Sunday, September 2, 2018

Birding on Broadmeade Walk

Eight people joined me this morning for the monthly group walk on Lake Creek Trail. We started at 7:30 at the Parmer Village end and spent two and a half hours covering about one mile of the trail. Before we left the pond we watched this White-tailed Deer fawn following its mother along the east edge:

White-tailed Deer Fawn

The first half of the walk turned out to be an exciting morning of fall migration birding! In the creek bed just east of the trail we got brief looks at a few Orchard Orioles and Yellow Warblers. We also saw a Cooper's Hawk fly by, low in hunting mode, and we got to experience how most of the birds quieted down in response. Approaching the last dam on the creek we spotted three male Blue Grosbeaks feeding on seeds in the johnson grass. A little later on the other side of the creek we got great looks at them and I got this photo of one:

Blue Grosbeak - 2

These birds look a lot like a blue Northern Cardinal, with a big heavy conical bill and a black face, but with a slightly shorter tail and shorter crest. They are common breeding birds in many parts of Texas, but in the neighborhood we only get to see them during spring and fall migration.

At this same spot we saw several Yellow Warblers and Orchard Orioles, also heading south. Back on the north side of the creek we were thrilled when at least five south-bound Dickcissels landed up in the top of a live oak tree, in great morning light:


And then a first-year male Baltimore Oriole joined them!

Baltimore Oriole - 2

Here they are together. See the oriole way up in the top left:

Baltimore Oriole and Dickcissels

The rest of the walk was fun, but as the temperature rose the bird activity, as expected, decreased. We ended up finding 36 species of birds.

Here's our complete bird list on eBird.

And here are a few more photos on Flickr.

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