April 9th – Another Fine Day!

Liam spreading joy…and milkweed seeds. -KMP

What a lovely day! Cool at first but warmed up. Blue skies and low winds. And LOTS of birds. I can’t get over how productive the field edge continues to be since we took out so much buckthorn, built brush piles out of the slash, and transplanted dogwood. Again, there was a surge of sparrow activity all along the edge and we were able to tap into it (se banding results below). The field just has so much more life. Six species of sparrows, killdeer, and Red-winged Blackbirds and American Robins making forays into it, bouncing back and forth between the food it offers and the protection offered by the edge.

Chickweed clumps in the feed are already flowering and providing early sustenance to honey bees. -KMP

It’s good to have a keen and capable young naturalist like Liam helping out as you can depend on his identifications and his energy seems boundless. The new census route is working out well and gives a pretty good picture of what is at the main site, especially what birds are using the “new” field. And observations made while checking out the far side of the pond and the river add to our totals – which are quite respectable for this time of year.

A banding first for Liam and for the Farm: Savannah Sparrow. -KMP

There were lots of things to take in today:
– a Canada Goose nest on the far side of the pond with 3 eggs
– the pair of Blue-winged Teal acting as if they are nesting

The pair of Blue-winged Teal continue to hang out at the pond leading us to believe that they might be nesting. -KMP

– a pair of Wood ducks (maybe 2 pairs) also acting as if they’re nesting
– We first noticed the Osprey yesterday. Today it was being harassed by an adult Bald Eagle.

This Osprey was not too happy about the attentions of an adult Bald Eagle. -KMP

Adult Bald Eagle letting the Osprey know who’s boss. -KMP

– The pond is alive with frogs – we are hearing Chorus, Leopard, and Spring Peepers – and a Painted Turtle found a good log to sun on.
– And frogs are attracting snakes. We came across a group of 5 Garter Snakes that most likely had just emerged from their hibernaculum.

Three of the five Garter Snakes enjoying the sun…and each other. -KMP

– And of course there’s always the camaraderie that abounds around the picnic table with the exchange of great ideas. Karen and Liam are convinced that it would be nothing to erect and run a net system across the pond. Right…..

Karen and Liam discussing the advisability of setting up a pond-spanning net system to catch ducks. -DOL

Banded 32:
1 American Robin
3 American Goldfinches
20 American Tree Sparrows
3 Dark-eyed Juncos
1 Savannah Sparrow
2 Song Sparrows
1 Swamp Sparrow
1 Red-winged Blackbird

Species Count: 44

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