Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Birding on Broadmeade Walk

Last Sunday morning seven folks joined me for the monthly group walk. We met at the Parmer Village end of Lake Creek Trail at 7:30 and enjoyed about 3 hours covering 1 mile of the trail in sunny but surprisingly comfortable breezy weather. We found 35 species of birds and at least 10 species of dragonflies and damselflies (collectively called Odonates). Here are some highlights.

Starting out by the pond we got to see a large cloud of mayflies flying their up-and-down pattern over the water. I got this photo:


From the creek bed I was hearing a distant singing Painted Bunting. And after we entered the creek bed I decided to try and coax it closer by playing a recorded Painted Bunting song on my iPhone. It worked much better than I expected and everyone got good looks at this first-year male bird. (The first year males are all green.)

Painted Bunting

As previously mentioned, we saw Odonates! I was excited to see and the show the whole group the smallest damselfly in North America. This is a Citrine Forktail, about 1 inch long:

Citrine Forktail

Nearby we got to see one of the most dramatic but also common local dragonflies, this Halloween Pennant:

Halloween Pennant

And I was happy to see that the Widow Skimmers were back. They were easy to find in the tall grass along the trail.

Widow Skimmer

An unexpected mammal was this fawn, bedded down in Town and Country's large baseball field:

White-tailed Deer Fawn

And this juvenile Cooper's Hawk flew over the fawn, seeming to check it out despite it being much to large a prey item.

Cooper's Hawk

On our way back we found a few more dragonflies, including this male Checkered Setwing. Look at that bright red face!

Checkered Setwing

Blanchard's Cricket Frog is the most common frog on Lake Creek, and this one hopped out in front of us, right on the sidewalk.

Blanchard's Cricket Frog

Here's our complete bird list.
And here are a few more photos.
It was a fun morning!


Carolyn said...

These are great photos! Thanks for sharing so I could enjoy your walk virtually.


Anonymous said...

I love the mayfly picture. I remember them looking like bubbles on the edge of the pond! very cool. Thanks for sharing!