The Second Saturday bird walk included 24 observers. It was sunny with the temperature starting at 74 degrees and ending at 82 degrees. We had 44 species and one unidentified gull. A well marked Red-tailed Hawk flew over. We all had a good look at a male Scarlet Tanager as he sat for several minutes preening his red-orange and black feathers. We also had a close look at 4 Eastern Phoebes waiting for a parent to bring an insect. And our Barred Owl was tucked in the top of a pine tree for all to see. - Report by Bill Deininger.
We had 25 birders who braved the 27 degree temperature, including a birder from Alaska. The second surprise was a Rough-legged Hawk who did a fly over directly above our heads. We ended up with 28 species, including a fly over Bald Eagle and a very tough to see Barred Owl.
In 2017, we saw a Sharp-shinned Hawk and a Red-shouldered Hawk who perched on a broken tree top and gulped a “critter” down. We had an unobstructed view at a very close range. What will we see in 2018?
The highlight was a Red-tailed hawk perched directly over the trail about 25 feet high. We were able to walk directly below the hawk, pass by the hawk and continue the walk with him carefully watching us. Great views at all angles. ~ Bill Deininger, Bird Walk Leader
Sub-freezing temperatures did not deter 26 birders for the November 2017 Second Saturday walk. Ice had formed on the ponds. Eastern Bluebirds and Pileated Woodpeckers came in threes. Birders enjoyed American Tree Sparrows. What will we see in 2018?
Several highlights include 23 Yellow-rumped warblers. Good looks at a Yellow-billed Cuckoo. The Cuckoo was initially on the ground, flew up at eye level for about a minute, then flew up higher before disappearing.
In October 2017, two Bald Eagles flew overhead and there were great views of two Pileated Woodpeckers and two Eastern Bluebirds. Fall migration reached a point when the only warblers to be seen were Yellow-rumped Warblers. What will we see in 2018?
Six warbler species, including eight American Redstarts, six Magnolia warblers and five Black-and-White warblers were viewed by the group in several locations. We had some good birds including a Barred Owl, a Scarlet Tanager, and a pair of Solitary Sandpipers.
Seven Magnolia Warblers were among the six warbler species on this walk in 2016. What will we see in 2018?
We had 25 observers Saturday morning, with a mix of experienced birders and many new birders. Sunny, with a slight breeze. Our 3 hour walk turned up 44 species. We did have 2 Bald Eagles fly over, one immature and one adult. Our best bird was a Yellow-billed Cuckoo. The Cuckoo was very cooperative. He stayed close enough for all to see and at one moment we watched as he consumed a large caterpillar.
"Seeing a Philadelphia Vireo is a real treat! The bird was in a group with an Eastern Phoebe and a Great Crested Flycatcher. Over the dipping pond Belted Kingfishers put on an aerial display, rattling loudly." - Second Saturday Bird Walk August 12, 2017 at Rocky River Nature Center Report
We started in the parking lot watching a Ruby-throated Hummingbird perched on a branch. The Scarlet Tanager was singing in the parking lot and a few lucky birders saw the bird as we started along the trail. We watched several Great Crested Flycatchers flying about.
Midsummer can be a slow time for birding, but not on this pleasant sunny day. A highlight among the 52 species observed was a Red-breasted Nuthatch singing high in a tree. Other avian treasures were four species of thrush and a Yellow-billed Cuckoo. - July 2017
A singing Veery, pairs of Wood Thrushes and Yellow Warblers feeding their young, and an Acadian Flycatcher on the nest were just a few of the rewards for walking through a cloudburst. The final attraction was a Belted Kingfisher toiling mightily to swallow a large fish.
In 2017, we saw an Acadian Flycatcher and a Cedar Waxwing on their nests plus singing Veeries highlighted this perfect June day. A slightly downy juvenile Barred Owl was another great find. A pair of Pileated Woodpeckers excavated holes in an old tree. Being summer, flycatchers are back, five species seen. What will we see in 2018?
Most of the birders would say our best bird of the day was an immature Barred Owl. It was on a tree branch about 15 feet high and five feet from the trail. Everyone had unobstructed views of the owlet. Down the trail we then saw one of the parent Barred owls hanging around watching out for the owlet. It was a great day for birding. Many species, many great views, many birds singing.
In 2017, migration brought warblers! On this International Migratory Bird Day the Rocky River trails had 12 species of warbler. Seven Scarlet Tanagers were welcome arrivals. The woods were rich with song. What will we see this year?
We had a number of early migrants, Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers, Eastern Phoebe, Brown Creepers, and both Kinglets. Other first-of-year birds that showed up include, Tree Swallows and Northern Rough-winged Swallows, a Broad-winged hawk circled directly over our heads, an early Green Heron and five Hooded Mergansers popped into view.
A Barred Owl was located high up in a pine tree. Everyone was able to see the Owl before it flew off. Cardinals were everywhere. Many gorgeous male Cardinals singing in many, many locations through out the entire walk. One Pine Siskin was spotted up high, but few of us were able to put binoculars on the elusive bird. Four Bald Eagles were spotted flying high overhead.
It was cold, but we were prepared. The sun actually came out later in the walk. We had a total of 5 hardy souls, binoculars in hand, with hats, gloves, scarves and warm attitudes.
New to birding? You will be amazed how much you can learn in this friendly group.
Sub-freezing temperatures did not deter 26 birders for the November Second Saturday walk. Ice had formed on the ponds. Eastern Bluebirds and Pileated Woodpeckers came in threes. Birders enjoyed American Tree Sparrows.
Two Bald Eagles circled over the Rocky River Nature Center as the group observed birds on the Rocky River, staying long enough for people inside to have a chance to come out and see. During the walk, there were great views of two Pileated Woodpeckers and two Eastern Bluebirds. Fall migration reached a point when the only warblers to be seen were Yellow-rumped Warblers.
The monthly Second Saturday walks are a great opportunity for birders of all skill levels to enjoy the woods and wetlands around the Cleveland Metroparks Rocky River Nature Center. New to birding? You will be amazed how much you can learn in this friendly group.
Birders will love the array of warblers!
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