Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Philadelphia Vireo - back to Ft DeSoto

Friday April 29th

Returned to Ft DeSoto for a third try in April at sighting any spring migrants.  The weather held potential for some numbers to make land-fall here. But alas, some good sightings were made, but the numbers were very low.  And those good sightings required some work.

Black-throated Green Warbler
Black-throated Green Warbler
Arrived about 9:00 am and ran into several disappointed birders.  After checking a couple of locations I ran into John Mangold and the birding poet, Jeff Hooks. Just before running into these guys I had found a cluster of birds in an area which proved to be a hot spot for the day. Had a Palm Warbler, a flock of about ten Indigo Buntings, a Yellow Warbler and an unidentified thrush. Earlier John, Jeff, Ron Smith and another birder named Tom had great views of a pair of male golden-winged warblers there. So I joined with John and Jeff to try and relocate the golden-wings. Would have been a lifer for me, but we did get great looks at a couple of Black-throated Green Warblers, an Eastern Wood-pewee,  more Indigo Buntings, a Prairie Warbler and a female Blackpoll Warbler. 
We split up about eleven o'clock and I returned to the mulberry trees near the pier. I had checked it out earlier and had not seen anything.  On my return to this spot, I sat and waited for any activity that is usually centered around the water feature. Almost immediatelly had several birds come in to get a drink. Started with a female Rose-breasted Grosbeak, then more Indigo Buntings, a female Hooded Warbler, a FOS Eastern Kingbird, a rarely seen Philadelphia Vireo - Lifer!! and a very large raccoon.  Even had a White Ibis and a Laughing Gull come for a drink. The Nanday Parakeets were also noisy visitors to the area as well. 
Link to photo by Jeff Hooks on his blog of a Philadelphia Vireo he photographed on a later date at Ft DeSoto.
Had to head for home by 2:00  when I noted a Gray Kingbird and a lone Brownheaded Cowbird on the wires. An earlier check of the Teirra Verde ponds still had very small numbers of Lesser Scaups, Redheads, Pied-billed Grebes and a lone male Ruddy Duck. And  even earlier, on the drive up to St Peterburg, I checked the campsite road along the south shore of Webb Lake at Babcock-Webb in Charlotte County. Not to much was found but for a very out-of-place juvenile Snail Kite seen sitting on a snag.  Over all it was a good day.

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