Date: 5/14/18 7:16 pm From: Peter Fissel <peter.fissel...> Subject: [wisb] Wyalusing St. Park today
A bunch of us from Madison went to Wyalusing State Park in Grant Co. today. Despite driving through rain and fog on the way there, conditions rapidly improved once we got there a bit before 9:00 a.m. After watching the Baltimore Orioles and RT Hummingbirds at the entrance station feeders for a minute, we went to the Turkey Hollow Picnic Area first, hoping for a Yellow-throated Warbler. I thought maybe I heard one back in the woods, but only once. We also heard our first of many (many) Cerulean Warblers. Since we weren't sure how much birding time we had available based on how the radar looked earlier, we decided to maximize our time on Long Valley Rd.
At the intersection of Long Valley and the road up to the Passenger Pigeon Monument, we finally had a Yellow-throated Warbler. He wasn't terribly cooperative at first, always way up in the canopy, but we all eventually got a look at him. Also had a nice look at a Cerulean a little ways past the pine stand. Lots (and LOTS) of Redstarts were kind of distracting, since there were other warblers in the area. We eventually headed down Long Valley and finally heard an Acadian Flycatcher. Not long after that, I heard a Kentucky Warbler and we jumped out of the cars. We could tell he was close, and Jim "Eagle Eyes" Otto finally spotted him sitting on a horizontal branch in the mid-story. He was initially facing away, which was why he was so hard to spot, but finally turned around and you could pick him out without bins.
Down at the boat landing, the water was up to the base of the kiosk, and the pier was way out in the water and probably damaged by the trees piled up against it. A Prothonotary was working the flooded woods past the canoe racks, and there were tons of other warblers in the trees (I think we ended up with 25 species for the park.) Scarlet Tanagers were all over, usually down low. The only target bird we missed was Louisiana Waterthrush, but the hike up the abandoned road was worth it because of all the birds bathing in the pools in the stream channel. Great day birding, and the weather turned out fine.