Thursday, April 30, 2015

Good Day for Sparrows

Before today I had five sparrow species in Michigan this year (Tree, Chipping, House, Song and Swamp).  I added four on the south Wastewater properties this morning (Savannah, Field, Vesper and Grasshopper).  One was wearing jewelry by Brian.

This light morph Rough-legged Hawk was still hanging around southwest of the model airplane field.

I could have used the Great Egret (posted below).  Sometimes they're at the Clay Pond, but all I saw there today was this Tree Swallow sitting on the fence.  

I left for the State Game Area and Lane's Landing around 8:00 instead of birding the Wastewater north of Apple.  There were 38 species up there, but nothing new for the year (maybe because it was still cold).  Barred Owl called and Wilson's Snipe winnowed at SGA; Sora laughed at Lane's Landing.

Also laughing, I imagine, are Feller, Charlie, Ken and the rest of the gang when they find out that today's sparrows finally put me over 100 Michigan species for this year.  Not that any of them are counting.

April 30 Email:

I saw this Great Egret today at the Wastewater Treatment Plant.
- John Poindexter

Sora and Bat at Nature Preserve Wednesday

April 29 Email:

There was a Sora at the Muskegon Lake Nature Preserve today, but I couldn't get a photo of him.  This Little Brown Bat was located by a third grade classroom at MLNP.

- Carol Cooper

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Wednesday Birds at the Wastewater

April 29 Email:

took a few photos at the Wastewater early this morning.  Greater Yellowlegs, Upland Sandpiper and what I think is a Spotted Sandpiper.  
Brad Heath

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Sunday Birds at the Wastewater

April 28 Email:

Good Morning, here are a few shots from Sunday @ MWW. - Terra Berry

Terra, thanks for the photos (Tree Swallows, Eastern Meadowlark, Upland Sandpiper, Snowy Owl).  It seems about time for that owl to be heading north.  - Ric

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Purple Finch Invasion

At 6:00 this evening four Purple Finches (3 male; 1 female) appeared on our backyard feeder.  These photos were taken through our back window; by the time I got outside, the birds were gone.

- Ric

Friday, April 24, 2015

Godwit Replaces Avocets at Wastewater Today

Marc Miedema planned to bird all day.  I accompanied him from 6:15 until 11:40 from Lane's Landing (34 species) to the State Game Area headquarters (38 species).

Highlights at Lane's included an American Bittern (not the one above; see sidebar) "thunder-pumping" as it peeked over the grass tops, Virginia Rail, Sora, Pied-billed Grebe, American Coot, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, and a pair of Great Horned Owls whooting at each other at 8:45 a.m.! and several Blue-winged Teal.

At SGA we heard what sounded like a Common Loon calling from the "snipe field" west of the headquarters.  A Wilson's Snipe winnowed over the south end of that field.  We also saw Brown Thrasher, Cedar Waxwing, Hermit Thrush, and at least three Red-tailed Hawks.  

Marc continued on to the Wastewater while I went home and found Terra Berry's email including several photos from yesterday at the Wastewater including this Horned Grebe and American Avocet:

Finally, at 3:15 Feller DeWitt phoned to report a Marbled Godwit in the same aeration lagoon that the American Avocets had been in yesterday.  He said the avocets were gone.  I don't know if he and Marc saw each other out there.

- Ric

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Avocets and Solitary Sandpiper at Wastewater

April 23 Email:

I saw 6 American Avocets & 1 Solitary Sandpiper at the Wastewater today.

- James Fyfe

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Avocet Photos on Wednesday

April 22 Email:

I was at Wastewater today and was able to find the American Avocets that Feller saw yesterday. There were eight of them around noon on Wednesday in the western most drawn down aeration cell.  This was a life bird for me.  Pretty exciting, and what a beautiful bird.

- Travis Dewys

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Avocets at the Wastewater Tuesday Afternoon

Feller DeWitt just phoned to report five American Avocets in the drawn-down aeration lagoon this afternoon at the Wastewater.  Also several Bonaparte's Gulls and Ruddy Ducks.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Egyptian Geese at Wastewater Saturday

April 19 Email:

Hi Ric,
Mary Poort and I saw these two Egyptian Geese in the grassy cells at Wastewater on Saturday.  As I understand, they are considered escapees and not countable.  However, still cool to see!  Do you know if anyone has seen these around the area before?  Feel free to post this on the nature club's website if you think it's of interest.
Marc Miedema

Occasionally domestic geese show up on the lagoons at the Wastewater.  Several years ago there was one that brought many comments from people seeing it for the first time.  Some of the domestic geese are shown here:

Yours aren't included, but I still suspect that they came from a nearby farm.  Yes, they're interesting, no matter where they came from, and especially if from Egypt!  - Ric

Saturday, April 4, 2015

MLNP - The Usual Suspects

I walked around the Muskegon Lake Nature Preserve this chilly morning hoping for a new year bird but finding only the usual suspects.  Of the 22 species recorded, a Brown Creeper was probably "best".  There were still several American Tree Sparrows on the property. - Ric