Thursday, September 23, 2010

Fruit/Hover-gleaning Vireos

Unfortunately being on vacation last week I missed a big week in birds feeding on Devil's Walkingstick. When I birded Carpenter's Woods today about 90% of the fruit was gone. I'd guess it was more like 60-75% before I left.

Still that didn't stop the feeders. I hadn't yet seen the Red-eyed Vireos that John mentioned. But I saw at least one today, doing what I'd call hover-gleaning. It looks like there is also a type of feeding called fruit/hover-gleaning and that more accurately describes what I saw. The vireo flew up to the fruit, hovered, and quickly grabbed a fruit. I wish I'd seen this well enough or gotten a photo since it would have made for a nice sketch. But no such luck.

Also feeding today was one male Black-throated Blue warbler and at least five American Robins, one of which is pictured at top.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Also in West Virginia

We were in West Virginia last week so I have nothing to add personally about birds feeding on Devil's Walkingstick. We did have a wonderful cabin in the mountains there but we saw 0 birds outside of the cabin, a rude surprise to say the least. There was a Devil's Walkingstick about 100 yards from our cabin but we saw no birds on it. However that means little given that we only say 1 bird within 100 yards of the cabin, a House Wren.

Robin, one of  the neighbors who regularly birds Carpenter's Woods, did report a Wilson's Warbler feeding on DW there while we were gone. One more feeding warbler for the list and an unusual one at that!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

And Some Red-eyed Vireos

I was at Carpentter's Woods for three hours this morning, looking for a predicted fallout that didn't really  seem to happen. There were a few more warblers than usual, especially a Blackburnian, but no fallout. John who birds the woods almost every day and who knows I'm keeping track of Walkingstick feeders mentioned that he found a number of Red-eyed Vireos feeding today.

I also found one Black-throated  Blue and one Veery. So the list is adding up. John mentioned that  he guessed he'd seen all the thrushes feeding and I'd guess the same. The only local thrush  I can't positively remember are Hermit and Gray-cheeked. But Gray-cheeked are fairly rare here. Hermit seems much more likely, unless it doesn't arrive until after all the berries are gone. Something to pay attention to this fall.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

And Some Warblers..............

Well I wish I had a photo of a Black-throated Blue Warbler, or even better a Worm-eating, sitting in the middle of these berries but I don't. As I've mentioned in my other blog warblers don't sit still for long. Photos are difficult and sketches almost impossible.

In any case a 3 hour walk at the Wissahickon yesterday found many Devil's Walkingsticks, all in varying degrees of fruiting. Some were just developing, some ripe as could be, some past their prime and others seemingly dead, the entire fruit head falling completely down. If I have time I may try to more properly document their lifecyle as I view it this year.

Robins were the most plentiful visitor but I also saw my first male Black-throated Blue warbler feeding on them. I believe I also saw a Worm-eating warbler. I only saw this bird for one brief second, then it was gone. I'm pretty sure of my ID but can't be positive. And I can't say for sure he was eating the berries. So this one goes down as a maybe, especially as it's the first Worm-eating I've ever seen in Philadelphia.