Date: 1/12/20 7:43 pm
From: Edward Crawford <coastalcoaster...>
Subject: Re: [de-birds] Eagle show and more - lower, eastern Sussex County
Wild Turkey bourbon, I hope.

On Sun, Jan 12, 2020 at 6:32 PM Rob Blye <rwblye...> wrote:

> We had a full day of errands and activities including the Sussex Bird Club
> meeting with a presentation on Purple Martins by Joel Martin (sic). We
> probably broke an attendance record with more than 100 crowded into the
> large meeting room at the Lewes Public Library.
> Carol and I were itching to get out in the sunny, warm, wind-less weather.
> We choose to walk across the street to our HOA open space and watch the
> sunset from the observation platform looking over Herring Creek and
> adjacent Angola Neck Preserve saltmarsh. The trail to the platform is about
> 0.15 miles through mature loblolly pine/ oak forest with a holly
> understory. Salt water intrusion killed trees on the edge of the marsh and
> it is a woodpecker haven.
> Our first bird was a single hairy woodpecker quickly followed by a
> red-headed woodpecker which was flagged as rare on eBird. Next came a
> red-bellied woodpecker. I thought we were going to hit the trifecta when my
> wife called out flicker but it turned out to be a second red-bellied. A
> Carolina wren scolded us as we climbed the steps onto the platform.
> We immediately scanned the copse of trees in the middle of the marsh that
> has an eagle nest and many snags where eagles often roost. No eagles-but a
> suspicious buteo that I think may have been a rough-legged hawk. The
> distance (800 m = 0.5 mile) and presentation (looking at us) made
> identification sketchy but it had a clear light belly with no breast band
> typical of red-tailed hawk, I called it buteo spp on my eBird checklist.
> Unfortunately, we missed the bird's exit,
> As the light ended we kept adding birds to our list: many bufflehead, great
> blue herons, several flocks of flyover snow geese, greater yellowlegs,
> gulls and kingsfisher. Then two big gulls flying downstream towards the
> nest site morphed into two adult bald eagles. The lead bird settled on one
> of the snags and the smaller, second bird wiggled ever so briefly on her
> then flew to an adjacent perch. My wife remarked that the eagles should at
> least lay eggs this year.
> In the waning light a single, perhaps immature, eagle flew upstream and
> after minutes settled into a roost in a pine about a mile away. Seconds
> later a pair of eagles were silhouetted against the sky locking talons,
> falling over each other in the air for several miles. One finally peeled
> off to the southeast over the woods and the second bird roosted neat the
> single eagle seen minutes earlier.
> The male eagle had left the roost site and we saw the female head towards
> Burton Point where there is another copse of trees that serves as a roost.
> We headed home in the twilight and were treated to yet another red-headed
> woodpecker in the same tree where they have nested in the past.
> We are now watching the Chiefs whup the Texans (??) and sipping bourbon in
> moderation.
> *Rob*
> Robert W. Blye
> 34603 Doe Run
> Lewes DE 19958-3332
> 302 945-8618
> 610 213-2413 mobile
> List archives:
> List help: <DE-BIRDS-request...>

Edward M. Crawford
22366 Bay Court
Lewes, Delaware 19958

703-901-4380 (mobile)
302-945-2287 (home)

List archives:
List help: <DE-BIRDS-request...>
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