My final weekly walk of the year yielded 23 species of birds plus one noteworthy species of mammal!
Neither the cold morning nor the construction wrap-up seemed to hamper bird activity on the trail. The pipeline work has been complete, and although there were no folks, there are construction materials that are staged for removal. Please leave those items be, and please be sure to keep the hay that was laid down on the trail to help the grass regrow later this spring.
I was surprised to hear and see a flyover Pileated Woodpecker over the gas line cut. I first heard it then observed it flying fast, high, and parallel to the gas line cut. The bird sang the rest of the morning that I was there, but it was perched somewhere off campus. All told, it was a pretty good morning for woodpeckers with a total of three species!
Songbirds were quite numerous with the majority of activity at the gas line cut, which is unusual for the trail. I was surprised to see so much action there especially after all the disturbance from the construction. Perhaps the construction disturbed the land in a favorable way for the birds! I observed a very loud-singing Carolina Wren, lots of White-throated Sparrows, Song Sparrows, Northern Cardinals, and I heard a White-breasted Nuthatch.
The real highlight of the morning was when I first arrived at the trailhead to start the walk. One of our resident Red Foxes was sulking along the trailhead. Didn't take long for him or her to see me, and it bolted off real quick once it did (but not until I picked up a few captures!)
Happy holidays and new years to all the nature-loving folks out there!
Bethel Springs E.S.--Nature Trail Dec 21, 2017 7:21 AM Traveling 0.50 miles 31 Minutes All birds reported? Yes Comments: Walked from parking lot to gas line cut and back. First walk since they completed construction on the pipeline, and the trail is entirely covered in hay. Cold morning with a spectacular sunrise and temps in the low 30s. Submitted from eBird for iOS, version 1.6.1 Build 25 22 Canada Goose 3 Mourning Dove 1 Red-bellied Woodpecker 4 Downy Woodpecker 1 Pileated Woodpecker -- Calling while flying over the gas line cut 1 Blue Jay 3 American Crow 1 Fish Crow 4 Carolina Chickadee 1 Tufted Titmouse 1 White-breasted Nuthatch 1 Brown Creeper 2 Carolina Wren 18 American Robin 1 Northern Mockingbird 3 European Starling 8 White-throated Sparrow 5 Song Sparrow 1 Eastern Towhee 4 Northern Cardinal 1 Common Grackle 2 House Finch 1 American Goldfinch Number of Taxa: 23