The wind, cold out of the N, was brisk…almost blustery, when I set out to do a census.The cold temperatures (-1) had a lot of birds hunkered down, except for maybe the Song Sparrows which seem to be in the throes of setting out territories and are singing from everywhere (it seems). The river was strangely empty – only a couple of Canada Geese and a lone Mallard. I think most waterfowl have moved through. I’d like to be wrong about this but…I think most have moved on. And the forest part of the census trail was very quiet (I had been hoping for an early Yellow-rumped Warbler).
I encountered at least 3 Eastern Tufted Titmice – par for the course, even a bit low. I get sort of a chuckle out of the folks that drive all the way to Ruthven to see them, hang out dutifully at the feeders with cameras poised, and then often go away disappointed. They just need to spend a little more time (and patience) – I don’t think there’s been a day yet this year when I haven’t seen them.
There was a pair of Eastern Bluebirds checking out the boxes on the river flats. The two Tree Swallows that were around were maybe too cold to put up much of a rucus. But when the vanguard of swallows returns, these bluebirds will have a hard time hanging onto their box.
On the day I saw only 31 species and not a lot of individuals. We’re between “pulses” I think.