.I got to work early yesterday so that I could do a birding walk around the campus. It was worth the effort!
The nature trail area produced most of the normal birds, including several White-winged Doves that, unusually, did not fly away at my approach.
Yellow-rumped Warblers, Orange-crowned Warblers, American Goldfinch and Ruby-crowned Kinglets were busy in the trees, as were Northern Cardinals, Carolina Chickadees, Blue Jays and Northern Mockingbirds. The bird I really wanted to get a good look at was the Hermit Thrush which arrived a few days ago.I got glimpses of it as it scuttled around through the undergrowth. Then suddenly it popped up on a branch and stayed there long enough for me to get a photo. A lovely little bird!
The northern retention pond had our usual three large waders: Great Blue Heron, Great Egret and Snowy Egret.
It also had lots of Eastern Meadowlarks, Killdeer, Mourning Doves and Savannah Sparrows.
At first I thought the southern pond was empty of birds. But then I noticed a small group on the water. Two Canvasbacks were sailing about with several Lesser Scaup, while a Ring-necked Duck was bringing up the rear.
These are the first winter ducks that I've seen on the campus this season. Hopefully more will be joining them in the coming months.
All in all, I saw 27 species in an hour. That's about as good a total as I ever see in a day at work.