Yesterday morning 11 of us, including four visitors from the Augusta Co Bird Club, showed up for Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy’s regular monthly (every 4th Sat.) bird walk at the Blue Ridge Center.
We walked approx. two miles on the northern portion of the property and afterwards four of us drove a couple of miles on the southern side of the property along Arnold & Sawmill Roads.
While there was a rather low ceiling when we started it did not begin drizzling until we were well into the walk and it never rained enough to cut down on the birding.
The highlights of the walk were two Barred Owls perched close to each other on the Farmstead Loop near the log cabins, at least 4 Louisiana Warblers singing in different locations along both Piney Run & Sweet Run, four singing Eastern Towhees, more than 20 singing Field Sparrows, and at least 3 singing Chipping Sparrows.
After we finished at BRCES the four of us who were left (three from Augusta Co & myself) drove over to Bloomery Rd in Jefferson Co, WV to drive along the Shenandoah River where we added several more species.
We found a mixed flock of 11 Horned Grebes, one Lesser Scaup, and one Ruddy Duck. While none of the Horned Grebes were in breeding plumage several were pretty close. There were also a couple more Horned Grebes in other spots, a couple Pied-billed Grebes, a couple of Wood Ducks, a number of Common Mergansers, one female Hooded Merganser. At every location we stopped along the river there were Rough-winged and Tree Swallows.
We found 43 species at BRCES and added 9 more along the Shenandoah.
I’d like to thank Matt Orsie of Jefferson Co, WV for scouting the Shenandoah River for us yesterday.
Information on the Blue Ridge Center for Environmental Stewardship can be found at http://www.blueridgecenter.org. Information on the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy and its many free activities can be found at www.loudounwildlife.org.
Joe Coleman, near Bluemont, Loudoun Co
See below for complete list of bird species seen at the Blue Ridge Center as reported to eBird:
Canada Goose, Wood Duck 2, Mallard 2, Great Blue Heron 2, Turkey Vulture, Red-shouldered Hawk 1, Red-tailed Hawk 1, Killdeer 1, Mourning Dove 1, Barred Owl 2, Red-bellied Woodpecker 4, Downy Woodpecker 2, Hairy Woodpecker 2, Northern Flicker 1, Pileated Woodpecker 4, Eastern Phoebe 6, Blue Jay, American Crow, Fish Crow, Tree Swallow 4, Carolina Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, White-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper 1, Carolina Wren 3, Eastern Bluebird, American Robin, Northern Mockingbird 1, European Starling X, Louisiana Waterthrush 4, Eastern Towhee 4, Chipping Sparrow 3, Field Sparrow 20, Song Sparrow 3, White-throated Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, Northern Cardinal, Red-winged Blackbird 1, Common Grackle 1, Brown-headed Cowbird, House Finch 2, American Goldfinch 1, House Sparrow.