Birder's Eye View

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Back on the trail

"In wilderness is the preservation of the world."
- Henry David Thoreau

Yesterday was fantastic. True, it was overcast, breezy, threatening to rain, and I didn't get out of the house until mid-afternoon, but it was one of the most wonderful days I've had in a long time -- it was the first time I've been able to go birding since school started at the end of August.

My sister and I took off in the afternoon for our favorite local park, and embarked on a 2 1/2 mile hike around the lake. The temperature was a perfect 75ish degrees; it was a little windy for birding, but I couldn't have been happier. Everything becomes so much clearer and simpler and peaceful when you spend a little time outside.

Fall migration seems to be taking its time this year. There was a greater variety of birds than I saw over the summer, but not nearly as many of the passerines I would expect to be seeing this time of year.

Nonetheless, I managed to see/hear a fair number of resident species, including Catbirds, Cardinals, Blue Jays, a Sandhill Crane, a Great Egret (pictured above), a Red-bellied Woodpecker (pictured below), a Common Tern, and a little Pied-billed Grebe.

Along our hike, my sister and I had fun looking for different signs of wildlife. We found the sun-bleached remains of a huge turtle shell, different kinds of animal scat, and signs of wild boar and armadillos.

I didn't get many birds out of the hike, but it was quite the enjoyable experience. I still have 2 more days of Fall Break, so hopefully I can scrounge up a couple year birds before I have to go back to school.

Until next time,

Happy birding!

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