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Friday, May 25, 2007

May 25, 2007

NBNC conducted a birdwalk this morning in Barre at the "Cow Pasture". The Cow Pasture is across the street from Hope Cemetary and features deciduous woods, fields and early successional habitat perfect for birds. Our list for the morning included:

Pileated Woodpecker
Alder Flycatcher
Least Flycatcher
Red-eyed Vireo
Hermit Thrush
Cedar Waxwing
Nashville Warbler
Northern Parula
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Magnolia Warbler
Black-and-white Warbler
Canada Warbler
White-throated Sparrow
Indigo Bunting
Baltimore Oriole

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

May 23, 2007

We conducted our first "unofficial" butterfly census at the Nature Center. This is something we plan to do every week or every other week. Chip, Larry and Amelia walked the perimeter of the field for an hour and recorded the following:

Cabbage White - 5
Clouded Sulfur - 5
Eastern Pine Elfin -2
Silvery Blue - 4
Anglewing species - 1

We also noted a Canadian Tiger Swallowtail earlier in the day.

Monday, May 21, 2007

May 21, 2007

The warm weather has brought with it butterflies - finally! A Silvery Blue was seen checking out wild strawberry flowers in the butterfly garden and several Milbert's Tortoiseshells were found skimming over the fields.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

May 19, 2007

Venus and the moon formed a beautiful pair in the evening sky tonight. Brilliant Venus was situated just below the crescent moon, forming a "cosmic question mark!"

Friday, May 18, 2007

May 18, 2007

A Nature Center bird walk at Sodom Pond in Adamant this morning turned up 2 more Black Terns (see Erika Mitchells photo to the right). As reported elsewhere, the terns were feeding along with swallows (Tree, Barn, Cliff and No. Rough-winged). Common Loon, Wilson's Snipe and Ring-necked Duck were also seen on the walk.

Meanwhile, back at the North Branch Nature Center, staff added two new species to the bird list - a Northern Waterthrush and a flock of about 30 Brant! A flock of 60 Brant were also reported yesterday from Lake Willoughby.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

May 17 , 2007

If you need proof that low-pressure systems knock birds out of migration and into view, just go outside. The wet, wild weather of the past two days has produced nice fallouts across Vermont. Here in Central Vermont, 22 Black Terns joined a swallow flock feeding at a small farm pond in Marshfield on May 16. And today at Berlin Pond, birds were abundant (including two Black Terns among about 1200 swallows out on the pond). Here's the list:

Canada Goose (4)
Wood Duck (3)
Mallard (2)
Hooded Merganser (2)
Ruffed Grouse (1)
Spotted Sandpiper (2)
Black Tern (2)
Mourning Dove (2)
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (1)
Downy Woodpecker (1)
Hairy Woodpecker (1)
Northern Flicker (1)
Olive-sided Flycatcher (1)
Eastern Wood-Pewee (1)
Willow Flycatcher (1)
Least Flycatcher (1)
Eastern Phoebe (1)
Eastern Kingbird (1)
Blue-headed Vireo (1)
Warbling Vireo (3)
Philadelphia Vireo (1)
Red-eyed Vireo (1)
Blue Jay (2)
American Crow (1)
Tree Swallow (80)
N.Rough-winged Swallow (2)
Bank Swallow (20)
Cliff Swallow (100)
Barn Swallow (200)
Black-capped Chickadee (2)
Red-breasted Nuthatch (1)
White-breasted Nuthatch (1)
Brown Creeper (1)
Ruby-crowned Kinglet (1)
Veery (1)
Hermit Thrush (1)
Wood Thrush (1)
American Robin (3)
Gray Catbird (2) Tennessee Warbler (1)
Nashville Warbler (1)
Northern Parula (1)
Yellow Warbler (12)
Chestnut-sided Warbler (3)
Magnolia Warbler (3)
Cape May Warbler (1)
Black-throated Blue Warbler (2)
Yellow-rumped Warbler (15)
Black-throated Green Warbler (2)
Blackburnian Warbler (2)
Pine Warbler (2)
Bay-breasted Warbler (1)
Blackpoll Warbler (1)
Black-and-white Warbler (2)
American Redstart (5)
Ovenbird (2)
Northern Waterthrush (6)
Mourning Warbler (1)
Common Yellowthroat (4)
Canada Warbler (2)
Song Sparrow (4)
Swamp Sparrow (6)
White-throated Sparrow (2)
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (2)
Indigo Bunting (1)
Red-winged Blackbird (15)
Common Grackle (10)
Brown-headed Cowbird (3)
Baltimore Oriole (4)
Purple Finch (1)
American Goldfinch (5)
Evening Grosbeak (2)

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

May 8, 2007

A definite influx of migrant birds overnight! Gray Catbird, Common Yellowthroat, Ovenbird and House Wren all first of season birds at the Nature Center. And reported from the local area were Blackburnian, Black-throated Blue, Black-throated Green and Nashville Warblers. Enjoy!

Monday, May 7, 2007

May 7, 2007

Nature Center staff are often in the habit of eating lunch outside, which inevitably results in some interesting wildlife sightings. Today's catch featured the first Spring Azure (butterfly) of the season, a Six-spotted Tiger Beetle, a Bee Fly (probably Bombylius major), a Broad-winged Hawk and a Savannah Sparrow visiting the birdfeeders.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

May 6, 2007

Participants in our regular Sunday afternoon women's walks were treated to a nice display of early spring wildflowers. Between the nature center and the trail to Hubbard Park, walkers enjoyed blooming Spring Beauty, Blue Cohosh, Coltsfoot, Bloodroot, Dutchman's Britches and Red Trillium.

Meanwhile, around the Wrightsville Reservoir, some interesting bird sightings were reported:

Common Merganser
Spotted Sandpiper
Belted Kingfisher
Northern Flicker
Blue Jay
American Crow
Common Raven
Black-capped Chickadee
Ruby-crowned Kinglet

American Robin
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Song Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
Red-winged Blackbird
Rusty Blackbird
Common Grackle
Purple Finch
American Goldfinch

Friday, May 4, 2007

May 4, 2007

More birds were heard than seen on a Middlesex Notch bird walk this morning. New arrivals included a Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Hermit Thrush, Black-and-white Warbler, Black-throated Green Warbler, Blue-headed Vireo and a pair of Winter Wrens.

Wildflowers are just starting to bloom in the notch, including hepatica, Red Trillium and Trout Lily. Spring ephemerals should be in full bloom in a week or so! There were also masses of Eastern Red-spotted Newt eggs in the beaver ponds at the top of the notch.