Sunday, May 23, 2010

Weekend Update

The weather this weekend was beautiful both days. It was in the 50's, sunny Saturday and slightly overcast Sunday, but very pleasant.

The meadow has several wildflowers blooming right now. Grasses, red clover, ox eye daisies, lupine, some yellow hawkweedish flowers and some kind of wildflower with little purple flowers. I should research this to positively identify them.

Between Saturday and Sunday, in the lower gardens I saw many yellow warblers, house wrens, catbirds, robins, tree swallows, song sparrows. Somehow I have missed many of the migrants. Saturday, there was an Eastern kingbird hanging around. I think I saw "Little Hitler" the killer house sparrow that we wish would move elsewhere. The good news is that so far (and I am keeping my fingers crossed), the baby song sparrow is still in its ground nest and alive. I am wondering if this is the first brood ever for these song sparrows.

I'm also happy to report that the bluebird couple have been seen both days and today I saw him near the parking lot, which last year was one of their favorite spots to look for food to feed their babies. I also saw Mr. B fly to the box and feed the babies. I hope they make it.

In the upper gardens I caught a good glimpse of a warbling vireo singing. Also saw the great crested flycatcher being very vocal. It seems that the grosbeaks have abandoned the nest down near the soccer field, but I did have a great sighting of both of them in the upper gardens (pictured above).  Finally saw the red bellied woodpecker! Also saw a couple of gray shrews chasing each other like little brothers in the leaves near the edge of the woods.

Down near the soccer field, the orioles must be sitting on eggs in their cozy nest. I have seen the male hanging out in the tree a few times.

At the pond, one can hear a chorus of bull frogs glugging to each other. I haven't seen one yet, but they are so funny sounding and I did hear one plop in the water when I got too close. A female mallard was parading around with her brood of 6 or so babies and hanging out by the side to nibble on yummy stuff by the edge of the pond. Today, a turtle was sunning itself on a branch there. And this chipmunk was hanging out posing for a photo. Yes, you are very handsome!

Down by the river are lots of warbling vireos, titmice, orioles, warblers and chickadees. I saw a baby robin chasing its parent in the underbrush, begging for food. It was so cute. Also saw a pair of Canadian geese with 3 babies. I wonder if it's the pair I photographed this spring…As I walked along the river, I came across this tree. It sure looks like beaver damage, but I don't know if we have beavers in this part of the Charles. No sign of any beaver dams. Strange.

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