Thursday, May 15, 2014

Central Park - May 15 - A bit soggy.

The forecast was for the rains to stop this morning and when I looked at the weather radar at 6:00 am it looked as if most of the rains had passed us and there was nothing else coming our way. This however, turned out not to be the case. On my way down to Central Park for my Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. bird walk the heavens opened. It let up a little when I arrived at the park. A couple of participants were waiting for me and even though it was raining we decided to head down to Hernshead to see if there were any birds around. More people arrived and eventually the Magnificent Seven (plus  myself) headed into the Ramble. We were rewarded with a let-up in the rains for the entire walk. There were not as many birds as in recent days, but it was surprisingly birdy. We had a total of 36 species with 10 warblers. A Northern Waterthrush was singing loudly from the stream by Triplets Bridge. We crossed the park drive from Balcony Bridge to see if we could spot it. It was obligingly in the middle of the stream. On the way into the Ramble, the trees over Oak Bridge at the Upper Lobe had a number of birds, including a Wilson's Warbler. Other highlights included a Lincoln's Sparrow on the Point. While we were on the Point, Chris Cooper told us about a singing Gray-cheeked Thrush on the Riviera. We headed over there to look for it, doing a detour around a Park vehicle cutting some tree branches and loudly turning them into wood chips. Not surprisingly the thrush was not singing, but Phil Jeffrey was photographing it on the path. Unfortunately only a few of us saw the thrush since it quickly disappeared into the thick ground cover. The full bird list follows.

Canada Goose
Double-crested Cormorant
Red-tailed Hawk
Herring Gull
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Eastern Kingbird
Warbling Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Blue Jay
Gray-cheeked Thrush - 1, Riviera (see above)
Swainson's Thrush
American Robin
Gray Catbird
European Starling
Ovenbird - still good numbers around; several seen
Northern Waterthrush - at least 3
Black-and-white Warbler - 4
Common Yellowthroat
American Redstart - females all over, a couple of males
Northern Parula - 1, Riviera
Magnolia Warbler - all over
Blackpoll Warbler - males seen all around the Ramble
Black-throated Blue Warbler - several females
Wilson's Warbler - 1, Oak Bridge
Lincoln's Sparrow - 1, the Point
Northern Cardinal
Rose-breasted Grosbeak - 1, heard at the east end of Turtle Pond
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Baltimore Oriole
House Sparrow

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