Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Van Courtlandt Bird Walk Report 10-22-2011...

On Saturday, our Van Courtlandt Park group met up at our usual spot, the nature center near the parade grounds. By the time I arrived, the group were already checking the parade ground fields and were looking at Savannah Sparrows (Passerculus sandwichensis). In the near vicinity on the museum grounds, we observed several Brown-headed Cowbirds (Certhia americana), European Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris), and Red-winged Blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus). After a few minutes working the birds on the museum grounds, we began working our way towards the John Kieran Trail that would take us alongside the lake. Along the way we picked up Brown Creeper, Blue-headed Vireo and both Ruby and Golden-crowned Kinglets. The Creeper and Vireo were life birds for most of the attendees, so there was a happy bunch of birders who headed back towards the restoration spot. Back at the restoration area, we picked up several sparrows, including our season first Chipping Sparrows (Spizella passerina); some of us had nice looks at Swamp Sparrows and more Savannah Sparrows. Several House Finches obliged by giving us extended looks as they fed on the ground. The restoration area also produced a Northern Parula (Setophaga americana), a couple of Golden-crowned Kinglets (Regulus calendula), Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata) and our best bird of the day in a Black-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus erythropthalmus). By the end of the walk, we managed 45 species; see below for a complete list.

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus)
Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)
Rock Pigeon (Columba livia)
Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)
Black-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus erythropthalmus)
Chimney Swift (Chaetura pelagica)
Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus)
Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens)
Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus)
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)
Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis phoebe)
Blue-headed Vireo (Vireo solitarius)
Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)
Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor)
Brown Creeper (Certhia americana)
Winter Wren (Troglodytes hiemalis)
Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa)
Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula)
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)
Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)
Northern Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos)
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)
Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)
Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas)
Northern Parula (Setophaga americana)
Blackpoll Warbler (Setophaga striata)
Palm Warbler (Setophaga palmarum)
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata)
Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina)
Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis)
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)
Swamp Sparrow (Melospiza georgiana)
White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis)
Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)
Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)
Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)
Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula)
Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)
House Finch (Carpodacus mexicanus)
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)
House Sparrow (Passer domesticus)

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