Over My Head I Hear Music

Yesterday’s birding time was shortened again due to my knee issue, and I returned to the Turkey Creek Sanctuary. It was not a very active morning, though I did manage three FOY birds.

I started out on the north side of the creek (on the mountain bike trails) and did one of the loop trails. I could hear several species of warbler, but was frustrated in my attempts to identify anything by my lack of warbler song knowledge and the birds hiding too well in the foliage overhead. I recognized Northern Parulas and Yellow Warblers, but the other 2 or 3 songs I have not yet figured out. Just before returning to the car, I followed some woodpecker drumming to a Hairy Woodpecker (FOY) hammering on a dead tree.

I drove to the main part of the sanctuary and walked the boardwalk loop. Again, I heard a couple of warbler songs high in the canopy, but was unable to see anything long enough for an identification. I suspected one song was a Black-throated Blue Warbler (FOY), and it took a good deal of stalking to catch a solitary male.

I heard more Blue-gray Gnatcatchers than I had for a couple of weeks, and there was one Gray Catbird that crossed my path. The Northern Cardinals are growing more vocal every time I come out, but they have not yet reached the distracting cacophony they will later in the spring.

High above, I also heard what was probably a vireo of some species, but it flew away too quickly for me to definitively identify.

The only other bird species of note that I’ll mention here was a White-winged Dove (FOY) that flew over the car as I drove home.

Here’s the species list for the day (including drive to and from the sanctuary):

  • Northern Mockingbird
  • Common Grackle
  • White Ibis
  • Cattle Egret
  • Mourning Dove
  • Eurasian Collared Dove
  • Common Ground Dove ♫
  • Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
  • Northern Cardinal
  • Blue Jay
  • Fish Crow
  • Black Vulture
  • Turkey Vulture
  • Gray Catbird
  • Northern Parula ♫
  • Black-throated Blue Warbler (FOY)
  • Hairy Woodpecker (FOY)
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • White-winged Dove (FOY)
  • Carolina Wren ♫
  • Osprey
  • Sandhill Crane
  • European Starling

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