I wrote most of this last night…It’s hard to believe–as I sit here with the windows closed not because it is too hot but because it is unseasonably cold outside–that Sunday was hot and buggy. Every time I stopped to get a photograph or look about for telltale movement, I was sampled by some mosquito accessing a bug-spray-free spot on me. At some point one merely gives up or gives in. The insects know the end is nigh for them, so they partied hardy, like 1999.
The birds certainly know something is up. Large flocks of Blackbirds, Robins, Cedar Waxwings and Mourning Doves assembled at the Chicago Portage last Sunday. I also had perhaps ten Ruby-Throated Hummingbirds, finally, although it was still not possible to photograph them.
Of course I was looking for more warblers. There were not very many. Three views of a Magnolia Warbler…
I sometimes do not know how the camera finds these birds when I can barely see them. A few views of a Confusing Fall Warbler…see if you can find the bird in this tangle! At first I thought it was a Bay-Breasted, but then on closer inspection it is likely a Blackpoll. We affectionately refer to these quandaries as Baypoll Warblers. (You will have to click on the pictures to enlarge them.)
Among a few other species present, I managed to catch a Tennessee Warbler and an Ovenbird.
My hunch that there might be more warbler action at Ottawa Trail, over by the Des Plaines River, did not prove to have any merit whatsoever. There were fewer birds altogether. But I did get a rather nice look at a Red-Bellied Woodpecker. Juvenile Indigo Buntings were present in both places and also Gray-Cheeked Thrush, which is a less common thrush to see.
It was only fitting to have a Red-Tailed Hawk fly by and put its stamp on the end of my outing.
Tomorrow I plan on going on Chicago Ornithological Society’s walk at Columbus Park. I haven’t been there in a couple years, even though it’s not far away. It will be interesting to see what we find. I was really looking forward to the original plan, which was to go to Humboldt Park as I have never been there, but the Chicago Park District has organized a weekend event called “Riot Fest” there, which makes conditions less promising for the birds and those who watch them.
Tempering the “Riot Fest” and maybe even our bird walk will be the forecast for early rain and cloudy skies! We are cloudy, rainy and in the 50’s today, so I can get in the mood when I go out later. Oh well.
That’s pretty good, you got to photograph a good number of birds. I think that your Winter is going to be rough and long. Take care Lisa! 🙂
So I’ve heard. We’re supposed to have a long, cold, miserable winter. But not yet! Glad I get to escape for a week in November… Thanks, HJ! 🙂
I am always amazed by how many different birds you see though I read a newspaper article which said that migration patterns are changing in the US because of climate variation.
We definitely see more birds during migration than the rest of the year, and it involves a large number of species. People who chase after birds day after day see a lot more birds than I do. But there are definitely changes I am aware of even in my meager 8 or 9 years of paying attention to birds. We are always talking about birds we used to see somewhere and they are no longer there, but until that observation is linked to larger accumulation of data, patterns are hard to confirm. I can only imagine what goes through the minds of people who have been paying attention to North American birds for 20-40 years, but those I know who are in that category still go out to find them. I could comment on this for about 10 pages so I’ll stop here!