Saturday, December 3, 2011

Oatka Creek Park • December 3

Oatka Creek Park, Monroe, US-NY
Dec 3, 2011 8:00 AM - 10:10 AM
Protocol: Traveling
4.6 mile(s)
Comments:     It was a sunny and hazy 28F early morning birding hike in Oatka today. A thin layer of clouds covered the skies while a hard frost covered the landscape as I arrived in the parking lot. The sunlight was strong enough to cast soft shadows. The park was very quiet today with only the woodpeckers seeming to be unfazed by the cold. I once again heard a Pileated Woodpecker drumming as if it were spring, though BNA describes 'Demonstration Tapping' that has been heard 'near a roost trip during Sep--Nov in Maine'. Bears closer observation, I think! An Eastern Bluebird was heard in flight, though I don't know where their roost locations may be as the nesting boxes have been closed for the season. I found a single American Tree Sparrow; where are the flocks this year? Finally, I lost horribly a game of hide-and-seek with a Red-tailed Hawk. It seemed to be either the subject of some crow mobbing I heard earlier in my hike, or spooked by all the gunfire around the park from hunters. It was roosting, mostly concealed, and wary. As I carefully tried to get merely a partially concealed picture, it would change perches to remain more fully hidden. Finally, having little patience for the game, it left the area.

White-tailed Deer. This was a difficult morning for the deer as gunfire was erupting all around the park. I also saw one fatality, though not of human making. It looked like a coyote kill of a fawn. This fawn (not the one in the picture) had been in the area for a couple of days and seemed to have a broken leg, so perhaps it was for the best. As with similar episodes I've seen in the park in the past, in probably a couple of days the savagers will have the entire area policed and there will be not a trace left.

White-tailed Deer

American Red Squirrel. Once again, the characteristic gnawing sound led me directly to the squirrel.

American Red Squirrel

American Robin

18 species

Canada Goose  60
Red-tailed Hawk  1
Red-bellied Woodpecker  6
Downy Woodpecker  1
Hairy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  7
Pileated Woodpecker  2
Blue Jay  3
American Crow  16
Black-capped Chickadee  4
Tufted Titmouse  4
White-breasted Nuthatch  2
Eastern Bluebird  1
American Robin  6
American Tree Sparrow  1
White-throated Sparrow  4
Northern Cardinal  2
American Goldfinch  2

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (