We pulled into an empty view point car park where a dozen White-crowned Sparrows and 2 Song Sparrows fed around the edge and a pair of Northern Flickers gave away a nearby nest site in a tall rotting tree stump. Killdeers were ever present running around the roads and a nearby wet field held 15+ Dunlin and a Spotted Sandpiper. 2 Double crested Cormorants flew over.
A birder driving past kindly stopped to give us a tip about a singing Henslow's Sparrow just along the road at Grimm Prairie, a large flat dead grassed area. As this was a main target for Bob we headed straight along and soon found our bird. It was a mere dot, singing the worlds most boring bird song ( google it) a long way off. A few hundred yards of stalking soon secured decent identifiable views of this quite rare species. Also new for me here was an Eastern Meadowlark, a female Northern Harrier or Marsh Hawk, 2 Horned Larks and 2 Buff bellied Pipits.
|Henslow's Sparrow twitch. Is over there somewhere.|
|Andy grilling some warbler or other..|
Warblers arrived on cue and a wide variety of guises. There were 6+ Magnolia Warblers ( what a bird), 6+ American Redstarts ( mostly black and red firey males), 4 Nashville Warblers, 3 Blackburnian Warblers, 8+ Chestnut sided Warblers, 3+ Northern Parulas, 5+ Bay breasted Warblers, 2 Palm Warblers, good numbers of Yellow Warblers and Yellow rumped Warblers down to arms length, 6+ Cape May Warblers, 1 male Black throated Blue Warbler, 4 Black throated Green Warblers, 3 Black and White Warblers, 1 Prairie Warbler ( a rare species here caused a twitch) and 1+ Orange crowned Warbler.
|Above two - Bay breasted Warblers.|
|Above two - Blackburnian Warbler, a male. A fire in the woods.|
|Above two - Cape May Warbler taking midges from cobwebs. Down to 6 feet.|
|Northern Parula female too close to focus, in danger of being stood on.|
|Chestnut sided Warbler, a common species here.|
|American Redstart, never sits still hard to photograph even though quite tame.|
|Magnolia Warbler, shade your eyes....|
What can you say about that! They are truly amazing birds and a real joy to hunt out. At some American migration spots these are canopy feeders but here many were at eye level. What a treat.
You think that cast looks good for 2 hours at one site, well its not over yet. As a support cast, this looks as impressive as it actually was - 2+ Ruby-crowned Kinglets, 1 male Ruby throated Hummingbird, 2 Blue headed Vireos, 3 Warbling Vireo, several Baltimore Orioles ( common), 6+ White crowned Sparrow, 1 Indigo Bunting, 5 Rose breasted Grosbeaks, 1 Lincoln Sparrow, 2 male Scarlet Tanager, 1 American White Pelican flew overhead, 3 House Wren ( more like a gropper than a wren), 1 Veery, 1 Swainsons Thrush, Andy found a fs male Summer Tanager that almsot landed on Richard as it flew to the ground to snatch an insect, 1 Eastern Bluebird and nearby several Purple Martins at speciall hung gourd nest boxes in a garden.
Phew! This is going to be a long post by the time I get the photos in here, please bear with me.
|Summer Tanager, not sure if FS male or reddish female?|