Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Bird Photos and an Unusual Warbler

Yesterday afternoon I found a very tardy migrant on my walk around Donaldson Park. It was a first-winter Northern Parula, foraging among the broken chunks of concrete on the riverbank. According to eBird, this is the latest sighting of the species reported from my county; most Northern Parulas are gone by the first week of October. There are other November and December records in New Jersey, but most of those probably come from milder coastal areas. The best explanation I can manage for why this bird was still around is that the fall was relatively warm; it may just not have felt the need to move until the cold snaps of the past couple weeks.

Unfortunately I was not able to manage a clear photo of the warbler. I did photograph two other species though – a Song Sparrow looking at me from the top of a brush pile and a Canada Goose that walked right up to me. The dark splotch on the Song Sparrow's breast was the result of wind ruffling its feathers.