Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Finally….some sun!

Well it has been a few days since we’ve made it over to the park, so with the sun shining we set out.  First thing I noticed were all the dandelions going to seed in the vacant lots…figured there should be something interesting in there eating the seeds…and sure enough…

Chehalis Estuary

it didn’t take long to spot a Chipping Sparrow, amongst the White Crowned.  Didn’t manage a picture of today’s bird but this file photo was taken in the area back in 2006.  We usually see a few Chipping Sparrow each migration season as they head north and east,  The bright rust coloured crown is the defining characteristic.

Pacific Choke Cherry Tree

headed along the trail and saw the Pacific Choke Cherry trees were starting to bloom..

Pacific Choke Cherry blossom

here is a detail of the flower cluster.  There are a number of these trees located in Eagle Point park and the fruits they produce are another important food source for birds.

White Crowned Sparrow on path

a bit further along, a White Crowned Sparrow at another dandelion…I’ve mentioned before how important this ‘weed’ is to birds…but it is also extremely important to another native – the Black Bear.  I’m surprised that there haven’t been any reports of Black Bear yet…but thought I’d throw in this picture of one that I took on Sunday on the way up to Manning Park…

with a mouthful 

although I am very happy to live in an area where Black Bears roam free I wouldn’t actually want to find myself this close to one…at least not while out on a walk!

no more logs 'log bay'

Back to today, we reached the log bay, which is no longer a bay put part of the whole, and where there are no longer any logs visible…they are all under water.

Swallow activity at pilings

there was lots of Swallow activity around these pilings, in fact both Tree Swallows and Barn Swallows were swooping past constantly.  Lots of bird activity all along the trail..

Gold Crowned Sparrow

noticed this Gold Crown Sparrow…the ‘gold’ crown not visible in this shot


and then…a Flycatcher…again the problem…what kind?  I think the bill is too big for a Hammond’s, it was small…perhaps a Pacific Slope? I’ll settle on that, at least until someone corrects me!

no worries

they’ll be no fear of upsetting anyone by using this trail now….

from viewing platform

the view from the viewing platform of what was the first bay…we’ve probably only got a few days left to actually even be able to get to the viewing platform..

Orange Crowned Warbler

there was all kinds of activity in this area…here an Orange Crowned Warbler – one of many…

Yellow Rump Warbler

here a female Yellow Rump Warbler – again one of many and I just noticed, a ‘myrtle’ rather than an ‘Audubon’.  There was also cautious activity at both the Bushtit nest and the site of the Black Cap Chickadee nest which tells me nesting is well under way…AND almost forgot to mention that while I was at the ‘log bay’ a pair of Wood Ducks flew past…

Male leaving

this file photo shows a male Wood Duck.  Wood Ducks have nested in the vicinity of the log bay for several years now.  I’m not sure just where as they are cavity nesters….meaning they nest quite high up in a hole in a tree.  They will also nest in special nesting boxes, but to my knowledge none have been put up in this area.

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