Thursday, July 17, 2014

Birding the "Old Jennings Farm"

Charlie DeWitt's reply to my Comment under his July 11 post below led me this morning to the end of Bossett Road north of Bailey Road, a section of the State Game Area Charlie called the "Old Jennings Farm".  Again I was searching for Bobolinks, and again I struck out.  But what a beautiful place to bird!  Thanks, Charlie!

It's not just a turnaround at the end of the road.  There's maybe a square mile of open field, some farmed, some grassy, sprinkled with individual trees, small copses of trees, hedgerows and edges.  I had it to myself from 7:00-9:10.  As I was leaving, I passed a man driving in with three hunting dogs in his truck (reminiscent of Lane's Landing).  The 33 bird species I found are listed below.

These fledglings (Eastern Bluebird and Eastern Towhee) were in the trees along the southern edge of the property where I parked my car. 

An Eastern Kingbird with its white tail band nearly worn off patrolled the hedges north of the Bossett dead end.

A male Indigo Bunting sang from the top of a tree northeast of the hay field.

This Cedar Waxwing perched atop a tree just north of the bunting.

Field Sparrows were the species of the day singing incessantly.  The Yellow-billed Cuckoo was calling from just north of the hay field.

- Ric

SGA Old Jennings Farm, Muskegon, US-MI
Jul 17, 2014 7:00 AM - 9:10 AM
Protocol: Traveling
1.5 mile(s)
Comments:    Looking for Charlie's Bobolinks
33 species

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)  1
Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo)  1
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)  1
Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)  1
Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)  3
Yellow-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus)  1
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  2
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)  1
Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis phoebe)  1
Eastern Kingbird (Tyrannus tyrannus)  1
Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)  1
American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)  3
Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)  2
Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)  6
Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor)  3
Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis)  2   Plus fledglings
Veery (Catharus fuscescens)  1
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  2
Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)  6
Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum)  1
Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)  3
Ovenbird (Seiurus aurocapilla)  1
Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas)  2
Yellow Warbler (Setophaga petechia)  2
Eastern Towhee (Pipilo erythrophthalmus)  2   Plus fledglings
Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla)  5
Vesper Sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus)  1
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)  2
Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)  2
Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea)  2
Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)  4
Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)  1
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)  3


Charlie DeWitt said...

Ric, I think the Bobolinks that I saw were in the hay field that has been cut. It hadn't been cut when I was there.
Great pictures.
Charlie DeWitt

Ric said...

Too bad for me, but moreso for the bobolinks. There were still several species using the field: a pair of bluebirds, barn and tree swallows, sparrows, blackbirds, a cowbird, doves, and a male kestrel hunting grasshoppers or crickets from the hay bales.