What kind of work am I doing at Tall Timbers you ask? I'm nest searching for and banding Brown-headed Nuthatches. They are already excavating cavities in snags to be used as nests and are actively guarding them from Bluebirds and other cavity nesters.
Orange-crowned Warblers winter here and are seen daily.
It seems like you can't stop anywhere on our nuthatch plots without hearing an Eastern Towhee. They are thick in these woods and aren't too shy!
On my first weekend (Feb 9 & 10), I picked up my friend Craig Bateman in Gainesville and drove to the South Skyway Fishing Pier where the Black-legged Kittiwakes had been seen. We didn't really know where to go, ended up walking around aimlessly for a bit, walked under a bridge and bumped into a feeding Razorbill!
We figured out where the actual fishing pier was, and on our way back to our car we saw some birders fixed on a floating gull. There sat a dying Black-legged Kittiwake. It appeared as though it would only last a few more hours, and that stretching it. No one saw it the next day.
|Black-legged Kittiwake... not looking so well|
We spent the night at Craig's place in Gainesville and birded Paynes Prairie Preserve in the morning. It was pretty quiet, but we found an obliging Ash-throated Flycatcher. Myiarchus flycatchers can be difficult to identify, but this one fits the profile of Ash-throated nicely. Smallish bill, drab underparts, rufous tail... and it was calling.
There are some other, poor quality photos of common birds in the flickr gallery, so if you are bored feel free to check it out. I have a few more pictures that will be accompanied by an iPhone voice recording (Least Flycatcher and Brown-crested Flycatcher) if I can figure out how to upload them here. I have pictures of Fish Crow but my voice recording seems to have been deleted, so I'll work on getting another picture and recording soon.
I'm heading down to STA-5 near Clewiston, FL tomorrow (2/15) after work. The gates open at 830am on Saturday. The seven hour one-way trip is going to be rough, but the birding will make up for it. Purple Swamphen, here I come!
I'll also take this time to remind you of the pledge page here. The birds of Hawaii would really appreciate it!