Central Virginia 8/16-17/13

All photos are Marshall Faintich

Blue Ridge Parkway 8/16/13

Walt Childs and I started out on the parkway at Reids Gap (mm. 14), and soon saw a Cooper's Hawk perched on a tree, but it flew before I could get any good photos of it. We stopped at Hickory Springs Overlook (mm.12) where we saw 14 more species, including a couple of American Redstarts and a Black & White Warbler, as well as Red-eyed Vireos, Eastern Wood-Pewees, Eastern Towhees, and a very colorful Scarlet Tanager.


American Redstart


Black & White Warbler


Eastern Wood-Pewee


Eastern Wood-Pewee


Male Eastern Towhee


Male Eastern Towhee


Female Eastern Towhee


Scarlet Tanager


Scarlet Tanager

After a brief stop at the Humpback Rocks park and the visitor center, we got off the parkway at Route 610 and headed north to Rockfish Gap. We stopped at one spot where there was a mixed flock of birds, and added another six species to the day's total.


Red-eyed Vireo


Red-eyed Vireo


White-breasted Nuthatch


White-breasted Nuthatch

Augusta County 8/16/13

We then made stops at Lake Shenandoah, Leonard's Pond, and at points along some of the farm fields north of Waynesboro. There wasn't too much to see, and we ended up the day with about 30 species, including a Red-tailed Hawk, a Killdeer, and some Mallards.


Orchard Oriole

Rockfish Valley Trail 8/17/13

Rain had been forecasted for this morning, but the skies were mixed sun and clouds, so I headed over to the trail and arrived a little after 9:00. I started on Glenthorne Loop on the east side of Reids Creek, and soon saw a mixed flock of birds in one of the trees: Carolina Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, Red-eyed Vireos, and a couple of warblers. One of the warblers was a Blackburnian. The other one was tough, as some of the fall warbler plumages are very similar. I thought that the other warbler might have been a female Cerulean, but after a lot of reasearch, I think that it was a drab first fall female Blackburnian Warbler.


Red-eyed Vireo


Red-eyed Vireo


Blackburnian Warbler


Drab first fall female Blackburnian Warbler


Drab first fall female Blackburnian Warbler


Drab first fall female Blackburnian Warbler

An Adult Common Yellowthroat was in the brush near the small pond where they nest each summer, and a bit farther down the trail, I saw a juvenile Common Yellowthroat.


Adult Common Yellowthroat


Juvenile Common Yellowthroat


Juvenile Common Yellowthroat


Juvenile Common Yellowthroat

There were lots of Eastern Wood-Pewees and Indigo Buntings on both sides of Reids Creek.


Eastern Wood-Pewee


Indigo Bunting


Indigo Bunting (juvenile male?)


Indigo Bunting (juvenile female?)


Indigo Bunting (newly fledged?)


Indigo Bunting (newly fledged?)

A Great Blue Heron has, for the past couple of years, spent a lot of time in the fields rather than along the Rockfish River or Reids Creek.


Great Blue Heron


Great Blue Heron

In less than 2 hours, I had 26 species on the trail. A Broad-winged Hawk circled above, and there were lots of swallowtail butterflies.


Carolina Wren


Broad-winged Hawk


Broad-winged Hawk


Swallowtails

This morning's RV Trail list:

Great Blue Heron
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
Broad-winged Hawk
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Northern Flicker
Eastern Wood-Pewee
Eastern Phoebe
Red-eyed Vireo
Blue Jay
American Crow
Barn Swallow
Carolina Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
Carolina Wren
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Eastern Bluebird
Gray Catbird
Northern Mockingbird
Cedar Waxwing
Blackburnian Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
Field Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Indigo Bunting
American Goldfinch



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