My morning birding plans fell through, so I returned to the National Arboretum this afternoon to do a little birding before the day ended. Today seemed even warmer than yesterday. That impression may have been caused by the mosquito bites I received, and the large weevil that landed on my shoulder. With the warm temperatures, many people were in the park; I rarely see the arboretum that crowded. I covered a few areas of the gardens that I had skipped yesterday.
I had only one real area of busy bird activity, and that was on one of the trails on the R St. hill. It began with the sounds of kinglets, which soon developed into sightings of kinglets flitting from branch to branch. Then Carolina chickadees moved in, followed by a noisy white-breasted nuthatch. Both ruby-crowned and golden-crowned kinglets were present; I was able to watch one ruby-crowned kinglet pick things off the trunk of the tree it was perched upon. To my surprise, a black-throated blue warbler appeared in the mix; I found it gleaning from the leaves of a small white oak. At least one eastern phoebe was in the same area. The whole ensemble presented a lesson in varied foraging techniques.
Elsewhere, I saw three eastern bluebirds in the state tree grove, and a sharp-shinned hawk struggling against the wind over fern valley.
BIRDS SEEN: 21
Black-throated Blue Warbler