Red-breasted Nuthatch…. on the lookout…

I saw Brian McGee and his daughter at Stoney Creek Nature Ctr on Saturday… I was looking for a Pine Siskin… We parted ways and later on I got an email from Brian telling me that his daughter and he found Red-breasted Nuthatches on the Nature Ctr Rd by the bridge near before the Osprey trail parking lot… so today I took a quick run by there because I did not have a Red-breasted Nuthatch on my County list for the year yet.. As I drove near the pines beyond the bridge I had my windows down… I did not hear one calling, but I spied a little guy sitting on the very top of a tall pine… I grabbed my binoculars thinking that it was probably a Goldfinch or some other small bird, and then I realized it was the Red-breasted Nuthatch (68) I was looking for… got a quick shot with the camera before the RBNU took off… photo is fuzzy but it made me laugh to think what this Nuthatch was looking at…

 

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Finally a Pine Siskin…..

Birded at Stoney Creek Metropark today… My plan was to start at the Nature Ctr and look for Pine Siskins (66) in the feeder… they have been seen there on a regualar basis, but I have missed them… Not today… it took about 10 minutes and they showed up…. I shot a photo thru the Glass….

Pine Siskin

next I headed for the East lake trails.. these go behind the Osprey trails… years ago it was called the “special nature study area”…. I love this area… not birded often, but really great habitat with a mix of pine, hardwood and thick scrubby area…. This has been the best place in Macomb County IMO to find Ruffed Grouse…. I headed down the ABCD trail… it forks and if you follow the thinner trail to the right that will eventually lead you up into the pines bordering the lake, you may flush a grouse…. before the trail begins to climb there is a thick nasty area… reminds me of Northern Michigan… I walked along the path, and listened for drumming or any other call notes… nothing… after 20 minutes I played a grouse distress call and boom!! a Ruffed Grouse (67) flushed!! I love the sound of a grouse flushing in the woods… There are not many in the park, but they can be found with patience….. all other birds seen were the usuals, although I found 3 Northern Flickers…. thats 6 Flickers since Jan 1…. with the mild winter, they have really been hanging around…..

White-Winged Crossbills at Indian Springs Metropark

I worked in Waterford today, and I got to the office 20 minutes early… so I took the opportunity to take a run over to Indian Springs Metropark to see if the White-Winged Crossbills were hanging around in the Tamarack pines behind the park office… and sure enough they were there…. I only had time to take a few snap shots and jump back into the car… Unfortunatly shooting at birds against a gray sky is not the best for clarity and color, but it was still very cool seeing the birds… as the photos show, they are feeding on the cones in the Tamarack, and they were not shy…

Merlin…. having some lunch…

While driving down Schoenherr today south of 28 mile rd I noticed a hawk sitting on a pole eating some lunch… stopped, pulled out the camera and shot a couple of pics from the car window…. A nice Merlin!!  it never budged and I had to get going, so I posted a couple of the photos from my car window….

Merlin

Merlin

Early Morning before work….

Took a quick run to Stoney Creek Metropark at day break for a trip around the lake… Most of it is frozen but the open area near the North Dam had a few Mute Swans, 20 Mallards and 4 Ring-necked Duck (64)… They were weary of me and never got too close for a good photo… While I was standing there a Bald Eagle flew over… its very cool that there presence on the lake is “no big deal” anymore (the eagles)… I see them on a regular basis during the winter…. At the nature center I took a quick look at the feeders… still don’t have Pine Sisken for the year…. as I was leaving a Pileated Woodpecker (65) called loudly from the Habitat trail… I could hear him hammering away on a tree…. I didn’t have time to photograph him…. work was calling so I took off…. Another day, another time…