In the morning, Nadir had to leave shortly after I got there to lead his weekly trip in Van Cortlandt Park, but James and I went into the park, up the Clove and along the ridge for a fabulous morning of birding. We had over 70 species of birds including 20 warblers. My last bird of the morning as I left the park at 11:00 AM was an adult Bald Eagle flying northeast over 218th Street. In the afternoon, I went back in for another three hours, some of which was spent in the rain from a thunderstorm. I did not mind getting wet, but I did think it wise to retreat from the ridge to the valley during the active part of the storm. When I cam down the Clove I met Nadir and James coming in. After the rain we went back up to the ridge, which was quieter than in the morning, but still with a good variety of birds around. I added a few more species to my day list, including a Canada Warbler, my 21st warbler of the day. On our way out across the soccer field after 7:00 PM, Nadir spotted a Common Nighthawk flying north for my 78th species of the day. Anders earlier told me of an Olive-sided Flycatcher and two Black-billed Cuckoos he had seen, bringing the total count for the park to at least 80 for the day. My total list follows, with a few notes follows.
Great Blue Heron -1, flyover
Great Egret - 1
Bald Eagle - see above
Greater Yellowlegs - 2, mudflats off soccer field in morning
Great Black-backed Gull
Common Nighthawk - see above (my first of the year)
Chimney Swift - finally back in some numbers
Great Crested Flycatcher - several on the ridge (my first of the year)
Yellow-throated Vireo - 1, on ridge in afternoon (my first of the year)
Blue-winged Warbler - 2
Nashville Warbler - 2
Bay-breasted Warbler - 1, on ridge north of pine groves (my first of the year)
Blackburnian Warbler - 2 or 3 males
Chestnut-sided Warbler - several
Blackpoll Warbler - 1 male on ridge (my first of the year)
Black-throated Blue Warbler
Palm Warbler - 1, getting late for this species
Prairie Warbler - at least two on ridge
Black-throated Green Warbler
Canada Warbler - 1
Wilson's Warbler -1
Grasshopper Sparrow - 1, see above (my first of the year - naturally)
Lincoln's Sparrow - 1, near meadow on ridge
Scarlet Tanager - all over the ridge, males and females
Indigo Bunting - male on the ridge
In the morning James and I came across a few flowers that hadn't been in bloom when I last got into the park last Sunday.
|Lily-of-the-valley © Joseph DiCostanzo
|Wild Geranium © Joseph DiCostanzo
We also came across a colony of Eastern Tent Caterpillars. If only there had been a cuckoo nearby to feed on them!
|Eastern Tent Caterpillars © Joseph DiCostanzo
As I finish this blog entry late Saturday night I see online that the winds are currently favorable for another flight tonight and the radar is indicating one is on. I have got to get some sleep so I can enjoy it in the morning!