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Seventeen people came out for our Monthly Wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland on a gorgeous June morning to view and help us survey birds and other wildlife at these two properties.

At Otter View Park, Eastern Kingbirds acted as our greeters and we started our walk, flitting between apple trees. Down on the boardwalk, a sharp-eyed participant spotted a Ruby-throated Hummingbird perched at the very top of a tree. Marsh Wrens, Song Sparrows, Swamp Sparrows provided a constant soundtrack for us in the Marsh. A Virginia Rail was heard several times but not seen, even when it was right next to the boardwalk. A lone male Wood Duck was seen down the river as was a female Hooded Merganser which we saw fly up into some trees. A Mallard mom with 14 ducklings made a brief appearance on the riverbank too. At one point we saw a Baltimore Oriole perched in a very distant tree. Later we thought we had found it again, but that turned out we were tricked by a Red-winged Blackbird with a red covered leaf in front of its body.

After a quick carpool, we started our walk at the Hurd Grassland where we saw an Eastern Bluebird atop a birdhouse and heard several House Wrens singing their heads off. In the field we spotted a Merlin circling up in the sky. Unfortunately we didn’t see any grassland birds in the Hurd fields, but we did later spot a Bobolink at the property to the north giving hope that they are at least using our habitat for feeding. The shrubland section of the property was much better for the species we are targeting with our management. Alder Flycatchers, an Indigo Bunting, Field Sparrows and an Eastern Towhee are all evidence that things are going well there. But the highlight was a male Blue-winged Warbler heard singing its “bee-buzz” song, then later seen by our group foraging around the top of an elm tree.

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, July 13 at 7:00 AM. Meet at the parking area of Otter View Park at the intersection of Weybridge St. and Pulp Mill Bridge Road.

Twelve people came out for this month’s walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland on a beautiful morning, with lots of beautiful birds to be seen. As we walked the trail one of the neighborhood Merlins zoomed overhead spooking all the Red-winged Blackbirds. Down on the boardwalk we watched a Marsh Wren carrying cattail fluff down into a nest it was constructing. Two Virgina Rails were briefly seen, the hear making their grunting call from the marsh. And a trio of Baltimore Orioles flew in and chased each other across the property.

Over at the Hurd Grassland we were treated to the sight of both Eastern Bluebirds and Tree Swallows taking up residence in bird houses. A Norther Mockingbird was a surprise site flying along a hedgerow. In the field an Eastern Meadowlark briefly popped up out of the grass and disappeared again, giving us hope they might nest there again this year. Down near the pond we enjoyed long looks at an American Bittern that was trying unsuccessfully to make us think it was a tree stump. A Field Sparrow was spotted in the shrubland section of the property. And at the end of our walk, while enjoying snacks and conversation with Gale Hurd, we saw a Ruby-throated Hummingbird visiting her feeder, the first of the year for many on 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, June 8 at 7:00 AM. Meet at the parking area of Otter View Park at the intersection of Weybridge St. and Pulp Mill Bridge Road.

Barn Swallows

Six people came out to this month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland on what was one of the most beautiful days of the spring s far. On the songbird side of things, a recent arrival at the park was the Eastern Phoebe, and an Easter Bluebird was also seen hanging around. Read the rest of this entry »

 

This month’s walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland couldn’t have happened on a nicer March morning—sunny and seasonably warm and thoroughly enjoyable. And the birds seemed to be out enjoying the weather too. At the park, Northern Cardinals were belting out their territorial songs and Starlings were already investigating holes in trees. Read the rest of this entry »

 

This month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland took place on a cold and windy morning. A participant who took part in last month’s walk when it was -7 F at the start, claimed this morning in the teens felt colder due to the wind. Of course when it’s windy, the birds become hard to find. The persistent calling of a Tufted Read the rest of this entry »

 

This month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland was led by OCAS board member, Craig Zondag, on a very cold morning. Temperatures started below zero, but with a shining sun and no wind, it was surprisingly comfortable. The park didn’t serve up a large list of birds, but there were some good ones to be seen. Five Eastern Read the rest of this entry »

 

This month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland took place on a frosty morning when the starting time temperature was a mere 9°F. It was however a sunny and windless morning so the four people who came out did not suffer too badly from the cold. Read the rest of this entry »

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This month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland took place on a wet morning, but still a group of three observers ably led by volunteer, Jim Phillips still managed to generate some good bird lists. At the Park they started off looking at a profusion of 55 European Starlings which generally mass in the trees North of the Read the rest of this entry »

 

Nine hearty birders came out on a cold and damp morning for this month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland. Despite the dreary weather the birds were quite active right from the start with a singing Carolina Wren and Yellow-rumped Warblers observed right from the parking lot of the park. Further down the trail we saw Read the rest of this entry »

 

This month’s wildlife walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland on a breezy morning with a persistent front of clouds holding off the sun overhead, which made it feel like we were experiencing the first real cold snap of fall. At the park we had a little lesson in identifying Ravens which were molting the central tail feathers to make them Read the rest of this entry »