July 6 2019 Evening Birding at the Bill Mason Centre with Art Goldsmith

It has been 2 years since our last June walk at the BMC and we noticed significant changes.  The wetland seems to be transitioning into a dryer habitat, the shrubs are filling in areas where we didn’t see as much of them before.  We did not hear one Wilson’s Snipe, where previously they had been plentiful and often posed for photos.  There were no sounds of Bitterns.

We did, however, have 46 bird species during our 2.5 hour walk.  (Thanks to Derek Dunnett for keeping the eBird list for us!)  Some highlights:  There were many Swamp Sparrows, Ovenbirds and Yellow Warblers.  The quarry turned up a Hooded Merganser, 2 Spotted Sandpipers and surprisingly 2 Solitary Sandpipers. (They seem to be a little late moving through this year.) There were 3 Virginia Rails heard, two at very close range and one made an appearance near and on the boardwalk!  At the back end of the trail, 2 Common Nighthawks flew overhead and were very well positioned for all to have a good look.  This was a life bird for several of the participants.

I was pleased to see new birders in the group, hopefully some  will be inspired to try it again.  Thanks to the experienced birders for sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm and especially to Art Goldsmith for leading us.


Looking for the Virginia Rail

Porcupine house!

Arum flower

Looking for Warblers in the forest

Side trip to the old quarry