I stepped outside this morning and wound up recording 31 species, 8 of them warblers, including Chestnut-sided, Blackburnian, a pair of Parulas, and my FOY Magnolia, before dragging myself back inside again. Just imagine what I might have seen if I hadn’t been still in my pajamas at the time…
After a series of errands and appointments, I returned home and looked out the window to find a Lincoln’s Sparrow in my brush pile, another FOY for me.
A bit later, while waiting for my daughter to finish an appointment, I cruised some roads through the Hadley farm fields and heard two Eastern Meadowlarks singing, one along Mill Valley Road just east of Maple (very near where the Cattle Egrets recently turned up), the other near South Maple south of Moody Bridge Road (the species occurs pretty regularly around the Silvio Conte NWR tract further west on Moody Bridge). I also noticed another Spotted Sandpiper perched atop the solar panels of the solar farm along Mill Valley, right where I’d seen three of them last week.
In other Valley birding, that Silvio Conte NWR tract I mentioned, a.k.a. the Fort River Trail, has probably been the most exciting place lately, with a White-eyed Vireo found on May 11 by Mary McKitrick, and a Clay-colored Sparrow photographed by Devin and Aidan Griffiths on May 12. The place has had 25 warbler species this month (and that month is only half over), along with 9 sparrows, 5 vireos, and over 110 total species since May 1. One tantalizing bird: I was driving past on the evening of May 12 and heard what sounded very much like a Golden-winged Warbler singing. Larry Therrien returned the next morning and managed a couple of recordings. Unfortunately, neither of us could get a look at the critter, which sang only twice when I heard it and three times for Larry the following morning before going silent. Given the possibility of a Brewster’s, a Lawrence’s, or a vocally versatile Blue-winged being able to sing the Golden-winged’s song, this might have to be one that got away….