Where Have All The Birds Gone?

Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker

Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker, scaling a building wall next to 155 N. Wacker Drive, Chicago

I could just as easily re-title this post to “Where Has All The Time Gone?” since I’m still trying to make adjustments to my ever-changing schedule. But this will be a brief tribute to some of the birds I have seen passing through downtown Chicago a few weeks ago. (There will be still more photographs from the rest of the month in a future post.)

The following warblers were present at Lake Shore East Park on September 28. This was probably the last “peak” of warbler migration along the lakefront.

AMRE 9-28-15-3081

American Redstart

BLPW 9-28-15-2934

Blackpoll Warbler

TEWA 9-28-15-3092

Tennessee Warbler

MAWA LSE Park 9-28-15 -2902

Magnolia Warbler

Yellow-Rumped Warblers tend to come through and hang around a bit later, so I was not surprised to see this one the following week.

YLWA LSE Park 10-06-15 -3521

Yellow-Rumped Warbler, October 6, 2015

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

But I was surprised to find the Connecticut Warbler below poking around in the grass as I was walking through Millennium Park on my way to Lake Shore East. There wasn’t much light and the bird was under some trees so this was the best I could do with the photograph.

COWA Millennium Park 10-05-15 -3296

Connecticut Warbler, Millennium Park, October 5, 2015

I have seen only a few White-Crowned Sparrows this fall, like the one below which popped out at 100 N. Riverside Plaza.

WCSP 10-2-15 (1 of 1)

White-Crowned Sparrow, October 2, 2015

I think the White-Throated Sparrow below was also from this new location. I will have more pictures and more to say about this newly discovered green space area along the Chicago River in a future post.

WTSP 10-05-15 -3319

White-Throated Sparrow, October 5, 2015

There have been a lot of Brown Creepers this fall migration.

BRCR LSE Park 10-06-15 -3595

Brown Creeper, Lake Shore East Park, October 6, 2015

And Ruby-Crowned Kinglets…

RCKI LSE Park 10-07-15 -4043

Ruby-Crowned Kinglet, Lake Shore East Park, October 7, 2015

For a couple weeks, almost, the most ubiquitous bird seemed to be Hermit Thrushes. I am still seeing an individual here and there.

HETH LSE Park 10-07-15 -3954

Hermit Thrush, Lake Shore East Park, October 7, 2015

The Yellow-Bellied Sapsuckers are now all gone.

YBSA LSE Park 10-06-15 -3552

Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker, October 6, 2015

At first I thought the bird below was yet another Hermit Thrush but on closer inspection I have decided it’s probably a Gray-Cheeked Thrush. Light can be tricky, but the heavy spotting on the breast and the darker flanks give him away almost more than his facial pattern.

HETH 9-28-15-2951

Gray-Cheeked Thrush, Lake Shore East Park, September 28, 2015

And for the longer view, here he is again sharing tree space with a shy Lincoln’s Sparrow.

GCTH and LISP LSE Park 9-28-15 -2964

So the warblers are all gone until spring. I did have a late Black-Throated Green Warbler on October 22nd which I posted on my flickr page before I realized I could now just upload it directly into ebird. It was my last “rare bird” sighting.

Below is another picture of the beautiful Blackpoll Warbler from September 28.

BPWA LSE Park 9-28-15 -3013I have more posts in mind and am just working on finding the time and mind space!

Thanks for your patience and indulgence!

8 thoughts on “Where Have All The Birds Gone?

  1. Not bad at all, you have a good variety of birds, most of which I don’t have on my List of Birds.
    Time flies so are the birds, it’s hard to reconcile that. I’ll opt to wait for next Spring and start over!
    Don’t work so hard Lisa! What’s your costume for tomorrow? Happy Halloween! 🎃

    • I’m just trying to make everybody happy. The birds, the choir, the clients, my bosses… (the birds do come first but there is no order after that!). I don’t have a costume but I do have a Crow T-Shirt. 🙂

  2. Lisa, Thank you for your diligence in taking and posting all these pix and descriptions. I certainly benefit from your efforts.
    Jim

    • Thanks, MaryLee! Yes, the Hermit Thrushes must all come down the lakefront in droves, there had to be at least 40 of them one day in Lake Shore East Park. But even when there’s only one or two they still come out, un-hermit-like, to say hello!

    • Oh you are too kind. Sometimes it’s years of poring over bits and pieces of birds in photographs and flipping through field guides. Other times it’s just being fortunate enough to see a species enough to have it down without thinking about it. I don’t consider myself an expert on any level but I always feel grateful when those experts I know express doubt about an identification! 🙂

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