On a sunny and cool Saturday morning, 16 birders joined this Celebrate Birds walk on April 30 to explore the fields, wetlands, ponds and riparian woodlands of the very birdy Broad Run Stream Valley in Brambleton. This wonderful habitat showcases Loudoun’s natural beauty and protects an island of life in fast-growing Ashburn. The group, led by Bruce Hill and Bryan Henson, was immediately greeted by an abundance of resident and migrating birds, including great looks at nesting Blue Herons, vocal Red-headed Woodpeckers, a confiding Worm-eating Warbler and a particularly cooperative White-eyed Vireo.
The number and variety of birds slowed our group’s pace for the first hour to a crawl, but eventually we completed a circuit of approximately two and a half miles and spotted an impressive 66 species. A Barred Owl, Blue-headed and Warbling Vireos, Spotted and Solitary Sandpipers, Grasshopper and Savanah Sparrows, and a single young Hooded Merganser were just some of the other highlights for the day. A variety of newly-emerging butterflies and dragonflies were also in evidence along the grassy trails and wetland edges.
Stay tuned, as additional walks will no doubt be scheduled here in the future.