Date: 4/30/18 10:32 am
From: Rankin, Gary <rankin...>
Subject: Good day for birding
Yesterday was a beautiful day for birding in the southwest part of West Virginia. After not being able to get out in our area for a couple of weeks, it was good to check out several spots along Rte. 2 including Green Bottom WMA, the Robert C. Byrd Locks & Dam, Ashton Ponds and the nearby Long Ridge Road in Mason Co. It was good to see 19 new species for the year, but the highlight had to be the Purple Gallinule that Janet Keating found at GBWMA. When Janet called, I didn't hesitate to head her way. Purple Gallinule hasn't been seen in this part of the state for about 35 years, and this one was a State bird for me. Other new birds for the year included Sora, White-eyed and Red-eyed Vireos, House Wren, Prothonotary Warbler, Chimney Swift, Orchard Oriole and Gray Catbird (GBWMA); Green Heron, Spotted and Solitary Sandpipers (Ashton Ponds); and Scarlet Tanager, Baltimore Oriole, Yellow-throated Vireo, Ovenbird, and Black-throated Green, Blackburnian and Worm-eating Warblers along Long Ridge Road.

In addition to the new birds for the year, it was good to see several Blue-winged Teal at Ashton Ponds and a Broad-winged Hawk on Long Ridge. Yellow Warblers and Common Yellowthroats were back in good numbers at GBWMA and Tree and Barn Swallows seemed to be present in high numbers (perhaps 400+ total for the day). At GBWMA the swallows were everywhere and even swarming out over Rte 2 at the bridge.

A really nice day to be out enjoying the birds!

Gary O. Rankin
Lavalette, WV
Wayne Co.
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