Monday, March 5, 2018

Birding on Broadmeade Walk

This morning about 10 people joined me at 8:00 AM at the pond in Parmer Village for my monthly group bird walk. We spent about 2 hours on Lake Creek Trail in intermittent light misty rain to see what birds we could find. Compared with last month, many more birds are singing, especially in the morning, and many start before dawn. This is a sign of spring as our year-round resident birds advertise their presence. As we walked this morning there was an almost constant background of songs from House Finches, Northern Mockingbirds, Carolina Wrens, Northern Cardinals, Bewick's Wrens, and Carolina Chickadees.

We made our way upstream to the last dam on the creek, and while we were there two Crested Caracaras flew by. This is a dramatically patterned member of the falcon family that is extending its range north in Texas and is an uncommon bird for Lake Creek Trail. My photography was limited by the cloudy and wet conditions, but I was able to get this poor photo of one of them:

Crested Caracara

From the last dam we also saw a few wild ducks (Gadwall and Blue-winged Teal mostly), two Great Egrets, two Snowy Egrets, and one Great Blue Heron.

On our way upstream we spotted a single Ring-billed Gull that was probably on its way north. I got another poor photo of it:

Ring-billed Gull

Besides the gull, the only other north-bound birds we saw were in a small group of swallows that had one Barn Swallow in it and about half a dozen birds that were either Cliff Swallows or Cave Swallows. All three species are migrating north now.

We went further upstream along Lake Creek Trail up to the first low water crossing in the T&C playing fields. From there, looking downstream in the creek bed we saw some winter-resident birds I always enjoy seeing: about 50 Least Sandpipers, 2 Greater Yellowlegs, and 14 American Wigeon. On our way back, two groups of Killdeer totaling around 30 birds, flew over the soccer fields. Killdeer are present year-round here, but these were most likely north-bound migrants.

We ended up finding 45 species of birds. Here's our complete list on eBird.

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