Nine people came together on a cold February morning for this month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and The Hurd Grassland. Besides the squeaking of our boots on freshly fallen snow, things were quite as we walked down the trail to the end of the boardwalk at Otter View Park, but when we got down there, as the sun started to come out, the birds came out too. First was a Tufted Titmouse loudly tooting away. Then light squeaking alerted us to the presence of American Tree Sparrows which had the consideration to pose for us in bushes. A pair of House Finches were spotted in a tree engaged in some pair-bonding activities. As we walked out Dark-eyed Juncos flew across our path into the marsh, and a couple of Carolina Wrens started singing and calling loudly.

A quick carpool later over at the Hurd Grassland, we were greeted by a good number of American Goldfinches. Down in the fields we paused to look at Pigeons perched on the silo across the road, and discussed how most of the local ones have darker plumage which helps them absorb heat from the sun on cold winter days. A bit further around the trail, three Eastern Bluebirds were seen and heard making their distinctive call. Blue Jays noisily made their presence known moving through the trees above a hedgerow. More Juncos and Tree Sparrows were found in bushes here as well, and we spooked a flock of seven Mourning Doves from a thicket at the end of our walk.

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, Mar. 11, 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.