September Birding at Banshee Reeks and the Dulles Greenway Wetlands
The twelve birders on last Saturday’s morning monthly bird walk at the Banshee Reeks Nature Preserve, sponsored by the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy and the Friends of Banshee Reeks, found 38 species including ten Great Egrets swirling around in the sky in the vicinity of the nearby Dulles Greenway Wetlands Mitigation Project (DGWMP), an adult female Orchard Oriole, and good looks at a variety of different Magnolia Warblers and Redstarts showing the differences between males, females.
The group also saw a Fox Squirrel at Banshee – it climbed up a really big snag along the Goose Creek and stretched out in the sun on a branch. It gave all of us great looks and got lots of hooes and aahs in return.
After the walk, five of us headed over to the DGWMP where the highlight was a female Northern Harrier (photo here by Norm Gresley), a dozen Great Egrets, some of which were prob. the same birds seen earlier from Banshee, a dozen Blue-winged Teal, three Least Sandpipers, a Lesser Yellowlegs, and a Palm Warbler.
As for butterflies, some of the highlights included two Viceroys at the Wetlands and several Monarchs at Banshee.
We often visit the privately owned Dulles Greenway Wetlands Mitigation Project prior to or after the Banshee Reeks walk; if you are int’d in joining us pls let us know and we’ll be happy to include you if we are planning a visit.
See below for the complete list of birds seen.
Joe Coleman, near Bluemont, Loudoun Co
38 species (+2 other taxa)
Great Egret 10 clearly seen from Banshee Reeks in the vicinity of the Dulles Greenway Wetlands Mitigation Project, Black Vulture 40, Turkey Vulture 12, Red-shouldered Hawk 2, Red-tailed Hawk 1, Rock Pigeon 6, Mourning Dove 10, Belted Kingfisher 1, Red-bellied Woodpecker 6, Downy Woodpecker 3, Northern Flicker 4, Eastern Wood-Pewee 6, Alder/Willow Flycatcher (Traill’s Flycatcher) 1, Empidonax sp. 2, Eastern Phoebe 2, Red-eyed Vireo 2, Blue Jay X, American Crow X, Fish Crow 1, Carolina Chickadee X, Tufted Titmouse 2, White-breasted Nuthatch 4m Carolina Wren 2, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 3, Eastern Bluebird 12, American Robin 1, Gray Catbird 3, Northern Mockingbird 10, European Starling 50, Cedar Waxwing 6, Common Yellowthroat 1, American Redstart 6, Magnolia Warbler 3, Eastern Towhee 1, Field Sparrow 1, Scarlet Tanager 1, Northern Cardinal X, Orchard Oriole 1 adult female seen in mixed flock, House Finch 2, American Goldfinch 2
Highlights from the Dulles Greenway Wetlands:
Mallard 16, Blue-winged Teal 12, Great Egret 12 well seen & photographed by the five of us, Black Vulture 20, Turkey Vulture 40, Northern Harrier 1, Red-shouldered Hawk 2, Killdeer X, Lesser Yellowlegs 1, Least Sandpiper 3 small peep with brownish breast and back, small bill slightly curved down; too far away to tell the leg color., Palm Warbler 1