Friday, May 21, 2010

Red-headed Woodpecker

Yellow-headed Blackbird

Blackburnian Warbler
Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Magnolia Warbler

Highlights: Red-headed Woodpecker & Yellow-headed Blackbird

The current weather pattern has really stalled things out the last couple days, but late season migrants have just started picking up and there have been some interesting recent sightings. On the 21st there was a nice flight of songbirds including several first arrival. Even though activity dropped off the last two days, there have been a couple more first arrivals. Recent sightings in the woods include; Chimney Swift, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Red-bellied and Red-headed Woodpeckers, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Yellow-bellied Flycatcher, Gray Catbird, Blackpoll & Canada Warblers, Scarlet Tanager, Indigo Bunting, Bobolink, Yellow-headed Blackbird, and Red Crossbill.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Blackburnian Warbler

Cape May Warbler

American Redstart

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Swamp Sparrow

Highlights: Swainson's Hawk, Connecticut Warbler

We are currently at what is really a great time of the year at the Point. Although some things are slowing down, we're in the period when hawks, waterbirds, and songbirds can be active. The songbirds have begun picking up and recent sightings in the woods include; Chimney Swift, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Least Flycatcher, Blue-headed & Philadelphia Vireos, Bank Swallow, Scarlet Tanager, Clay-colored Sparrow, and Rose-breasted & Evening Grosbeaks. The warblers have begun arriving in earnest with 17 species the last two days including; Tennessee, Orange-crowned, Cape May, Black-throated Blue, Blackburnian, Connecticut, and Wilson's. We want to thank Jason Bojczyk, who is currently down state for the Purple Gallinule, for volunteering his time. In addition to giving the counters days off, he has been giving education programs in the Owl's Roost and updating the sightings blog.

Monday, May 10, 2010


Cape May Warbler

Sharp-shinned Hawk
killing a Blue Jay

Orange-crowned Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler with a fly

Pine Warbler

With the warm weather and clear skies, activity at the waterbird count, hawk count, and woods picked up significantly. Diversity in the woods was good today, with the first nice mix of warblers.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 66

Highlights: Ruffed Grouse, American Woodcock, Bonaparte's Gulls, Caspian Tern, Blue-headed Vireos, Bank Swallows, many Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, many American Pipits, Lincoln's Sparrow, Snow Bunting, and Evening Grosbeaks.

Warbler species(10): Orange-crowned-4, Nashville-8, Yellow-2, Magnolia-1, Cape May-3, Yellow-rumped-93, Black-throated Green-8, Pine-1, Palm-2, and Black-and-white-1.

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Lincoln's Sparrow

Clear skies but cold temperatures led to some species seen several days ago returning, but not the diversity expected at this time of year. Tomorrow could be a decent variety of species again, with perhaps some new migrants(and warblers)! Two woodcock were seen walking along one of the trails in the woods, which is always nice to see.

Number of species at the point today (including counts): 37

Highlights: Piping Plover, American Woodcock, Blue-headed Vireo, Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Hermit Thrush, Lincoln's Sparrow and Snow Bunting.

Warbler species(1): Yellow-rumped-3

Saturday, May 8, 2010


It was a very cold and windy day which led to the worst total number of species at the point in weeks. The predicted snow didn't accumulate though.

Total number of species(including counts): 21

Highlight: White-crowned Sparrows.

Warbler species(1): Yellow-rumped-3

Friday, May 7, 2010


Blue Jays and Hairy Woodpecker

Still no new passerine migrants and the woods were dead. Tomorrow doesn't look good either-up to 5 inches of snow overnight and 20 mph winds throughout the day from the North. Highlight of the day was 3 Piping Plovers.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 36

Highlights: Piping Plovers, American Pipit, and White-crowned Sparrows.

Warbler species(1): Yellow-rumped-4


Strong winds in an unfavorable direction led to a lack of birds at the counts and virtually no activity in the woods.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 33

Highlights: Bonaparte's Gulls, Glaucous Gull, Cliff Swallow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, and White-crowned Sparrows.

Warbler species(1): Yellow-rumped-6.

Thursday, May 6, 2010


Spruce Grouse

After the early morning rain the sky cleared up a little bit, and the most species in a day this spring were recorded. No new songbirds arrived, but the number of warbler species is back up to 5. The waterbird count had a nice diversity of waterfowl and the hawk count didn't pick up until the end of the count.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 72

Highlights: Ruffed Grouse, Greater Yellowlegs, Caspian Tern, Bank Swallow, Cliff Swallows, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Brown Thrasher, American Pipits, Lincoln's Sparrow, and Lapland Longspur.

Other: David Bell found 9 Willets at the Tahquamenon Rivermouth early in the morning, and they were still seen later in the evening. A Northern Mockingbird was at Vermillion and a Spruce Grouse was at Vermillion Road.

Warbler species(5): Nashville-2, Yellow-rumped-8, Black-throated Green-1, Pine-2, and Palm-2.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Yellow-rumped Warbler

The woods were quiet again today. The overall highlight today was the great loon flight that happened today-see the waterbird blog for more details. Another highlight was an immature Golden Eagle that made a couple of passes over the hawk platform towards the end of the hawk count in perfect lighting.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 56

Highlights: Greater Yellowlegs, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Hermit Thrush, American Pipits, and Evening Grosbeaks.

Warbler species(3): Nashville-1, Yellow-rumped-7, and Black-throated Green-1.


Sunset at the Point

The woods weren't covered that well today and no new migrants were detected. The number of Blue Jays has increased to over 200. The highlight of the day was an American Woodcock seen in the woods.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 50

Highlights: American Woodcock, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Hermit Thrushes, American Pipits, Swamp Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, and Evening Grosbeak.

Warbler species(1): Yellow-rumped-4.

Sunday, May 2, 2010


Blue Jay

The woods were pretty quiet today other than the large flock of Blue Jays with at least 150 birds. Throughout the day the Blue Jays gave perfect imitation calls of both Red-shouldered and Broad-winged Hawks. Towards the end of the hawk count a light morph Swainson's Hawk flew around and even briefly perched.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 58

Rarity: Swainson's Hawk

Highlights: Whip-poor-will, Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, American Pipit, White-crowned Sparrow, and Evening Grosbeak.

Warbler species(3): Nashville-1, Yellow-rumped-4, and Black-throated Green-1.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


Eastern Kingbird

The day began with thick fog around the point and didn't let up until around 12. It was nice to hear Common Loons calling in the fog though. There was visibility, at least partially, all day at the hawk platform and an amazing 2,411 birds were tallied. This included a large kettle of around 1,200 Broad-wingeds way up in the air. Although the woods weren't covered as well as yesterday, there were some new arrivals.

Number of species at the point today(including counts): 60

Highlights: Whip-poor-will, Eastern Kingbird, Cliff Swallow, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Brown Thrasher, American Pipit, Vesper Sparrow, Lincoln's Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrows, and Rusty Blackbirds.

Warbler species(4): Yellow-rumped-10+, Black-throated Green-2, Pine-1, and Palm-1.