Sunday, April 5, 2015

Announcing: Spring!! And Fox Sparrows!

Checking it out...
What a tough winter! It's almost like I've been in a state of suspended animation, just trying to get through it and now, finally starting to come alive again. I haven't been at the park in such a long time... It was such a pleasure to head over there this morning. 32 degrees, clear and sunny.

As I headed into the lower gardens I could hear the toot toot of a blue jay nearby. A mourning dove was cooing. A group of Canada geese flew overhead. Robins foraged in the leaf litter and song sparrows were everywhere - on the ground, in trees, on the fences, flying here and there and of course singing. The tree swallows are back in full force. Every bird box at the park looks like it has been staked out by the tree swallows.

Fox Sparrow
I heard a beautiful song and wasn't sure who was singing it. As I stood in the sun, facing the golf course, I saw a sparrow-like bird in a shrub. As I honed in on it with my binoculars, I realized it was a fox sparrow. Very exciting! I got a little too close and it flew, but later I found it again closer to the path to the upper gardens. This is when I realized there were two of them! Of course there were juncos, cardinals and downy woodpeckers.

As I headed to the upper gardens, I passed chickadees, tufted titmice and more song sparrows. Tree swallows were here as well, guarding their new abodes. I had a nice view of an Eastern Phoebe sunning on a branch. I heard a red-wing blackbird as it flew off. There were several goldfinches in mid-molt and herring gulls flying by.

Red-bellied Woodpecker
I walked to the pond which is mostly still frozen hoping for wood ducks in what looked like a small watery patch, but no luck. The river was quiet save for a lone Canada goose heading upstream.

On my way back, I came across this beautiful Red-bellied woodpecker climbing up and down this tree trunk. It was very vocal and it's head was so brilliant in the sun.

I ran into Haynes as I was leaving and additionally, we saw a cowbird. Hopefully Haynes will add on to this if he saw birds not already reported.

1 comment:

  1. Running into Suzette at Nahanton Park this morning sure did make it feel like spring is just around the corner.

    I eventually did see two Fox Sparrows there at the lower garden; another was at the path along the soccer field; and there were FOUR more at the Nahanton St end of the upper field. Also, I flushed a Woodcock from the trees there at the lower garden.