Friday, May 23, 2014
Good day in Prospect with rarities
First among the rare types, a female BLUE GROSBEAK (that I was after) was very active within the Butterfly Meadow atop Lookout Hill, the lower meadow of the two. Its a gorgeous looking bird when I got up there at my lunch hour and spotted with Heidi Clevens help. I saw the grosbeak perched on dried sunflower stalks whereas it was spotted also on fence posts and the rubus blackberry bramble shrubs.
The other very good sighting given its number was MOURNING WARBLER. Besides the usual short staying resident at the southwest corner of Quaker Cemetery pothole, by the DO NOT ENTER signs at the horse trail, the cooperative MOURNING WARBLER delighted birders. Sometimes this bird would fly across to the Portasan site.But there are two more MOURNINGS reports. One was also In Butterfly meadow shortly after the aforementioned, and a third in the North Midwood area, a half mile away. first seen last nite ( evening). ( see Adam's report). So three MOWA is quite a catch for the park.
Then there is OLIVE SIDED FLYCATCHER. This tyrant flycatcher was spotted above the Switchback trail which zigzags down Lookout Hill's south slope , coming out near the Maryland Monument ( Keir Randall observing).
The flycatchers are in force. WILLOW/ALDER , LEAST and quality YELLOW-BELLIED are all being seen in Butterfly Meadow or in perimeter woods. Take a walk in this area and you will definitely see an empidonax.
While I was up in the Butterfly Meadow, Heidi Clevens ( who by the way tells me the Blue Grosbeak is a life bird for her) and I also spotted a gorgeous male INDIGO BUNTING in the meadow.
Even with the peak birding gone, there is still very good birding to be had for the next several days.
Enjoy the holiday weekend
Keir Randall report