Saturday, October 17, 2009

Brookline Bird Club Walk No. 2

Another unseasonably cold day. It was 41 degrees when I arrived at the park at 7:30 and only 45 degrees when I left at 9:30. No frost on the car though.

Before the group arrived, I heard some action down in the lower gardens. There was an area across from the gardens that was covered with white throated sparrows. They were very colorful and vocal. I love their little noises and songs and they were darting about and chasing each other. Very entertaining! Also, saw a small olivey bird with quite a yellow underside and what appeared to be sort of an eye ring and a little bit of streaking on its upper breast. It flicked it's tail constantly. Wasn't sure what it was. Upon meeting the group, Linda informed me that it was a palm warbler. I still get easily confused as we have seen several in the last few weeks, but somehow they all seem a little different!

Linda from the Brookline Bird Club led the walk today. We had people from Tewskbury, Watertown, Wellesley, Brookline and Newton. We spent quite a bit of time in the lower gardens as the sun was coming out. We ended up seeing quite a few palm warblers as well as some yellow rumps, but not nearly as many as last week. In fact, we're not seeing nearly as many warblers as last year around this time. Not sure if the weather is affecting this or what it is. We saw chickadees, cardinals, blue jays, song sparrows, a chipping sparrow, a ruby crowned kinglet (which was so restless that Linda said it reminded her of the snitch in Harry Potter!). At one point later in the morning, a tree in the lower gardens had about eight house finches in it - several males with their beautiful reddish purple breasts. Also saw goldfinches and heard the white breasted nuthatch. A sharp shinned hawk was spotted flying overhead as some crows chased it away and shortly after we saw a red-tailed hawk flying too.

The upper gardens was actually pretty quiet. Saw a savannah sparrow, some white throated sparrows and the song sparrows. Like last week, someone spotted cormorants flying over head only this time it was a whole crowd flying in formation.

We took a walk down to the soccer fields where we saw three phoebes and then down to the pond where there was a mallard couple. I had to leave as the group headed down to the river, so I'm not sure what else was seen.

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