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May, 2012 Bird Sightings at Fermilab

Author: Peter Kasper

April June
May 27May 25

Sunday, May 27

It was starting to warm up already at 6:30 this morning and was into the 80's by 10:00. This did not seem to affect the bird activity much. There were some interesting birds to be had in several locations. The Alder Flycatcher was again located along the Sparrow Hedge. Also found in this area were several Bell's Vireos while an American Kestrel was seen carrying food toward the area's nest box. Outside the northwest corner of the Big Woods we found an Orchard Oriole and a Ruby-throated Hummingbird that Peter has been watching now for several weeks. The Hummingbird is most likely breeding in the area. In a field along East Wilson Rd. there were several Horned Larks and Vesper Sparrows (Peter appeared to flush one of the sparrows from a nest). We found many more Savannah Sparrows than I was able to find on my last visit. Some of the other birds seen were a Great Egret (not too frequent around the Lab lately), Wood Ducks, Chimney Swifts, Willow Flycatchers (they're everywhere), Marsh Wrens (in good numbers), several Cedar Waxwings (this is only the second week this year they have been recorded), and several Yellow Warblers. Dave

Friday, May 25

A pre-breeding season survey brought me to Fermi this morning for the first time in over a month. It appears I will miss most of the eastern migrants this spring if this morning is any indication. Well represented grassland birds were Dickcissel, Bobolink, and Eastern Meadowlark. Not so well represented were Savannah Sparrow, Henslow's Sparrow (only one heard in Main Injector area) and Grasshopper Sparrow (none contacted). The female Osprey was on the nest and later the male was seen heading in that area. Male Kestrels were in close proximity to the nest boxes east of the Sparrow Hedge and at the end of Swenson Road. These are good indicators of their continued success. Some other birds of note were a Cooper's Hawk (along Swenson Rd.), Cedar Waxwings (in the Sparrow Hedge area), an Orchard Oriole (Main Ring Woods) and the bird of the day was an Alder Flycatcher (in the Sparrow Hedge). Dave

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