Birding the Blue Ridge Center
Joe led our bird walk this morning at the Blue Ridge Center. Here is his report:
Nine of us showed up for the regular monthly bird walk at the Blue Ridge Center (BRCES) this morning. While it wasn’t raining and only drizzled occasionally during the walk, the walk began in a heavy dripping fog, and even when that cleared the tropical humidity reminded all of us that something was brewing far to the southeast.
It was really quiet and not overly birdy except for one or two mixed flocks until it got brighter about 11 pm and we began to see not only a lot of butterflies but lots of young birds foraging around Mountain View Farm which is on the north side of BRCES.
While we met at the Education Center on the north side we carpooled to Sawmill Rd on the south side and walked back to the Education Center on the north side; after the walk four of us drove down Arnold Rd where we found several more species including a Baltimore Oriole.
The highlights of the walk included great looks at a Blue Grosbeak, several juvenile birds including Eastern Bluebirds, Chipping and Field Sparrows, and Indigo Buntings. About 7:40 am Joe got to watch two juvenile Blue Grosbeaks in the same area where the adult was seen later in the day. We didn’t find a single warbler – what a contrast from earlier walks this year.
The full list from today include:
Black Vulture, Turkey Vulture, Red-shouldered Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk, Rock Pigeon, Mourning Dove, Chimney Swift, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Pileated Woodpecker, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Willow Flycatcher, Alder/Willow Flycatcher (Traill’s), Eastern Phoebe, Great Crested Flycatcher, White-eyed Vireo, Red-eyed Vireo, American Crow, Common Raven, Barn Swallow, Carolina Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, Carolina Wren, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Eastern Bluebird, Wood Thrush, American Robin, Gray Catbird, European Starling, Cedar Waxwing, Chipping Sparrow, Field Sparrow,
Northern Cardinal, Blue Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, Brown-headed Cowbird, Baltimore Oriole, House Finch, American Goldfinch, House Sparrow