Saturday, June 20, 2009

Weekend Rain = Grumpy Me

This morning I went to the Lake George Association and saw fabulous turtles. While I don't know the local turtles well, I like all the turtles I got to see. The spotted turtle was a favorite of mine, and I got to stare at a Blandings. It saddens me thinking it may be the only one I see in my life. The turtle was very curious so I got a great look at the nice pale yellow it sports.

A front is slowly rolling through New York this weekend, and it really looks like rain. If I desired to go birding ONLY by ear today, I could go for the next, oh, hour. But there's enough activity around here at the West Fort Ann house.

What kind of activity, you ask? Well, the Bluebirds have been gone for days now. We actually took the box down for maintenance, it was nearly in shambles, even despite knowing Bluebirds sometimes brood twice. But they seem long gone. No sightings, no vocalizations. Well, there's still a few other boxes on the same post. All spring I have heard a House Wren calling daily in the distance. Today a House Wren was sitting on the nest boxes, peeking in, going inside each hole, testing out how to get sticks inside the holes! Then it would sit on top of the post and call. I had a good laugh when the wren carried a very thin, 5 inch long stick to one of the boxes, tried shoving the stick in sideways, and when it shoved even harder the stick fell out of the box, onto the ground. The wren looked around for a few moments, then got on top of that box and called. So hopefully it'll nest here.

We also have more Black-capped Chickadees nesting in another nest box, and I spotted a young Tufted Titmouse at the feeder with an adult! The adults don't seem to mind my presence but the young one was a little unsure, but still curious.

There was also a male Ruby-throated Hummingbird repeatedly visiting the hummingbird feeder (yes, clear nectar) a few feet from where I was standing (I was hiding behind a bush to spy on the House Wren).

It also blew my mind to briefly hear a Wood Thrush off in the woods. There's a stream nearby so it's not unusual, except for the fact that in the 8 years that I've lived here, I have not heard one here.

Heard earlier was a Broad-winged Hawk. I heard them yesterday afternoon overhead as well, and ran through the house with my binoculars to get outside to make sure it wasn't that silly Blue Jay. Sure enough, there it was circling high-up. You could barely see it with your naked eye.

I also heard another Red-eyed Vireo this morning at the Lake George Association! I know their population is widespread here, but it still excites me.

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