A nice group on a sunny day

A nice group on a sunny day

The theme for March’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grasslands was early signs of spring. The first of which may have been the 21 people who came out on beautifully sunny day to attended the walk led by Warren King. Signs of a more natural kind were the Red-winged Blackbird seen at the top of a tree overlooking the marsh, a pair of Wood Ducks on the open water of the Otter Creek, and a Turkey Vulture seen cruising overhead. We also witnessed a steady stream of American Crows headed north, tallying 133 of them during our hour at the park. Also of note was a Carolina Wren belting out its song from out of sight, and a Red-bellied Woodpecker seen working on a tree near the parking lot.

At the Hurd property we were immediately treated to a sight that heralded the start of breeding season, a pair of Eastern Bluebirds examining and possibly starting some nest building in a bird house. Another bird species freshly returned to the area was Northern Flicker, of which we saw two during our walk. We also saw a couple of small flocks of Canada Goose bucking the wind to head in a northerly direction. When we were at the north end of the property, Warren led us into the woods along the field to show us an enormous Sugar Maple tree which was well appreciated by all. Our outing ended Gale Hurd’s who’s feeders were strangely empty of birds when we arrived, but as we enjoyed some refreshments, they started coming in. Among them were Common Redpolls and American Tree Sparrows, a couple of reminders that despite spring like activities we had been seeing, it technically still is winter.

All our bird sightings have been submitted to eBird and the full checklists can be viewed at the following links:
Otter View Park
Hurd Grassland

Our Next walk will take place Thursday, April 11 at 8:00 AM. Meet at the parking area of Otter View Park at the intersection of Weybridge St. and Pulp Mill Bridge Road.

– Ron Payne