Friday, September 21, 2012

Orchard Hill and Honeypot...another Cape May Warbler and many other highlights.

Cape May Warbler, Orchard Hill UMASS Amherst, Sept 21, 2012

Cape May Warbler, Orchard Hill UMASS Amherst, Sept 21, 2012

Cape May Warbler, Orchard Hill UMASS Amherst, Sept 21, 2012
I birded this morning at Orchard Hill with Ian Davies and part of the time with Keenan Yakola and his girlfriend.  With the early cloud cover the birds did not show as well as past mornings.  Despite the slow start we finished our time there with a flurry of activity including another Cape May Warbler.  It has been a great fall for this species as well as others that typically can be tough to find (ie Tennessee and Connecticut Warbler).  Many highlights from our early morning here before Ian and I headed to the Honeypot to spend the next three hours.  The lists from the day say it all and here is the one from Orchard Hill.

UMass Amherst--Orchard Hill

Rock Pigeon 1
Mourning Dove 2
Eastern Screech-Owl 1 responded to imitation
Ruby-throated Hummingbird 1 may have been a second bird, mimimum of one
Red-bellied Woodpecker 2
Downy Woodpecker 4
Hairy Woodpecker 2
Northern Flicker 1
Eastern Wood-Pewee 1
Eastern Phoebe 6
Blue-headed Vireo 4
Red-eyed Vireo 7
Blue Jay 8
American Crow 3
Common Raven 1
Black-capped Chickadee 7
Tufted Titmouse 5
Red-breasted Nuthatch 1
White-breasted Nuthatch 2
Carolina Wren 3
Eastern Bluebird 9
Swainson's Thrush 2
Hermit Thrush 1 seen pre dawn
Wood Thrush 3 'bup' call pre dawn
American Robin 28
Gray Catbird 23
European Starling 2
Cedar Waxwing 11
Common Yellowthroat 5
American Redstart 6
Cape May Warbler 1 Seen in large mixed species flock, Photographed
Northern Parula 10 slight reduction from previous day but still many around
Magnolia Warbler 1
Yellow Warbler 2 late, two seen in widely different areas
Chestnut-sided Warbler 5
Blackpoll Warbler 19 minimum, likely more
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) 1
Black-throated Green Warbler 2
warbler sp. 32 Many blackpoll like calls
Song Sparrow 5
Swamp Sparrow 1
White-throated Sparrow 5
Scarlet Tanager 1
Northern Cardinal 4
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 3
Red-winged Blackbird 5
Baltimore Oriole 2
Purple Finch 1 flyover
House Finch 9
American Goldfinch 4

Swamp Sparrow, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

Northern Harrier, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

Northern Harrier, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

Northern Harriers, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

Field Sparrow, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

American Pipit, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

American Pipit, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

Cliff Swallow flying away, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

Yellow Warbler (one of four), Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012

American Goldfinch,  Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Sept 21, 2012
At the honeypot the good birds continued.  I can go on and on but I will let the eBird list tell the story.

Honey Pot

Canada Goose 8
Mallard 7
Great Blue Heron 1
Turkey Vulture 2
Osprey 1 flying south following the river
Northern Harrier 3
Cooper's Hawk 2
Bald Eagle 1 SY bird
Red-tailed Hawk 4
Spotted Sandpiper 1
Ring-billed Gull 2
Rock Pigeon 15
Mourning Dove 3
Belted Kingfisher 2
Red-bellied Woodpecker 2
Downy Woodpecker 2
Hairy Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 6
Pileated Woodpecker 1 singing
American Kestrel 1
Eastern Phoebe 1 singing
Red-eyed Vireo 3
Blue Jay 114 **high count. Streaming over heading west all morning, likely many many more than this - I wouldn't be surprised if four-digit counts were possible with a skyward vigil.
American Crow 260 **high count. Large flocks in multiple fields feeding on discarded crops and other foodstuffs.
Cliff Swallow 3 *rare, late, high count. Three birds passed over That's A Plenty Farm heading east soon after we got there, and then were seen heading west overhead an hour later or so. Compact swallows with rusty uppertail coverts, dusky throats, and short relatively rounded wings and squared tails.
Black-capped Chickadee 2
Tufted Titmouse 1
White-breasted Nuthatch 1
House Wren 2
Carolina Wren 1
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 1
Eastern Bluebird 6
Swainson's Thrush 1 seen along river's edge about 70 feet up a tree
American Robin 12
Gray Catbird 3
European Starling 15
American Pipit 82 **high count. Two large flocks of these in fields along the main dirt road, one of at least 45, one of 30+, and then a few singles and small groups elsewhere. Many of these were perching on telephone wires - a behavior I have never before seen in this species!
Cedar Waxwing 25
Black-and-white Warbler 1
Common Yellowthroat 12
American Redstart 1
Northern Parula 1
Yellow Warbler 4 *late. One at That's A Plenty Farm, and the rest in weedy fields just north of the turn in the dirt road.
Palm Warbler 8
Palm Warbler (Western) 8
Palm Warbler (Yellow) 9 *high count. Very surprising to me to see this many Yellow Palms, outnumbering Westerns for the individuals that were seen! Two locations had groups of three of these associating closely with each other, others throughout. A couple birds photographed.
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) 3
warbler sp. 3 two zeep calls and one upsweep, the latter either Tennessee or Nashville.
Chipping Sparrow 9 near entrance to That's A Plenty Farm
Field Sparrow 3 That's A Plenty Farm
Vesper Sparrow 8 **high count. At one point I had three Vespers in view, and could hear two singing! Two birds were singing near some rows of planted trees just south of the dirt road, birds were also seen on the ground in the same area, along with two flyovers at That's A Plenty Farm and two on powerlines.
Savannah Sparrow 61 *high count. Likely many more, always tough to get a handle on true numbers of these
Song Sparrow 41 *high count. Likely many more, always tough to get a handle on true numbers of these
Lincoln's Sparrow 5 *high count. Three at That's A Plenty Farm, two in fields north of turn in dirt road.
Swamp Sparrow 6
Northern Cardinal 2
Indigo Bunting 6
bunting sp. 1 One Indigo Bunting/Blue Grosbeak seen quickly in flight a couple times, never at rest. Looked very dark in flight, with much blue evident, and seemingly deep rich brown overall. However, it looked smaller than would be expected for BLGR, and was never seen well enough to be sure. Much time was spent trying to coax it out of the weeds where it was calling from, unfortunately it only flight called and never gave a chip note. For what it is worth, the flight call was detectably lower than the Indigo Buntings calling nearby.
Dickcissel 2 *rare, high count. Both at That's A Plenty Farm. One flyby watched land in corn stalks, heard calling once. Another bird silently flew over low, picked up coming over the treeline from the north, coming over the river. We watched this individual as it flew over the whole field complex and kept going south over the river on the other side.
Bobolink 1
Red-winged Blackbird 1
Purple Finch 3
House Finch 4
American Goldfinch 105 *high count. This count could possibly be half again higher, the numbers feeding on sunflowers at That's A Plenty Farm are astounding. Harriers put the flocks up a couple times, and in the swirling it was tough to get a handle on how many were there.
House Sparrow 4

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