Date: 9/2/20 12:12 pm
From: Harry Armistead <harryarmistead...>
Subject: [MDBirding] Eastern Shore, September 16-18, 1960.
OLD CHECKLIST CARDS UNEARTHED, Eastern Shore, September 16-18, 1960. Hadn’t seen these in many years. Many.


September 16, a 13-hour effort working Hooper’s Island, Blackwater N.W.R., and ending at Elliott Island Road. That was a GOOD day. I’ll enter it in eBird soon. Highlights among the 115 species include:


17 warblers, a nice flight at Hooper’s I., 5 pied-billed grebes (unusual; seen at all 3 areas), 15 little blue herons (hardly ever see them in the fall anymore), 170 pintails, 70 blue-winged teal, 45 wigeon, 1 merlin, a paltry 2 bald eagles, my best 20th birthday present - a whimbrel on a beach at Elliott Island, a real late least tern, a black tern, 7 kingfishers (probably the most unusual count of the day), 5,000 tree swallows, 70 barn swallows, 7 marsh wrens, 12 Swainson’s and a gray-cheeked thrush, 20 red-eyed vireos, 41 boat-tailed grackles, and 10 Baltimore orioles.


Only 6 shorebirds. Strange to miss chipping sparrow, blue grosbeak, and indigo bunting. No owls. But this compares real well with some of the “first” fall counts in the 1990s. SO … I am going to consider it an official county fall count. Last year’s was dubbed the 24th, so some revisioning is going on with the 26th in 2020. Fair enough?


September 17, Hooper’s & Taylor’s islands and Golden Hill. Red-cockaded woodpecker 1, Golden Hill, a the site where an occupied nesting cavity had recently been found (but the Maryland Birdlife article on this breeding record is not cited in either MD breeding bird atlas; I don’t have these atlases here today in Pennsylvania; they are in Maryland; I will 2X check this assertion over Labor Day Weekend; if it is incorrect I will say so, and apologize, in a later posting.). Elsewhere: American kestrel 30, common loon 2, pied-billed grebe 2, merlin 1, northern waterthrush 1, Canada warbler 1.


Soon afterwards the woods at Golden Hill were lumbered. I go past there several times a year and always think of the woodpeckers. cf. Maryland Birdlife, v. 14, no. 3, pp. 63-68, 1958, “Nesting of the Red-cockaded Woodpecker in Maryland”, by Robert E. Stewart, the nest site visited by Stewart, Chan Robbins, Brooke Meanley, Sam Dyke, and Paul Springer in June 1958. Golden Hill is at Route 335 only a few miles south of where Blackwater refuge’s Wildlife Drive ends at Route 335


September 18, Ocean City, MD, area: cattle egret 2, American oystercatcher 1, buff-breasted sandpiper 3, black-billed cuckoo 1, gray-cheeked thrush 1, Philadelphia vireo 1, and dickcissel 1, the interesting landbirds listed here banded by Gladys Cole and Dr. (Gordon?) Meade.


5 years later at this banding station were my 1st attempts to extract birds from mist nets. This did not go very well. I was awkward and lacked confidence. I don’t think I broke any legs, but it would be a couple of years before I became fairly adept at it.


CALENDARS. This summer I’ve received 16 unsolicited 2021 calendars, some from organizations I’ve never had anything to do with. I guess this works otherwise they wouldn’t do it, but I have never made any contributions as a result of their receipt.


Best to all. - Harry Armistead, Bellevue, MD, and Philadelphia, PA.

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