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May 31, 2008 [LINK / comment]

Birding around Richmond

I had to be in the capital city of the Old Dominion today, and is my wont, I took advantage of the opportunity to do a little bird watching while I was there. On Friday evening, with beautiful weather, I saw several Ospreys, Great Blue Herons, Kingbirds, and many Tree Swallows around the James River near downtown Richmond. I really envied all those young people who were swimming, tubing, and kayaking in the picturesque rapids smack in the middle of a big city, but I wondered how many of them realize how lucky they were to have those awesome four-foot tall birds only a stone's throw away.

Early on Saturday morning, I reached (after some trial and error searching) my main destination: the Dutch Gap Conservation Area, about ten miles downstream on the James River. Upon arriving, I was chagrined to see that the gate was closed, as the park does open until 8:00 A.M. But I couldn't wait that long, so I "bushwhacked" my way through the woods, in search of my main target species: the Prothonotary Warbler, which has a restricted range and habitat, requiring warm, moist woodlands. (They built their nests in tree cavities, the only warbler to do so.) Jacqueline and I had seen for the first time back in April, 2000. Almost immediately, I heard a steady, monotonic warblerish song which I thought was that bright golden bird, and I turned out to be right. Sure enough, I spotted one before long, and a couple more at close range later on. Eureka! And after eight years! What follows is a complete eBirds report of this morning's adventures, not just the highlights. "(HO)" means that I Heard it Only.

Location: Dutch Gap Boat Landing
Observation date: 5/31/08
Number of species: 18

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2(

Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 01 Jun 2008, 12: 07 AM

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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.


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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