Sunday, March 29, 2009


This afternoon, I found the first warblers of the year in my yard. Two Pine Warblers were actively feeding on whatever they could find in the grass.

Other birds I found in the yard include Brown Creeper, Red-winged Blackbird, Field Sparrow, and a fly-over Peregrine Falcon.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Sparrows, Swallows, and Stupid Shadows

As spring nears, sparrows are become increasingly common in the field across from my house. There are lots of Song Sparrows, Dark-eyed Juncos, and White-throated Sparrows. Along with these more common species, there are several Fox, Field, and American Tree Sparrows.

Of course, whenever a sparrow decides to sit out in the open, something has to ruin the photo, like a shadow:

With spring, comes breeding and with breeding comes nest box cleaning. Today, while cleaning out boxes at the Lehigh Gap Nature Center, not only did I find used nests, but several dead Tree Swallows and lots of White-footed Mice (and yes... the mice were VERY alive).

When I came home from the Lehigh Gap, I decided to take a walk around the small pond in my yard. The Spring Peepers (Pseudacris crucifer) were deafening loud, but as usual, incredibly hard to find.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some owls to find...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

first phoebe and Tropicbirds

This morning I had the first Eastern Phoebe of the year in my yard.

Eastern Phoebe landing:

I also made the Tropicbirds World Series of Birding team!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Wood Frogs!

This morning I heard some Wood Frogs (Rana sylvatica) calling, making their usual clucking sound. I followed the sound to a small pond where about 15 of the little buggers were floating on the water and calling.

A pair of Pine Siskins decided to stop at the pond for a drink:

And a Fox Sparrow decided to join the show, although only briefly showing himself:

Before long, the warblers and orioles and tanagers will start returning!

Spring is here!

Although today is the first full day of spring, the thermometer reads 19 degrees F. Despite the frigid temps, Fox Sparrows are becoming increasingly apparent as have butterflies:

Mourning Cloak:

Eastern Comma:

The American Woodcocks in the field across from my house have begun their displaying. Every evening and dawn I heard the characteristic "pzeent" followed by the whistling flight call.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


While spring has yet to officially start, the flowers have been blooming, the birds singing and the butterflies flying. Over the weekend, I found both a Mourning Cloak and a Eastern Comma flying through the woods by my house.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Costa Rica

I haven't posted here for a while, as I was enjoying the jungles of Costa Rica. I spent most of my time at El Zota Biological Station in the Carribean lowlands. March is supposed to be the dry season, but it rained every day we were there. It turns out, the storm was a fifty-year storm. We received a total of around 43" of rain! Despite the rain, I found over 160 species of birds, lots of frogs, some snakes, and an amazing number of butterflies.

I was in Costa Rica with a college class with professors Dr. Master and Dr. LaDuke. As a group, we saw around 180-190 species of birds. Other places we visited was Braulio Carillo National Park and San Jose.

Here are some photos:

Slaty-tailed Trogon:

White-collared Manakin:

Passerini's Tanager:

Rufous-naped Wren: