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Thursday
Sep222016

west rutland marsh - september monitoring report

It was a glorious first day of autumn at West Rutland Marsh! Forty-five species beat last year by three and our September average of 39. We originally thought the day’s tally was 44, but a photo later revealed we actually had one additional species, a northern parula. Thirteen lucky participants all contributed to the total.

The day started with two tussling marsh wrens near the boardwalk, perhaps an immature still begging food of an adult?

One of the highlights of the day was Philadelphia vireo, with a nearby red-eyed vireo for contrast. They were both feeding frantically, but we had good looks at each. It was a life bird for some participants. Two warbling vireos were singing weakly.

Swamp SparrowRed-winged blackbird and blue jay numbers were high with 243 and 69, respectively.

Warblers included the parula, a black-throated green warbler, a magnolia warbler, a chestnut-sided warbler and several common yellowthroats.

Gray catbirds are still around in good numbers – 14 (last year we counted 13). Swamp sparrows are stilling singing away as well as a few marsh wrens. White-throated sparrows are putting in an appearance as the season changes.

Raptor numbers were low, one in fact, a sharp-shinned hawk.

Species #151 for our monitoring walk appeared today: an immature northern mockingbird, keeping company with starlings. At first we thought it was a juvenile starling, but its long tail and white wing patches gave it away.

The next monitoring walk is scheduled for Saturday, October 15, at 8 a.m.

Today’s list:

Canada Goose  9
Wood Duck  12
Mallard  7
Great Blue Heron  2
Sharp-shinned Hawk  1
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon)  2
Mourning Dove  6
Belted Kingfisher  2
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker  1
Downy Woodpecker  8
Hairy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  1
Pileated Woodpecker  2
Eastern Phoebe  9
Philadelphia Vireo  1    
Warbling Vireo  2    
Red-eyed Vireo  3
Blue Jay  69
American Crow  4
Common Raven  3
Black-capped Chickadee  15
Red-breasted Nuthatch  2
White-breasted Nuthatch  1
House Wren  1
Marsh Wren  3
American Robin  1
Gray Catbird  14
Northern Mockingbird  1    
European Starling  5
Cedar Waxwing  2
Common Yellowthroat  4
Magnolia Warbler  1
Chestnut-sided Warbler  1
Black-throated Green Warbler  1
White-throated Sparrow  3
Song Sparrow  5
Swamp Sparrow  15
Northern Cardinal  2
Rose-breasted Grosbeak  1
Red-winged Blackbird  243
House Finch  1
Purple Finch  1
American Goldfinch  9
House Sparrow  1

Saturday
Oct172015

west rutland marsh - october monitoring report

Dire predictions of bad weather were greatly exaggerated. Sixteen(!) participants, including some new faces, turned out for the 171st monitoring walk around West Rutland Marsh. The weather turned out to be quite pleasant and of course the Vermont foliage spectacular.

Thirty-four species turned out as well, quite a bit more than last year’s 23 species, and just above our October average of 32. Waterfowl was in short supply, no doubt due to the presence of hunters in the area.

Raptor numbers were good with Sharp-shinned Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk, and American Kestrel seen. Turkey Vultures and Common Ravens were also soaring high above the marsh. The ravens seemed to be winning the ‘who can fly highest’ contest.

White-throated SparrowTwo Ruffed Grouse were observed, one flushed from the side of the road and a second drumming in the woods along Whipple Hollow Road.

Six sparrow species were seen including one White-crowned Sparrow. White-throated Sparrows were singing bits of their song. The juncos are back!

American Robins were in good numbers with 49 observed. Yellow-rumped Warblers, widely reported throughout Vermont last week, were low in number with only two seen.

A highlight of the walk was a male Purple Finch sitting high in a bare tree in the bright light and singing his heart out as if it was the first day of spring.

The next marsh walk is scheduled for Thursday, November 19, at 8 a.m.

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s list:

Canada Goose  2
Mallard  11
Ruffed Grouse  2
Wild Turkey  9
Turkey Vulture  3
Sharp-shinned Hawk  1
Red-tailed Hawk  4
Mourning Dove  3
Belted Kingfisher  1
Downy Woodpecker  3
Hairy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  2
American Kestrel  2
Blue Jay  16
American Crow  7
Common Raven  4
Black-capped Chickadee  13
White-breasted Nuthatch  2
American Robin  49
European Starling  12
Cedar Waxwing  1
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle)  2
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored)  4
White-crowned Sparrow  1
White-throated Sparrow  5
Song Sparrow  11
Swamp Sparrow  2
Northern Cardinal  4
Red-winged Blackbird  25
Common Grackle  22
House Finch  5
Purple Finch  1    
American Goldfinch  5
House Sparrow  2

Saturday
Jun132015

west rutland marsh - june monitoring report


Mallard with youngWe probably say this every year, but nothing beats West Rutland Marsh in June for birding! Twelve participants on today’s monitoring walk, our 167th monthly walk, tallied 65 species. This is a bit more than our June average of 60 and a lot more than last year’s 57!

Herons were a highlight with American, Least, Great Blue and Green. An American Bittern flew across a hay field on the east side of Marble Street while later another flew overhead has we walked up Water Street.

The only raptor of the day was a single Red-tailed Hawk.

A good number of warblers were tallied: Ovenbird, Northern Waterthrush, Black-and-White, Common Yellowthroat, American Redstart, Yellow Warbler and Chestnut-sided.

As expected there was plenty of evidence of the breeding season with a female Mallard sitting on a log with her young, a nest box filled with cheeping Tree Swallows, a Baltimore Oriole carrying food and several species agitated by our presence.

The next marsh walk is scheduled for Thursday, July 9, at 7 a.m.

Today list:

Canada Goose  1
Mallard  9
American Bittern  2
Least Bittern  1
Great Blue Heron  2
Green Heron  3
Turkey Vulture  3
Red-tailed Hawk  1
Virginia Rail  1
Mourning Dove  6
Black-billed Cuckoo  1
Chimney Swift  1
Ruby-throated Hummingbird  2
Belted Kingfisher  3
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker  1
Downy Woodpecker  2
Northern Flicker  1
Pileated Woodpecker  1
Eastern Wood-Pewee  1
Alder Flycatcher  6
Willow Flycatcher  4
Least Flycatcher  2
Great Crested Flycatcher  2
Eastern Kingbird  6
Yellow-throated Vireo  2
Warbling Vireo  6
Red-eyed Vireo  13
Blue Jay  7
American Crow  7
Common Raven  2
Northern Rough-winged Swallow  1
Tree Swallow  6
Barn Swallow  5
Black-capped Chickadee  5
Tufted Titmouse  2
House Wren  2
Marsh Wren  6
Veery  7
Wood Thrush  1
American Robin  9
Gray Catbird  8
Brown Thrasher  1
European Starling  10
Cedar Waxwing  13
Ovenbird  9
Northern Waterthrush  1
Black-and-white Warbler  7
Common Yellowthroat  12
American Redstart  5
Yellow Warbler  11
Chestnut-sided Warbler  2
Chipping Sparrow  2
Song Sparrow  8
Swamp Sparrow  11
Scarlet Tanager  2
Northern Cardinal  7
Rose-breasted Grosbeak  1
Red-winged Blackbird  20
Common Grackle  13
Brown-headed Cowbird  1
Baltimore Oriole  5
House Finch  3
Purple Finch  1
American Goldfinch  12
House Sparrow  5