Monday, October 17, 2011

Van Courtlandt Bird Walk Report 10-15-2011...

Swamp Sparrow
Last Saturday, our Van Courtlandt Park group met up at our usual spot, the nature center near the parade grounds. We did our usual scan of the fields, and picked up several Savannah Sparrows (Passerculus sandwichensis) (perched on the fence) and in the field. There was not much else on the parade grounds and so we headed out to bird along the Van Courtlandt Lake. It was windy making birding very difficult as the birds stayed out of the wind and our views, but we plugged along working the trail looking for waterfowl on the lake. There was a fair number of Canada Geese on the lake, including about 5 Wood Ducks. We also saw a few Mallards, but little else. We tried Vault Hill, and picked up our first Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis phoebe) of the day; however,it was quiet up there as well, so we headed back to the nature center and birded the restoration area. The restoration area was a little out of the wind and it was here we picked up most of our day birds. Swamp Sparrows (Melospiza georgiana) were nice to look at along with a Northern Parula (Setophaga americana) and a couple of Golden-crowned Kinglets (Regulus calendula). Earlier we had seen a Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula), so we ended up getting both Kinglets for the day, a first for us at Van Courtlandt. Despite the tough conditions, we managed 37 species, see below for a complete list.

Total Birds: 37

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)
Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)
Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus)
Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)
Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii)
Ring-billed Gull (Larus delawarensis)
Herring Gull (Larus argentatus)
Rock Pigeon (Columba livia)
Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)
Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus)
Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens)
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)
Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis phoebe)
Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)
American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)
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)
Black-and-white Warbler (Mniotilta varia)
Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas)
Northern Parula (Setophaga americana)
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata)
Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis)
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)
Swamp Sparrow (Melospiza georgiana)
White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis)
Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)
Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)
House Finch (Carpodacus mexicanus)
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)
House Sparrow (Passer domesticus)

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