Thursday, April 27, 2006

A little evening birding with a surprise!

This evening, Beth and I took a walk on the Delaware & Raritan Canal in Franklin Township, NJ. While crossing a footbridge, I heard a distinct sweet, sweet, sweet song. I had a hunch as to what it was, but it just didn't seem right. A few seconds later, a shocking golden-colored bird flew over my head and into a nearby tree. I knew what it was as soon as I saw it - "Prothonotary Warbler!" I shouted. Beth and I both got wonderful looks at the bird they call the "Golden Swamp Warbler".

There was a Prothonotary at this exact spot last spring and it even created a nest in a pipe. Alas, no potential mate ever showed up. I wonder if he's the same bird. There's a good chance, since this area is not traditional Prothonotary Warbler habitat. Unfortunately, he probably won't have luck finding any love this year either. Other firsts of the spring for me included Warbling Vireo, Baltimore Oriole, Common Yellowthroat, and Gray Catbird.

On the wildflower front, Beth found Downy Yellow Violet and Morrow's Honeysuckle (or maybe Lonicera x bella - an invasive Honeysuckle nonetheless). These were among the Henbit, Spring Beauty, Garlic Mustard, Celandine, and Winter Cress.


LauraHinNJ said...

Sweet :-) (repeat 3 times)

Patrick Belardo said...

I went back and got to see him again on Friday. Cool bird!