Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Birds 81-90

Posted by Kirk
Bird 81 was an Egret on Easter. I spotted a bunch of Buffleheads during my commute to work on Tuesday, April 10th. I thought I caught a glimpse of a Northern Shoveler that same morning but it was just a glimpse at 55 mph so an official sighting will have to wait.

On Thursday April 12th I went on a hike with our intern Julia. We saw a winter wren down in the moat of the bog. We followed it around for a while. The ID would have been about 1000 times easier if it had bothered to sing. I next spotted a yellow-bellied sap sucker which was cool. It was on Red oak trail near the SE corner of the bog. It looked a lot like a hairy woodpecker at first but the white spot on the back of the head and the white stripe on the side really stood out. Julia said she noticed the white line running off the side of the head like a pileated. The yellow belly was barely noticeable. Another cool thing is that Julia saw sapsucker holes in the tree it landed on. My good binoculars were at home so I wasn't noticing those kind of details. She also had 10x binos while I had th 7x ones we give to the kids to use.

Almost immediately after seeing the woodpecker, Julia spotted a female eastern bluebird sitting on the bog. We watched it for a while as it hopped from hummock to hummock.

That's three new species for the year on one short hike around the bog, not too shabby!

On April 13th I had the day off from work so after picking up Doyle from the groomer we went to Little Lake Josephine in Roseville to go birding. We saw wood ducks, mallards, American coots, northern cardinals, robins, redhead ducks, lesser scaups, canada geese, ring necked ducks and a pair of osprey on a nesting platform. That's three new species for the year and my first official "life list" sighting of the ones in bold.

On April 14th we went to Crex Meadows for a work field trip and I added a Harrier and Trumpeter swan to the list. Overall I was a little disappointed in the trip. We were on this big bus and weren't able to stop too often to get off and really look for birds. It also wasn;t hte best time of year or time of the day but it was still fun.

On April 16th I came so close to getting bird number 90. I saw a swallow in the distance which was almost certainly a tree swallow but I couldn't be sure. I also heard the call of a tree sparrow but hearing isn't good enough, I need to see it!

On Tuesday, April 17th I went on a hike with Paul, Bekah and Julia out to the osprey tower at work. There weren't any osprey nesting but on the way I saw tree swallows. Number 90!

81 Great Egret
82 Bufflehead
83 Winter Wren
84 Yellow Bellied Sapsucker
85 Redhead Ducks
86 Lesser Scaup
87 Osprey
88 Harrier
89 Trumpeter Swan
90 Tree Swallow