Thirteen hardy birders braved the 27 degree weather and 10 mph winds at the monthly Bles Park walk on March 19. Their determination was rewarded with some pretty good looks at some lovely birds. In the marsh, we found a pair of Wood Ducks providing a great look at the contrast of the male and female of this beautiful species. We found several other waterfowl in the marsh: American Coots, a Pied-billed Grebe, Mallards, Canada geese and Green-winged Teals. Red-winged Blackbirds made quite the ruckus around the marsh, seemingly working on establishing breeding territories.
When we came to Broad Run, we found more waterfowl: Common Mergansers and Hooded Mergansers. We also found a nice group of other birds: White-throated Sparrows, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Downy Woodpecker and White-breasted Nuthatch. As we walked down the trail, we were treated to wonderful views of the often skittish Winter Wren who was bouncing from point to point on a pile of sticks. Brown Creepers also provided delightful views further down the trail. Shortly before we left, we came across an Eastern Phoebe on the edge of the wetlands, which was a first of year for many.
The complete list of 39 species can be viewed on eBird at: https://ebird.org/checklist/S131273743.