Sunday, September 09, 2018

A Splendid Weekend!

"Every one of us is losing something precious to us. Lost opportunities, lost possibilities, feelings we can never get back again. That’s part of what it means to be alive."

― Haruki Murakami

Eastern Bluebird Sialia sialis

Dottie Johnson and I birded Lakeshore Nature Preserve yesterday afternoon and came up with 14 warbler species. Best birds were Ovenbird, Blackburnian Warbler, Wilson's Warbler, Northern Parula, and Black-throated Green Warbler. We also got great binocular views of a Black-and-white Warbler. Naturally, we'd rather be birding the creek corridor of Pheasant Branch, but now Middleton has it completely closed off by order of the Police. Violators risk getting a ticket for trespassing. I've heard that the cost for restoring just the corridor will be somewhere between 2.5 and 3 million dollars, and might not even be reopened by next spring. Ugh.

If you haven't yet given to my GoFundMe campaign, I sincerely wish that you would. A tremendous portion of the content on this blog is created there. Anyway, these particular funds will be given to Middleton for the sole purpose of purchasing native plants, shrubs, and trees to help replenish the creek corridor's lost vegetation from the flood damage.

This morning I led a field trip at Pope Farm Conservancy. While there may have been more mosquitoes than birds, we managed to come up with a pretty respectable checklist:

Pope Farm Conservancy, Dane, Wisconsin, US
Sep 9, 2018 7:00 AM - 8:30 AM
42 species

Canada Goose
Mourning Dove
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Cooper's Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Eastern Wood-Pewee
Eastern Phoebe
Warbling Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Blue Jay
American Crow
Barn Swallow
Black-capped Chickadee
White-breasted Nuthatch
House Wren
Eastern Bluebird
American Robin
Gray Catbird
European Starling
Cedar Waxwing
House Finch
American Goldfinch
Chipping Sparrow
Field Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Eastern Meadowlark
Red-winged Blackbird
Brown-headed Cowbird
Common Grackle
Tennessee Warbler
Nashville Warbler
American Redstart
Magnolia Warbler
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Palm Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Northern Cardinal

Spring Green Preserve

After the field trip, Kate Jordan and I headed for Spring Green Preserve with the specific goal of photographing Splendid Tiger Beetles. Other tiger beetles present included Virginia Metallic, Oblique-lined, Festive, and Punctured. Bird-wise, the place was pretty quiet. In the forested part leading up to the bluff, I found a few Swainson's Thrushes and a Chestnut-sided Warbler. There were also Rose-breasted Grosbeaks and a lone Eastern Towhee still calling. Alas, no Lark Sparrows, Grasshopper Sparrows, Orchard Orioles, or Eastern Kingbirds―they're on their way to their wintering grounds!

Splendid Tiger Beetle Cicindela splendida

Rough Blazing Star Liatris aspera

All images © 2018 Mike McDowell

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