Sunday, August 23, 2009

Nice Temp and Nice Birds

I'll just quickly cover new birds that have been showing up in the neighborhood for the past 2 weeks. I was able to get out onto our neighborhood hike-and-bike trail last weekend and this weekend and found several first-of-Fall bird species and lots of south-bound migrants. Here are the highlights:
  • A few of the elegant hawks, Mississippi Kites, have been passing over the neighborhood on their way south. I saw 2 last weekend and 1 this morning.
  • Southbound warblers in the area include many bright and beautiful Yellow Warblers, and this morning I was pleased to find 1 Wilson's Warbler.
  • Many small flycatchers in the Empidonax genus (mostly Least Flycatchers) are moving south through our area, and last weekend I also saw 2 Olive-sided Flycatchers. Here's a picture I got of one:

  • Orchard Orioles have been a relatively common south-bound migrant for the past few weeks. This morning I saw 2 Baltimore Orioles as well.
  • This morning 2 Upland Sandpipers flew over me as I stood on Lake Creek Trail in the middle of the Town and Country playing fields. This is a species more often heard than seen during its migration south, so I enjoyed watching them fly over.
Keep your eyes on your hummingbird feeders. My neighbor Don Markette emailed me recently about a Rufous Hummingbird that has been visiting his feeders. The males are dramatically reddish brown almost all over and are passing south through the Austin area. Also, a few even spend all winter here, so keep your feeders up as long as you like and maybe you'll see one!


Aaron DaMommio said...

Wow, I'd love to see one of those kites. They look gorgeous.

Mikael Behrens said...

Yes, unfortunately the kites are usually very high in the sky. But just once I found a few that had roosted for the night near our hike-and-bike trail footbridge. That was a fun find!

Anonymous said...

Mikael, today (9-6-09) was good morning in the backyard. The neighbors hackberry tree is getting a lot of attention. I saw a painted bunting and 6 Baltimore orioles. A male and female oriole flew down to one of my hummer feeders and it was the closest I have ever been to them. The male has to be one of the most brilliantly colored birds I have ever seen! It's far more colorful than the winter look they give us on their way north. Also at the same feeder a female downy woodpecker fed for quite a while as a male ruby throat tried to intimidate her away. I had never seen that before either. By the way, the hummer population has almost doubled so I guess we are seeing the southern movement picking up.

If these are the same birds that came through in the spring to feed on the mulberries I am looking forward to the grosbeaks as well.

Thanks, BackYardBirder