Saturday 5/24/14

Black-billed Cuckoo at Goose Pond Mountain State Park, 5/24/14.
Black-billed Cuckoo at Goose Pond Mountain State Park, 5/24/14.

GOOSE POND MOUNTAIN STATE PARK

I met Linda Scrima and Maria Loukeris at Goose Pond Mountain State Park early this morning in an effort to beat the rain that was forecasted. It was a gray morning with more birds being heard than seen for most of the trip out on the trail. The way back was another story, however, and we ended up getting some good looks at many of the birds we only heard on the way out. The highlight of the day was undoubtedly the pair of BLACK-BILLED CUCKOOS that showed up right on the trail. I was struggling terribly with the camera all morning for some reason, so I only got so-so shots. It was a life bird for both Linda and Maria, so that was exciting. What started out as a slow morning ended up pretty good, and counting the Northern Mockingbird I saw before Linda and Maria arrived, we totaled 40 species for the day. Here’s my list for the day – Linda and Maria, let me know if I’ve missed anything!

Eastern Towhee, Goose Pond Mountain State Park, 5/24/14.
Eastern Towhee, Goose Pond Mountain State Park, 5/24/14.

Great Blue Heron
Turkey Vulture
Mourning Dove
Yellow-billed Cuckoo
Black-billed Cuckoo
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Pileated Woodpecker
Eastern Wood-Pewee
Willow Flycatcher
Great Crested Flycatcher
Eastern Kingbird
Yellow-throated Vireo
Warbling Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee

Black-billed Cuckoo at Goose Pond Mountain State Park, 5/24/14.
Black-billed Cuckoo at Goose Pond Mountain State Park, 5/24/14.

Carolina Wren
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Wood Thrush
Gray Catbird
Northern Mockingbird
Cedar Waxwing
Ovenbird
Blue-winged Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
American Redstart
Yellow Warbler
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Prairie Warbler
Eastern Towhee
Field Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Indigo Bunting
Red-winged Blackbird
Brown-headed Cowbird
Baltimore Oriole
American Goldfinch

Another highlight of the day was getting great looks at this Chestnut-sided Warbler, located by Maria. I did not get any decent shots of this bird, this was taken
Another highlight of the day was getting great looks at this Chestnut-sided Warbler, located by Maria. Goose Pond Mountain State Park, 5/24/14.  Photo by Linda Scrima. 

WALLKILL RIVER NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE

Last year I could not get a photo of a Great-crested Flycatcher, this year it's a different story. Wallkill River NWR, 5/24/14.
Last year I could not get a photo of a Great-crested Flycatcher, this year it’s a different story. Wallkill River NWR, 5/24/14.

In the evening, I went back out, this time to the Wallkill River NWR, Liberty Loop Trail – mostly in search of shorebirds. I did just alright for shorebirds, locating (3) Semipalmated Plovers, (4) Killdeer, (1) Greater Yellowlegs, (5) Spotted Sandpipers, and (20) smaller shorebirds that I only saw from a distance in flight and I’m not going to venture a guess for:

Any thoughts on the ID of these shorebirds?  Liberty Loop, 5/24/14.
Any thoughts on the ID of these shorebirds? Liberty Loop, 5/24/14.
American Goldfinch showing off at Wallkill River NWR, 5/24/14.
American Goldfinch showing off at Wallkill River NWR, 5/24/14.

As I walked the loop, I saw many of the expected species, including a pair of Yellow-billed Cuckoos in the woods by the back pond. The best moment of the evening, however, was not bird related at all. I had a black bear ran parallel to the trail on the east side of the loop. It was awesome to see and I was lucky enough to get some shots:

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5 thoughts on “Saturday 5/24/14”

  1. Matt,
    Great shots as always. I really like the bear. Since hearing about the bears in my yard last week and your pictures I cringe at the thought that I walked a mile up Pochuk by myself that day. Have to make plans to go with others on some of these walks!!!! For safety sake!!

    Wilma

  2. Matt,
    The shore birds appear to be Semipalmated Sandpiper. I can’t say with absolute certainty, but the stout bills and wing pattern both indicate SPSP. The bills would be longer and more decurved for Least SP. John

    1. Thanks John, I will have to take a look at the wing patterns. I knew you would be excited about the bear, it made my day for sure. Matt

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