Saturday, May 11, 2013

Recently at CyFair

This week has been fairly quiet for birds on the CyFair campus, except for normal residents, such as Great Egret, Northern Mockingbird, Northern Cardinal, Great-tailed Grackle, White-winged and Mourning Doves and Black-bellied Whistling Duck (below).

Early in the week I had occasional looks at Gray Catbirds, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks and Baltimore Orioles, and then a female Scarlet Tanager decided to hang out for a couple of days at the entrance to the nature trail.

On the campus, as everywhere in our area, Eastern Wood-pewees have been common sights.

Except for Common Yellowthroats, warblers have been few and far between. However, a couple of Bay-breasted Warblers turned up on Tuesday. 

They were joined by a Magnolia Warbler.

While I missed getting a photo of a Blue-headed Vireo, I was luckier with this Philadelphia Vireo.

Our martin house is full of nesting Purple Martins and it seems there is never a time when the sky near the nature trail is empty of these birds.

The campus now has several Western Kingbirds, and I am waiting to see if one pair nests in the roof of the basketball court, as has happened every year since about 2004. In the meantime, I always enjoy seeing these beautiful birds at different places around the campus. 

Incidentally, we have also had a couple of interesting flyovers. On Thursday morning I spotted a Crested Caracara, a bird we see only rarely at CyFair, although the species is very common a few miles west of the college. The same afternoon I was surprised to see an Osprey flying above the northern retention pond, a fish grasped in its talons. We had an Osprey around the campus all winter but I assumed it had moved on. It will be interesting to see how long it stays. It will also be interesting to see how long Cedar Waxwings remain: The flock that once numbered over 1,000 birds is now down to a couple of dozen.

No comments: