American Golden Plovers and Bald Eagle – a nice morning to bird…

I started off my morning by cruising down Broughton Rd north of 25 mi and came upon a couple of American Golden Plovers… There was a huge flock of Horned Larks north of 27mi near Broughton that took flight when a Coopers Hawk flew over… I estimate 70 birds in the flock…

At Stony Creek Osprey Trail I had Magnolia and Orange-crowned Warblers and at East Lake trail there was nothing special… Still had a couple Eastern Towhees and Field Sparrows hanging around…. There was a very nice looking Adult Bald Eagle feeding on a deer carcass at Baypointe Beach… that was a surprise… I show a few pics out my window…

American Golden Plover

American Golden Plover

American Golden Plover

American Golden Plover

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle in flight

Bald Eagle in flight

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

Stilt Sandpiper and Buff-breasted Sandpiper – 18 1/2 mi Sterling Heights

I was coming home from work tonight and stuck in traffic when I got a facebook message from Erik Weyhrauch.. He asked me if I had gotten a Stilt Sandpiper yet this year.. I was only 15 minutes a way and when I pulled up Erik was watching it move thru the wet area in a field of cleared land. I glassed the bird right away and one I saw it I grabbed the camera. Erik told me that he also had a Buff-breasted Sandpiper being chased by a Killdeer but it was gone now… We observed the Stilt for a bit from about 30 yards away when it took flight and began to get chased by another Sandpiper… As it made its way in front of us, I noticed that the Buff-breasted was chasing the Stilt… It was awesome… They both landed in front of Erik and I and we watched them for awhile until the Buff-breasted took off and was gone… We were joined by Kevin Rysiewski, Tom Heatley and David Boon. They could not relocate the Buff-breasted, but on the way home I got a call from Kevin that it had indeed returned…. Very glad everyone got to see it.. We also found an American Pipit there.

Thanks again Erik for the message!!!

Buff-breasted Sandpiper

Buff-breasted Sandpiper

Stilt Sandpiper

Stilt Sandpiper

Stilt Sandpiper

Stilt Sandpiper

Black-bellied Plover – Lk St. Clair Metropark

I started off the day at the wet area at 18 1/2 mi Rd…. I went looking for the Stilt that was reported there a couple days ago… No luck today… Just the usual Lesser Yellowlegs, Pectoral Sandpipers and there were a couple of least Sandpipers… I headed to LSCMP and got to see Allen Chartier band a Mourning Warbler… The woods were crawling with warblers today and I saw many Blackpolls, Black-throated Blue, Blackburnian, Wilson’s, Bay-breasted, American Redstarts, Common Yellowthroat and a Magnolia Warbler…. There were several Red-eyed Vireo in the park and lots of Emp flycatcher including one Yellow-bellied… On the Beach there were Semipalmated Sandpipers, 1 Baird’s Sandpiper, Sanderling and a surprise Black-bellied Plover in Winter Plumage… its black axillary patch clearly visible when it lifted its wings…

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

 

Blurry shot of a Blackburnian Warbler

Blurry shot of a Blackburnian Warbler

Blackpoll Warbler - one of many of the yellow footed birds that were in the park today

Blackpoll Warbler – one of many of the yellow footed birds that were in the park today

Common Green Darner

baby Northern Watersnake on the path... it was only about 4 inches long

baby Northern Watersnake on the path… it was only about 4 inches long

LSCMP – Hummingbirds Galore…

I saw at least 10 Ruby-throated Hummingbirds at Lk St. Clair Metropark today…. they are going crazy over the Jewelweed…. I also found 4 Swainson’s Thrush on the Meadowloop trail and a couple of juvenile Common Gallinule in the South Marsh… I saw a Common Yellowthroat and a couple of warblers way up that I did not ID, but after I left I heard from Brandon that he and Brian Mcgee had a nice wave with Blackpoll, Magnolia, Black-thr Blue, Nashville and even a Connecticut… Brian also had a Yellow-bellied Flycatcher…  Regardless of my lackluster day of birding after work… I still found some cool things in nature I got to document with my camera…..

Cardinal Flower

Cardinal Flower

Common Gallinule

Common Gallinule

Common Gallinule

Common Gallinule

Lanced-tipped Darner

Lanced-tipped Darner

Lanced-tipped Darner

Lanced-tipped Darner

Green Heron - Peek a boo

Green Heron – Peek a boo

Ruby-throated Hummingbird feeding on Jewelweed

Ruby-throated Hummingbird feeding on Jewelweed

Ruby-throated Hummingbird feeding on Jewelweed Ruby Silver Spotted Skipper

18 1/2 Mile Rd – Shorebirds

After work I stopped by the wet area on 18 1/2 mile rd in Sterling Heights to look for shorebirds… The Baird’s Sandpiper was still present as well as were the several semipalmated Sandpipers. There were 5 Lesser Yellowlegs and 5 Pectoral Sandpipers today. 2 Solitary Sandpipers were still going back and forth between the two wet areas as well… I was visited by the owner of the property who inquired what I was doing walking in his muddy field… After explaining to him about shorebirds and migration and how they were using his area as a rest stop on the way to South America, he was impressed and told me that it was ok to continue birding… He was a nice guy.

Lesser Yellowlegs

Lesser Yellowlegs

Pectoral Sandpiper

Pectoral Sandpiper

Pectoral Sandpiper

Pectoral Sandpiper

Solitary Sandpiper

Solitary Sandpiper

Lesser Yellowlegs

Lesser Yellowlegs