Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Oakland County Birding

I have been birding a lot the last few days but haven't had time to post. Migration is in full swing now and several unusual birds showed up. On Friday Karl Overman found an Orchard Oriole at Heritage Park. As I did not have one on my Heritage park list I tried chasing it later in the afternoon but didn't see it. I did see a Wild Turkey though which was a first for Farmington Hills for me. Then on Saturday Mike Mencotti found a Prairie Warbler up at Pontiac Lake SRA. He called me at about 11:45 and I quickly wolfed down my lunch and drove off. I was there an hour later but of course the Prairie Warbler which had been singing almost constantly an hour before had disappeared. My luck started to change on Sunday when I found Black-throated Blue, Blue-winged and Hooded Warblers at Heritage Park. Yesterday I found my first Magnolia and Nashville Warblers of the year in my backyard as well as my first Chimney Swift. Today I found what is one of the rarest birds in Oakland County that I have found myself. I saw a Prothonotary Warbler at Robert Long Park. I was just heading back down the trail when I heard a warbler song that I did not recognize. At first I did not think that this was that big of a deal as I am still a bit rusty on my warbler calls but all of a sudden, a brilliant Prothonotary Warbler popped out of the bushes. This is definitely one of the coolest warblers I have seen but sadly my camera has been acting up lately and I was not able to get a good picture. Here is one of the pictures I took.
I also found a Snapping Turtle on one of the trails.
I have a lot more birding planned for the next few weeks so hopefully I will find many more cool migrants.

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