Sunday, September 23, 2012

Northern Waterthrush, Nice to See You..

Where have you been all my birding years?  I guess I shouldn't act like I knew I was missing you.  You're one of a handful of warblers I had yet to happen upon but probably the last on my list of priorities.  Still, I've been out with enough serious birders that I'm surprised you're my first.  No offense, but you're rather plain looking, more like a thrush.  I would always flip right past you and stop at the Prothonotary warbler for an awkwardly long time.  Probably because of their super-velvety, yellow, vulnerable-looking head and chest against plain gray wings.  Still, you were interesting to watch as I peered over another more professional-looking photographer.  And you're just making a brief appearance as you're passing through, perhaps down to Eleuthera or Panama.

Now, for some reason I've always been really fond of the Ovenbird even though you guys look very similar...  Maybe I'm more attracted to their white eye ring with contrasting dark head feathers - gives them a more humble, alert, and studious look.   They also don't have your eye stripe - I think that makes you look more stern.  And then of course you're not walking around singing "teacher-teacher-teacher"...  and you don't have a Robert Frost poem named after you.

Ovenbird @ Willowbrook Wildlife Center

Anyway, it was super-cold when I arrived so I'm glad you guys warmed up enough to move about.  Nice seeing you.

Others I met (just migrating through):
Lincoln sparrow, Magnolia warbler, Bay-breasted warbler, Blackpoll warbler

Year-round Residents:
Northern Flicker, Cardinal, Ruby-crowned kinglet, Cooper's Hawk, Black-capped chickadee, Robin

Back for the Winter:
Golden-crowned kinglet, Red-breasted nuthatch

Still here from Summer:
Gray catbird
Lincoln's Sparrow
Northern Flicker