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September 16, 2007 [LINK / comment]

Wild life at Augusta Springs

Having failed to uncover any significant migratory birds at Montgomery Hall Park yesterday, I was determined not to let this spectacularly beautiful weekend go to waste. So, I drove out to the Augusta Springs wetland area this morning, and after a slow start, hit "pay dirt" in terms of birds and other wild life. Altogether I saw seven warbler species, which is not bad, but it took a lot of effort -- and even some risk.

Not much was happening along the boardwalk trail, but in the bushes next to the spring I got close enough to some warblers to get some good video shots. (See below.) Then I headed toward the upland trail, and was soon stunned to see a Barred owl, only the second one I have ever seen in the wild. (Jacqueline and I saw one in Charlottesville about ten years ago.) Then the trail began a steep climb, and up ahead I saw some kind of animal on the trail ahead, and realized that it was a coyote, the first one I have ever seen on a mountain trail! (No Roadrunners, though. ) I tried to take some video, but the coyote was camera shy and walked away. After making loud noises and arming myself with a large stick just in case, I resumed walking, proceeding with great care. Fortunately, my risk-taking paid off, as I came upon a nice cluster of warblers and other migratory birds, including the first Gray-cheeked thrush I've seen this year, at the high point where two trails intersect. The return leg was relatively uneventful, but I did see a few mushrooms in the muddy soil. (Photo below.) Back at the boardwalk trail, I saw a few more warblers and then called it a day.

  • Hummingbirds
  • Goldfinches
  • Phoebes
  • Redstarts (F/J, M)
  • Flicker
  • Pewees
  • Pileated woodpecker
  • Blue-gray gnatcatcher
  • Black-throated green warblers
  • Magnolia warblers
  • Tennessee warblers
  • Yellow-billed cuckoo
  • Red-bellied woodpeckers (F, M)
  • Red-eyed vireos
  • Barred owl (FOY)
  • Black and white warbler
  • Pine warblers
  • Red-breasted nuthatch
  • Gray-cheeked thrushes (FOY)
  • Hairy woodpecker (M)
  • White-breasted nuthatch
  • House finches
  • Blue-headed vireo
  • Hooded warbler (F/J)
Black-throated Green Warbler

ABOVE: Black-throated green warbler: side view ~ front view ~ ~ Magnolia warbler
(Roll over to choose.) All three of these images are of female or juvenile birds.

Augusta Springs

ABOVE: Augusta Springs: once a summer resort, and now a nature preserve.

Clubfooted Clitocybe

ABOVE: Clubfooted Clitocybe mushroom.

Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 16 Sep 2007, 11: 14 PM

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Blog highlights have been compiled for the years 2010-2012 thus far, and eventually will be compiled for earlier years, back to 2002.


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The "home made" blog organization system that I created was instituted on November 1, 2004, followed by several functional enhancements in subsequent years. I make no more than one blog post per day on any one category, so some posts may cover multiple news items or issues. Blog posts appear in the following (reverse alphabetical) order, which may differ from the chronological order in which the posts were originally made:

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