Seven people came out for this month’s wildlife walks at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland. Counting started right away as we worked to get a number of House Sparrows chirping from inside a bush. Things were otherwise quiet until we made our way to the boardwalk where we saw two Ravens flying over. Down by the river we heard some cryptic squeaking calls which turned out to be coming from either a Song Sparrow or some American Tree Sparrows. The highlight of the day came as we worked our way back around the trails, we came across a flock of seven Eastern Bluebirds which seemed to be sharing an interest in Ash tree seeds with American Goldfinches and House Finches.

On our commute over to the Hurd Grassland, we had to stop on the side of Weybridge Rd. to ID a Red-tailed Hawk that was being mobbed by a group of Crows. In the small hedgerow by the entrance to the property we spotted a group of Tufted Titmice as well as some Blue Jays. There wasn’t much activity in the big field, with even the silo across the road not producing a single Pigeon. But things picked up in the shrubland section with Chickadees and Cardinals and other regulars. On one dead tree we had the opportunity to work on the difference between Hairy Woodpeckers and Downy Woodpeckers as both were working away on its trunk. A group of Canada Goose seen flying to the south attested to the fact that there was open water somewhere in the area. And just for symmetry’s sake we ended our day counting another flock of House Sparrows also making a racket in a bush.

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, Jan. 14, at 8:00 AM. Meet at the parking area of Otter View Park at the intersection of Weybridge St. and Pulp Mill Bridge Rd. We hope to see you there.