Thursday, February 7, 2013

Prévost, February 5, 2013

Sound of silence

Fox highway
Cold, but glorious
Best birding strategy? Sit and wait.
Joey crossing thin ice using a sketchy log

Eyes front, ears back

Common Raven Corvus corax- BRONK!
Confiding Black-capped Chickadee Poecile atricapillus
Equally confiding White-breasted Nuthatch Sitta carolinensis
Living the dream 'up north'
 I spent a chilly two days up north at a friend's 'house in the woods'. We went out for a bird walk in a quiet valley and quickly got wrapped up in a mixed bird wave made up of inquisitive Black-capped Chickadees, White-breasted Nuthatch, and a Downy Woodpecker. We also spotted several Red-breasted Nuthatch and Mourning Doves.
  As we entered the woods we heard a strange birdsong, one I couldn’t place my finger on. It sounded like perhaps a singing finch. More proof of my woefully poor Canadian birding skills. I’m always trying to compare Canadian birds to Korean birds, which I know a lot better! The eternal expat.
  Mammal action came in the form of a ghostly Red Fox, and that was a real treat – it froze when it sensed us, then silently vanished up a hill. Judging from the criss-crossed highways of fox tracks in the area, this valley was downtown Fox City.
  We later saw a bronking Common Raven winging past overhead, at one point perhaps chasing another raven or raptor behind the treeline. I asked my friend about Common Redpolls, and although we didn’t see any on the 5th, he has seen them around his house this winter.
  In other news, one person got back to me about the 'Redpoll confusion' (thanks Mark Dennis), and it looks to be a Common Redpoll.
  I’m still daydreaming about spending the entire spring birding Korea’s Yellow Sea islands. There has been some great vagrant action in Korea lately, with national first sightings of Bufflehead, Bearded Vulture/Lammergeier (possible national first), and Black-winged Kite coming in the past month.

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