Billed Cuckoo Trail a silent Pileated Woodpecker flew a couple feet off the ground and only about six feet in front of me as it crossed the trail. Its nearness coupled with the day's quiet let me clearly hear the wingbeats as it passed. As I left the woods and entered the fields I noticed that trails have been mowed for the first time this season. I use to think this suppressed bird activity along the trails for a day or so, but now I'm not so sure. Cedar Waxwings flew overhead above Warbler Loop as I wondered if they were ready to start establishing their territories in the park for their late summer nesting season, or if this was just a nomadic wandering. In the copse along Bluebird Trail I finally found had what would be my only photo-op of the day. It was of a panting Song Sparrow. It was a very interesting way to summarize today's outing!

Song Sparrow. If it were singing, its head would be cocked upwards. Instead, this bird was silent.

Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Location:     Oatka Creek Park
Observation date:     5/31/11
Number of species:     34

Turkey Vulture     1
Black-billed Cuckoo     1
Red-bellied Woodpecker     2
Pileated Woodpecker     1
Eastern Wood-Pewee     2
Alder Flycatcher     3
Warbling Vireo     2
Red-eyed Vireo     6
Blue Jay     1
American Crow     1
Tree Swallow     1
Black-capped Chickadee     1
House Wren     2
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher     1
Eastern Bluebird     1
Wood Thrush     2
American Robin     9
Gray Catbird     10
Cedar Waxwing     5
Blue-winged Warbler     4
Yellow Warbler     30
Ovenbird     1
Common Yellowthroat     5
Eastern Towhee     9
Chipping Sparrow     1
Field Sparrow     5
Song Sparrow     4
Scarlet Tanager     2
Northern Cardinal     10
Indigo Bunting     8
Red-winged Blackbird     5
Brown-headed Cowbird     2
Baltimore Oriole     5
American Goldfinch     8

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2(