Saturday, May 24, 2008

Big Day

Five and a half hours in Prospect Park this morning, starting at 6:40 am. A couple of the Grand Army Plaza farmers’ market vendors were setting up at that time, which I believe was the earliest I’ve ever gotten there before. I said hello to another crazed birder, who was waiting for some friends. My mitzvah for the day was to give her a map of Prospect Park; way back when they still had the good map, I got a pile of them. What a day! In order: rock pigeon, starling, house sparrow, American crow, American robin, American redstart, gray catbird, red-bellied woodpecker, mourning dove, Canada warbler, black-throated blue warbler, cedar waxwing, northern flicker, mallard, chimney swift, magnolia warbler, chestnut-sided warbler, brown-headed cowbird, ring-billed gull, Baltimore oriole, scarlet tanager, veery, hermit thrust, white-throated sparrow, ovenbird, eastern wood pewee, northern waterthrush. Then, around 9 am, I emerged from the brush to meet with M, who came from the Inner Borough, and C*, who biked in from Ditmas Park, at the Willink entrance on Flatbush and plunged back in for more: common grackle, barn swallow, Canada goose, black-crowned night heron, great egret, red-tailed hawk, green heron, black-capped chickadee, red-winged blackbird, mute swan, eastern kingbird, common yellow throat, blackpoll warbler, white-breasted nuthatch, black and white warbler. Also, two Baltimore oriole nests; one robin’s nest with hungry babies; plus fledgling sparrows, robins, and starlings. One rabbit, numerous chipmunks, many squirrels. Heap o’ turtles. Two species fish. I think I saw a first spring summer tanager: red head and a bit of red on the undertail. There were at least a half of dozen other birds I couldn’t ID. Sigh. And, running into the grapevine, I heard about a femaile blue grosbeak and a mourning warbler, neither of which I caught.

*C had several dozen bees inside her apartment waiting for her when she returned home last night. The window was cracked slightly while she was at work. Were they from a nearby swarm? Of course, she is sweet, so the worker chicas might just have wanted to hang out in her aura.


Gerry Gomez Pearlberg said...

Exhilarating birding report!
What did C* do about those bees? Sounds like it's definitely swarm season in the C of NY.

apt pupil said...

C here. By the time I got home there were only 20 or so bees. Two of them stung my kitty cat, and died on the spot. I opened the window a lot more for the rest to escape, but they hung about and finally just died on the sill. Picture of the buggers here:

Scroll down a few posts.

I also took video but haven't gotten it up on YouTube yet...