This month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grasland started off under beautiful waning moon still hanging in an early morning sky. In the plants along the trail we notices a large number of dew-covered spider webs, many with Banded Garden Spiders sitting in the middle of them. As we reached the boardwalk we discovered a small flock of chickadees with a Magnolia Warbler and Red-eyed Vireo moving with them. Warbling Vireos were vociferously singing our entire time there, perhaps in reaction to the spring-like day length. A Double-crested Cormorant made itself known by flying south along the river and a Wood Duck did too by swimming from one bank to another. On the trail back we found an Ipslion Dart Moth in the grass that seemed content to rest on a warm hand for pictures.

At the Hurd Grassland we cam across one of our best finds of the day, a Dekay’s Brownsnake, which unlike the Dart Moth was not as happy a photo subject, attempting to squirm away all through it’s session. The silos across Weybridge from the property held no less that sixty-six Rock Pigeons, much higher than the usual handful we see there. Down in the shurbland section we had good looks at two Viceroy Butterflies as well as a ragged looking Common Wood Nymph. Nearby while watching a flock of Cedar Waxwings working at the fruit of a Black Cherry tree, we spotted a male Scarlet Tanager now in its olive green winter plumage, an American Redstart and a Nashville Warbler. There was also another warbler in that group but our look was too short to ID it as can frequently be the case with fall warblers. We ended our outing visiting with Gale Hurd in her kitchen where we observed a Ruby-throated Hummingbird visiting her feeders.

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

Other wildlife sightings are submitted to the Vermont Atlas of Life.

Our Next walk will take place Saturday, Oct. 14 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