On a cold and rainy morning, 4 of us (a big thank you to our dedicated walk leaders!) ventured about the area by the visitor’s center at the Blue Ridge Center for Environmental Stewardship (BRCES) while trying to stay somewhat dry and keep out of the way of the Boy Scout leader training that was taking place. We found a few birds in the poor visibility, but only 18 species total. We only tolerated the rain for about 30 minutes before mutually disbanding. The complete list can be found at https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S49486317 . No species were found outside the normal complement of wintering and year round species.
White-crowned Sparrows Photo by Bryan Henson
After the walk, Allison and I proceeded to Arnold Rd. Upon arrival we found, by car, a generous flock of sparrows and a pair of American Kestrels. Over the course of the next hour and half, we waited patiently for the rain to subside and the sparrows to come out and make themselves visible. One by one, we ticked off White-throated, Chipping, Field, Song, White-crowned, Lincoln’s, Swamp Sparrows and Dark-eyed Junco. A decent sized (40+) flock of Robins and an even larger flock of Cedar Waxwings also amused us. As we were about to wrap up our drive, a late Tennessee Warbler flew out of the shrubs giving us a few seconds of pleasing yellow-green warbler excitement. The full list of Arnold Rd can be found here: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S49488133
Allison and I also took a few side trips to various decent rainy day birding by car spots – Ash George Rd (nothing of note), Lucketts, White’s Ford Regional Park (almost nothing at all), and Morven Park (not much). In Lucketts, we spied our FOS Northern Harrier and at Hibler Rd, we found a couple Wilson’s Snipes at the infamous mud pile and the return of White-crowned Sparrows to our favorite bramble pile.
The BRCES monthly walk is held on the 4th Saturday of the month (meeting rain! or shine at 8am at the Visitor’s Center parking lot) and is sponsored by Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy – more LWC events can be found at https://loudounwildlife.org/events/ .