Ann and I got home from Brooklyn late last night so I was not up as early this morning as I had planned, but I figured, if the bird has been around for weeks, and it apparently was most regularly seen in the late-morning, I did not need to get there at sun-up. I had just finished breakfast when Sean called to say the bird had been refound a few blocks from its original location (Washington St. between Jane and Horatio) and that it had been heard calling and was definitely a Couch's Kingbird. I told Sean I would be hoping on the A subway train. (Sean said he had permission to temporarily abandon his family in New Jersey and race in for the bird.) On my way to the subway, I called a few friends to make sure they knew about the bird. John Walsh, hadn't heard but as I was going into the subway he checked his email and told me it had just been posted as being seen back at its original location on Washington St. The ride downtown was frustrating because of delays on the A train, but I finally made it to 14th Street and 8th Ave. Coming out of the station, I received a text from Sean that he had gotten in to the city, seen the bird, and was already headed back to New Jersey to rejoin his family. As I arrived at the corner of Jane and Washington I met other birders who told me the kingbird had flown off about five minutes earlier! This started a frustrating wait of over an hour watching for the bird with an ever increasing number of birders arriving all the time. Finally, the bird reappeared and for the next 45 minutes or so put on a fabulous performance hawking insects from the bare trees, mostly in the center of the block on the west side of Washington St. The bird then flew up to a taller perch closer to Horatio before disappearing onto the roof of 99 Jane St. At that point I called it quits andf headed for the office.
|Couch's Kingbird, New York City, December 26, 2014 © Joe DiCostanzo|