Brookville Lake 9/19/2010

When the alarm went off at 5 am this morning I just had to hit the snooze button just once. Realizing the night before that I didn’t have to meet the group of birders till 7:30, I thought I had plenty of time. Pulling off the highway I decided to go into Wendy’s to recycle my coffee. On my way out again I was treated to another of God’s great sunrises and the hope of a good day.

There was about 15 of use eager to drive another 30 minutes to our destination. My passenger for the trip was a young guy by the name of Tom, who I learned from was a Zoology major who went to Miami. He now does contract work studying bats. Very nice person to ride with. He also has a connection to a professor he knows who studies Saw-whet Owls in the Oxford area. I love connections like this.

Our first stop was the overlook at the dam. And for some it was a pit-stop.

As you can tell from the sky, it’s definitely overcast and hazy by this long shot of the dam. It does improve as the day wears on. Our next stop was the beach area to see what was cookin’ in the way of shore birds. After a brief visit there we loaded everyone up and dropped off the majority of the group and left the vehicles for a nice 1 mile hike along one of the main roads in the park. This is where things started to jump. We would run  into pockets of birds that offered a lot of different species. Not just birds but plenty of butterflies, which I didn’t get one picture of. But that’s OK, I’m birding, not butterflying.

As the day wore on, and the sun was climbing higher, our hopes to spot some Raptors started to pay off. From one of our vantage points we were able to view a large area with good mud flats, which had a bunch of gulls on it. I didn’t notice at first that they took off all at once, but Ned was quick to point out that if you looked right above the mass of gulls you’ll notice 2 Bald Eagles. He said that they normally all don’t take off at the same time unless it’s an eagle that spooks them. Yet another little tidbit of info to store away. Even though I got 4 new birds today, the highlight was seeing up close a albino Red-tail hawk. Seeing a bird like that, it’s no wonder that certain cultures would believe that to be a sacred omen.

Courtesy of Allan Claybon

Courtesy Of Allan Claybon

We ended the day over at the mud flats that we were looking at in the distance when all the gulls took off. And gratefully they all returned when we got there.

As you can tell by the next picture that we’re pretty tight along this narrow road. But this offered the best vantage point, and the different variety of shore birds was exceptional.

So I would say that after about 8 hours of birding, and that includes all the driving time, we came away with a rather impressive list of birds.

  1. Chimney Swift
  2. Red-bellied Woodpecker
  3. Northern Cardinal
  4. Blue Jay
  5. Great Blue Heron
  6. Common Crow
  7. Eastern Gold Finch
  8. American Robin
  9. Double-crested Cormorant
  10. Caspian Tern-New
  11. Ring-billed Gull
  12. Belted Kingfisher
  13. Eastern Blue Bird
  14. Chipping Sparrow
  15. Ruby-throated Hummingbird
  16. Palm Warbler
  17. Eastern Phoebe
  18. Northern Flicker
  19. Downy Woodpecker
  20. American Redstart
  21. Indigo Bunting
  22. Cedar Waxwing
  23. White-eyed Vireo
  24. Tennessee Warbler
  25. Black-throated Green Warbler
  26. Bay-breasted Warbler
  27. Emphid ?
  28. Red-eyed Vireo
  29. Rose-breasted Grosbeak
  30. Ruby-crowned Kinglet
  31. Grey Catbird
  32. Eastern Towhee
  33. Turkey Vulture
  34. Warbling Vireo
  35. Mallard
  36. Canada Geese
  37. Yellow-billed Cuckoo
  38. Pileated Woodpecker
  39. Bald Eagle
  40. White-breasted Nuthatch
  41. Osprey
  42. Broad Wing Hawk-New
  43. Black Vulture
  44. Red Tail hawk
  45. Carolina Chickadee
  46. Common Tern
  47. Great Egret
  48. Bonaparte’s Gull-New
  49. Franklin’s Gull
  50. Lesser Yellowleg
  51. Greater Yellowleg
  52. Sanderling
  53. Baird’s Sandpiper
  54. Least Sandpiper
  55. Stilt Sandpiper-New
  56. Pectoral Sandpiper
  57. Semipalmated Sandpiper
  58. Spotted Sandpiper
  59. Solitary Sandpiper
  60. Northern Shoveler
  61. Killdeer

Now that’s a helluva day of birding!


2 responses to “Brookville Lake 9/19/2010

  1. Great photo of the “Spirit Hawk.” This is a special animal to some Native Americans. Spirit animals, white ones, have been turning up lately. Deer, racoons, moose, etc.

  2. Red-tail hawk….Redhawk…GO MIAMI!

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