Sunday, October 13, 2019

Walks in the park

Saturday, Linda Ferraresso led a Brookline Bird Club walk at NP. It started under light rain, but this didn't keep the birds down. There were quite a few Swamp Sparrows

and other regulars, as well as an early Junco. Three Warbler species included this Black-throated Green.

I returned this morning. After a cloudless night with a full moon, I was hoping for a different mix. Perhaps there was. I found a Myrtle Warbler, a Lincoln's Sparrow, and this Palm Warbler

as well as usuals such as this Song Sparrow

But a nice surprise was a flyover Peregrine Falcon. In the meadow I spotted this mantis -- or should I say he spotted me! I think it's a European, not Chinese - you can just make out the black ring on the inside of the arms at the body.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Sparrows' return

A quick visit this afternoon revealed that the fall sparrows are finally appearing! White-throated Sparrow and Indigo Bunting have been around for a while and were present today. But a nice addition today was Lincoln's Sparrow, at least three of them. I got some decent shots:

A Common Raven croaked overhead:

and I encountered the House Sparrow with a very pink bill that Suzette had reported:

There were a lot of Common Green Darners, like this female:

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Quick visit!

I decided to take a quick trip to the park this morning. Arrived at 8:40 a.m. It was 55 degrees and cloudy.

The lower gardens had several catbirds, blue jays, a grackle, lots of robins, 3 or 4 mourning doves, song sparrows and their short tailed young! Cardinals, downies, at least three flickers and a Carolina wren that I had been hearing, but suddenly appeared right in front of me. I went to aim my camera and it was gone in a flash.

The upper gardens had similar fare. Sadly, the house sparrows have really taken hold over the last several years. I could hear a nuthatch and chickadees, but didn't see them. A common Yellow- throat female perched on a fence, but left in a hurry. I was surprised to see one house wren still there that I'm sure was a young one because of its short tail.

As I was leaving, the house sparrows had taken over a plot that was filled with tall grasses. They were having a field day with the seeds. As I stood and stared, I realized there was a stranger among them. Its body shape and size was different. It was a female indigo bunting. The first I have seen on my own. I hope some day to see the male in full blue plumage.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Lawrence's Warbler!

I got to the Park late this morning, 9:15 or so, and went to the lower garden. In the scrub near the bat house I saw a flash of yellow and black ... Kentucky Warbler?? I hung around and waited to see it again, and this is what popped out:

This is "Lawrence's Warbler," a cross between Golden-winged and Blue-winged Warbler. It's much less common than "Brewster's Warbler," which displays the dominant traits. Interestingly, Lawrence's Warbler has been reported twice earlier this summer in eastern Massachusetts: once on Plum Island, once in Cambridge. 

After that, I couldn't complain about these guys, in the upper garden:

There was also a Blue-winged Warbler there, but it did not consent to being photographed. Near the Nature Center I caught up with this Spreadwing:

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Late August fun

Beautiful morning at Nahanton Park, with quite a good variety of birds. An empidonax flycatcher at the lower garden fled before I could id or photo it, but this accommodating Yellow-bellied Flycatcher was in the upper garden margin. Also there I found a Great-crested Flycatcher and a Yellow-billed Cuckoo.

Lots of Baltimore Orioles, Catbirds, and Black-and-white Warblers around, a little flock of American Redstarts at the lower garden along with a Common Yellowthroat ... and, near Woodcock Field, this Chestnut-sided Warbler:

The pond held two Solitary Sandpipers

No sparrows other than Song, but 30 spp altogether!

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Looking for migrants...

Baby Catbird
I will combine by last Sunday and this Sunday's sightings.

Last week was 65 degrees and this week was 73 degrees, both days fairly sunny.

Last week the highlights were a red tail hawk and a blue gray gnatcatcher as well as a common yellowthroat.

This week, as I started in the lower gardens, it was very quiet. At first, I wasn't sure I would see anything.

Finally some song sparrows and goldfinches turned up. There was a lot of hubbub near the bird houses that have their backs to the golf course. Ian turned up and we couldn't see any movement at all, but it certainly sounded like a lot of babies just out of a nest. We decided it was most likely a brood of house wrens due to the nature of their chatter.

Common Yellow-throat young
I saw a common yellowthroat that appeared right in front of me. I think it was a young one and then at least 3 American Redstarts which were beautiful.

We had a hummer, a chipper, robins, cardinals and blue jays.

The upper gardens had several hummingbirds, goldfinches, flickers, barn swallows, baby house wrens and chipping sparrows. In the woods that take you down to the soccer field, we saw Eastern phoebe, White-breasted nuthatch and a male oriole.

Female Hummingbird
Down by the soccer field were some titmice and more redstarts, chickadees and Ian saw a warbling vireo.

A photographer that has been coming a lot recently has saw an indigo bunting last week and after Ian and I left, he came upon a pair of Cedar waxwings which we had missed.

So not much in the way of migrants, but they will be coming through soon!

Thursday, August 1, 2019

August movement

Beautiful morning at Nahanton Park, first time I've been there in a while. Right off, a pair of female Orchard Orioles surprised me, perched high in a tree near the lower garden. There were several Baltimore Orioles around too, quiet now so harder to find.

There were lots of dragonflies around, including this Blue Dasher...

and this male Common Whitethroat

There are still some Yellow Warblers around, and a lot of Common Yellowthroats

Also, several American Redstarts were singing but not visible, and Flickers are coming through in numbers. Some years Northern Mockingbirds don't show up here, but there was one today: