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Thursday, April 30, 2009

April 30, 2009

A very short "scouting" walk around the property yielded the songs of Yellow, Yellow-rumped Warblers and Common Yellowthroat. At lunch, staff were treated to a Broad-winged Hawk calling and circling overhead. Another new arrival is that of female Red-winged Blackbirds (pictured right)! Also, a new installment of "Tales from Texas" is now posted.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

April 28, 2009

A school group went on a trip to monitor Peregrine Falcons in Marshfield today with our Youth Birding Program and managed to see one of the Falcons perched on the cliffs where they nest. Wood Frog egg masses were plentiful on our hike, and other birds such as Yellow-rumped Warbler, Winter Wren and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker were seen and heard.

In other news here at NBNC, we had our first Savannah Sparrow of the season visit the feeder today, and although we have heard Chipping Sparrow for the past week, we saw one perch in a Crab Apple tree near the Center and sing its "chipping" song.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

April 22, 2009

A new installment of Tales from Texas has been posted. We also had a visit from a Pine Warbler today, which briefly perched and sung from the Red Maple outside the office windows. It was our first Warbler of the season!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

April 21, 2009

Our camp group focused on birds today and managed to see 22 species despite the rain! Highlights included a very active Belted Kingfisher, Eastern Phoebes gleaning insects off the water at the beaver pond and a fly by from a Cooper's Hawk.

Monday, April 20, 2009

April 20, 2009

The first White-throated Sparrow of the season paid a visit to the bird feeder this morning. Wood Frog eggs were observed by our camp group, which was studying amphibians today. They also saw a Spring Peeper and Eastern Newts in the beaver pond!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

April 15, 2009

On another very beautiful, sunny day we've had more signs that winter is gone. A Milbert's Tortoiseshell was seen flying near the Nature Center. Bloodroot and Colt's Foot are in bloom and many green plants are sprouting new growth. Also, a Merlin was heard calling alongside the North Branch of the Winooski River!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

April 14, 2009

Tree Swallows have returned to the fields today, and have been seen coming and going from the nest boxes. Eastern Phoebes have also been heard calling from surrounding houses. The male American Goldfinch who continues to visit the feeder has almost fully obtained his breeding plumage and Wood Frog egg masses have been discovered in our small Cattail vernal pool.

Monday, April 13, 2009

April 13, 2009

A male Purple Finch was seen visiting the feeder today, along with our regulars, which now include Red-winged Blackbirds. Farther down the North Branch River, closer to downtown Montpelier, a beaver has been seen over the past few weeks, including this morning!

A new installment of Tales from Texas is now posted in which Alyssa explores sometimes shaky interactions with the public and poses some interesting issues and misconceptions that can occur when dealing with Golden-cheeked Warblers and their preferred ash juniper habitat.

Friday, April 3, 2009

April 3, 2009

This evening marked one of the first amphibian movements of the year in central Vermont and a continuation of movements throughout the state. Spotted Salamanders (pictured right), Wood Frogs, and Spring Peepers were found crossing the roads on their annual migration to breeding pools. More can be learned about this phenomenon by visiting NBNC's Amphibian Monitoring Program.

We've also had a barrage of media coverage this spring. Over 100 news outlets from Alaska to Florida, and beyond, have picked up an Associated Press story about the crossing site in New Haven, VT.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

April 2, 2009

A new month, and a new first-of-year bird. Two Brown-headed Cowbirds visited the Red Maple outside the office windows this afternoon. Other sightings included that of a male American Goldfinch, whose plumage is transitioning to the brilliant yellow of his summer attire. NBNC staff and volunteers watched as he shared a drink with two Pine Siskins from a puddle on the front step.

Also, the third installment of "Tales from Texas" is now posted. Ever wonder how you tell two Golden-cheeked Warblers apart? Well, I don't want to spoil it, you'll just have to check out Installment 3 to find out.