Date: 12/19/17 5:12 pm
From: Stephen Johnson via va-bird <va-bird...>
Subject: [Va-bird] good sparrow day at Logquarter Lane (Conklin, Loudoun County)

Hello birders,

As Charlie Hagan pointed out to me during Saturday's CBC, powerline right-of-ways can be very nice habitat for us suburban folks.

Today I prowled the powerline cut crossing Bull Run near Logquarter Lane in Loudoun County, and found a boat load of sparrows. Fields, White-throats, and Songs dominated, but I came away with 7 species, which is a lot for me.

This was a very productive habitat for breeding birds last summer, contributing a lot of the confirmations we got for the Priority atlas block known as Arcola SE. It did not disappoint me on this winter day, either.

The most interesting behavior was a Swamp Sparrow, which perched up quite close to me, and then came closer. When I tired of looking at it naked-eye (too close for my binos to focus), and moved on, it moved with me. I have never been "followed" by a wild bird before. That's one instance now of a bird following me, against the trillion times I've stalked them.

The full eBird report is here:
http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41204670

Park at the W end of either Thorley Place or Lincolnshire Drive. There are some asphalt and/or wood chip paths from both of those. But a lot of the best habitat requires either hip waders or very tough, old pants. It helps if you love briars, a sentiment which I have yet to discover. (No matter how many times I hum "Barbara Allen".)

Cheers,
Steve Johnson

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