Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Oatka Creek Park • December 21

Oatka Creek Park, Monroe, US-NY
Dec 21, 2011 8:14 AM - 10:11 AM
Protocol: Traveling
5.0 mile(s)
Comments:     It was a rainy 41F early morning birding hike in Oatka today. The rain was continuous throughout the hike, though this seemed hardly an issue for the birds. Robins and chickadees were in abundance and found in pretty much every environment in the park. Titmice were very vocal and fairly well distributed about the park, too. White-throated Sparrows sang from time to time and the crows sounded like they were harassing something, though by the time I caught up with them the party was over. As I stepped onto Trout Run Trail, an American Mink ran across my path in front of me and at close range, too. I walked into the tall weeds by the creek to try and recover the mink and succeeded in getting another look before it disappeared for good. A bluebird called over Bluebird Trail and I found the general area of the source of the call in a wooded section along the southern edge of the western field. However, as this area is inaccessible by trail and the required bushwhacking through rain drenched goldenrod would have left me throughly soaked (if it were possible to be more wet at the time), I did not investigate further. Later as I was walking down the dirt road back to the parking lot, two bluebirds surprised me by flying up to the utilities lines by me and patiently posing for a picture. Unfortunately, I had secured my camera against the rain and it took quite a while, relatively speaking, to get it set up for a picture. As I finally was able to raise my lens, the bluebirds (were they smirking?) flew off. By the way, as supported by the Christmas Bird Count, it seems to be a good year for Oatka bluebirds as I believe there are about a dozen residents in the park at this time. Last year this time the number was barely six, though they persisted all winter and raised the first brood in the spring.

Oatka Creek at the end of Trout Run Trail

16 species

Canada Goose  50
Red-bellied Woodpecker  2
Downy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  3
Blue Jay  3
American Crow  7
Black-capped Chickadee  11
Tufted Titmouse  7
Golden-crowned Kinglet  2
Eastern Bluebird  3
American Robin  23
European Starling  30
White-throated Sparrow  6
Dark-eyed Junco  3
Northern Cardinal  3
American Goldfinch  1

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (