Date: 8/31/17 3:28 pm
From: Stephen Johnson via va-bird <va-bird...>
Subject: [Va-bird] Elklick Woodlands (Fairfax) 31 August

Hello birders,

Now that breeding season is mostly over, I headed out to a favorite spot in a non-Priority Atlas block, ready to hang up the Breeding Bird survey clipboard and see some migrants!!

So what did I find? Several breeding bird indications .. .. and one migrating warbler.

I know at this time of year we want to scrutinize first-year birds before assigning a breeding code - it's likely they have dispersed or started migrating. But even so, a downy, awkward bird with white gape edge and no tail, showing no signs of foraging for itself? Yeah, I'm calling that a locally bred bird.

Today's Atlas additions to the Manassas NW block were Mockingbird and Indigo Bunting (both Confirmed). Also had a Blue Grosbeak male singing in the same territory where they have nested for at least 7 seasons, so I counted that as S - Possible, male singing. A newly fledged House Wren was nice too, but had previously been confirmed in this Block.

A few birds coming through were probably en route, migrating, so I just marked them down as "Observed", not "H - Possible, in appropriate habitat." Those included American Crow and Baltimore Oriole (I never see Baltimores there.)

The one probably migrating warbler was a very young Redstart. I've heard of Yellowstarts and Orangestarts, this one was almost a Graystart.

Good birding,
Steve Johnson
Fairfax, Virginia

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