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Century Count XXIII

First the bad news. We didn’t get 100 species on our annual Century Count. But now the good news! The birds we did see were wonderful Eleven participants tallied 93 species on 21 eBird checklists.

Prairie WarblerThe early morning stops at West Rutland Marsh and the Pleasant Street power line provided us with more than half of the day’s species. Despite the impending bad weather, the prairie warblers were in full song and we had good looks at them. We were alerted to the presence of a winged warbler by a ‘bees buzz’ song. Fortunately, we were able to see the bird and determine it was a blue-winged warbler and not one of the increasing number of hybrids. Several other warbler species were noted here including a Tennessee warbler. Tennessee warblers were heard at several locations during the day. Chestnut-sided warblers and eastern towhees were very vocal Chestnut-sided Warbleron the power line.

We had the expected species at West Rutland Marsh, Virginia rail, American bittern, marsh wren, yellow warbler and swamp sparrow. Despite two sweeps through the marsh we did not hear or see sora or least bittern. 

The Blueberry Hill WMA was the highlight of the day for us. Our goal was a cerulean warbler, but we ended up with 12 warbler species including two bay-breasted warblers and another Tennessee warbler, as well blackpoll, magnolia, black-and-white, Blackburnian, and yellow-rumped warblers. Ovenbirds and especially American redstarts were everywhere. A mourning warbler was singing in the large clearing east of the wildlife management area. After much searching we all had good looks at it.

We had a thrush trifecta at this location. First a wood thrush hopped onto the trail ahead of us, then a veery and finally a Swainson’s thrush.

By the time we left our lunch stop at Crystal Beach on Lake Bomoseen, a few drops began to fall. The one bald eagle of the day was seen atop the tallest white pine on Neshobe Island. As we made our way north and then looped around to the west side of the lake the rain became steadier and the temperature dropped.

Three male ring-necked ducks were a nice surprise at the Lake Bomoseen/Hubbardton marshes north of the float bridge road. Wood ducks and a great blue heron were there as well.

Black-capped ChickadeeWe decided a brief walk around the campground at Bomoseen State Park might be worth it and indeed it was. A silent Canada warbler was lurking in the brush while a Wilson’s warbler was hopping in the trees along the small marsh. Another Tennessee warbler was singing at the park as well.

The only black-throated green warbler of the day sang once near ‘the Green Dump’ above the Kehoe Fishing Access on the west side of Lake Bomoseen. One common loon was seen out in the lake.

A swing through the West Haven area proved to be worthwhile as we saw and heard our first bobolinks of the trip along with wild turkey, eastern bluebird and savannah sparrow. Two Louisiana waterthrushes were singing along Cogman Road and a green heron was spotted briefly. The day ended with an eastern meadowlark perched on a fence rail at a small cemetery on Main Road in West Haven.

Some odd misses for the day included white-breasted nuthatch, red-bellied woodpecker, hairy woodpecker and hermit thrush. Raptor numbers were very low, no doubt due to the weather.

Thanks to C. J. Frankiewicz for leading a great trip!

The day’s list: 

Canada Goose
Wood Duck
Ring-necked Duck
Common Merganser
Ring-necked Pheasant
Wild Turkey
Common Loon
American Bittern
Great Blue Heron
Green Heron
Turkey Vulture
Bald Eagle
Red-tailed Hawk
Virginia Rail
Spotted Sandpiper
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Belted Kingfisher
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Downy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Pileated Woodpecker
Alder Flycatcher
Willow Flycatcher
Least Flycatcher
Eastern Phoebe
Great Crested Flycatcher
Eastern Kingbird
Yellow-throated Vireo
Warbling Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Blue Jay American Crow
Common Raven
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Tree Swallow
Barn Swallow
Cliff Swallow
Black-capped Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
House Wren
Marsh Wren
Eastern Bluebird
Swainson’s Thrush
Wood Thrush
American Robin
Gray Catbird
European Starling
Louisiana Waterthrush
Northern Waterthrush
Blue-winged Warbler
Black-and-white Warbler
Tennessee Warbler
Mourning Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
American Redstart
Cerulean Warbler
Magnolia Warbler
Bay-breasted Warbler
Blackburnian Warbler
Yellow Warbler
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Blackpoll Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Prairie Warbler
Black-throated Green Warbler
Canada Warbler
Wilson’s Warbler
Chipping Sparrow
Field Sparrow
Savannah Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
Eastern Towhee
Scarlet Tanager
Northern Cardinal
Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Indigo Bunting
Eastern Meadowlark
Baltimore Oriole
Red-winged Blackbird
Brown-headed Cowbird
Common Grackle
House Finch
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow



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