Friday, October 7, 2005

Fall migrants, plus Glossy Ibis

After the cold front came through late Thursday night I had expected a big influx of birds at Magee Marsh this morning (Friday 10/7) but it didn't seem to have materialized -- numbers were actually a bit lower than what I had seen in a brief visit on Wednesday 10/5. In particular, numbers of White-throated Sparrows were lower, and I saw fewer Blackpoll Warblers and Black-throated Green Warblers. But of course, even a slow day at Magee beats a good day at most of the places where I've lived. There was a good selection of what I think of as "mid-autumn birds," with multiple Rusty Blackbirds, Winter Wrens, Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers, Golden-crowned Kinglets, White-crowned Sparrows, and Lincoln's Sparrows. I saw a few Hermit Thrushes, and more Gray-cheeked Thrushes (3) than Swainson's Thrushes (1) -- that's a small sample size, obviously, but it reverses the situation from earlier in the fall, when Swainson's is typically more numerous. Swamp Sparrow numbers seemed higher than they had been earlier in the week. Diurnal migrants like flickers, robins, and grackles were all numerous, but I couldn't tell how many of these birds were actually on the move. There were still a lot of Tree Swallows overhead, but no Cave Swallows.

Along the entrance road to Magee, the Plegadis (dark) ibis mentioned earlier by Doug Overacker was still there Wednesday and today, just west of the road near the second pulloff. I agree with Doug that it looks like a winter adult Glossy Ibis.

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