Journal archives for April 2016

April 21, 2016

Lone Rock Adventure

With a chem test looming on the horizon, I decided to take a study/birding break down at Lone Rock Point. It was a bright, sunny day when I arrived and Spring was in the air. The walk from the parking lot to the beach uncovered lots of arriving spring migrants. Phoebes were calling everywhere, and it was hard to miss the rambling song of the Ruby-crowned Kinglet. As I entered a section of white and red pine forest along the trail, I heard a trill that sounded quite like a Chipping Sparrow, but a little slower, a little investigation revealed a bright yellow ball of energy way up in a red pine and a sure sign of spring, my first warbler of the year! I spent several minutes watching the Pine Warbler flit back and forth between the trees, and not two minutes after I moved on I paused again to watch the aerial antics of two young Tree Swallows.
After arriving at the shoreline, I did a quick scan of the lake which revealed a drake Mallard, a couple of Caspian Terns, and a Common Loon. After finding a suitably comfortable rock, I began studying as chickadees flocked around me, picking off the hundreds of emerging midges and flies that coated the lakeshore. About half an hour in, I was startled by a sudden rush of air that sounded like a rock being thrown a few feet from my ear. I watched as a gray bird shot straight and fast as a bullet under the thrust fault and around the end of the point. My first thought was Merlin, as I've had them at this location before, but the size and speed of the bird convinced me that I had just had an extremely close encounter with a Peregrine Falcon. What started as an impromptu study trip turned into a birding adventure filled with close encounters and spring migrants.

Posted on April 21, 2016 03:32 by nsharp nsharp | 34 observations | 1 comment | Leave a comment

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