Central Virginia 4/26/15

All photos are Marshall Faintich

Some days turn out better than others for birding. It rained on and off most of yesterday and through the night, and was cloudy most of today. One of the local birders braved the rain yesterday, and had 15 warbler species in Mint Springs Park. Most of the migrating warblers travel at night, and I hoped that they would stay put because of the rain, but I ended up with only five warbler species after birding in three counties.

I started off this morning on the Rockfish Valley Trail here in Nelson County. I ended up with 21 avian species, but only two Common Yellowthroats and one Palm Warbler. I spotted a fox on the trail soon after I got there. There was a large flock of female Red-winged Blackbirds in the trees.


Common Yellowthroat

Palm Warbler

Female and male Eastern Towhees

Gray Catbird

Female Red-winged Blackbirds

I went to Ridgeview Park in Waynesboro (Augusta County) early afternoon, and although it was fairly "birdy," the only warblers I saw there were some Yellow-rumped and a single Black-throated Blue (FOS). I also saw three Chimney Swifts (FOS).

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Black-throated Blue Warbler

Male Eastern Towhee

Male Eastern Towhee

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

Chimney Swift

I went to Mint Springs Park in Crozet (Albemarle County) mid-afternoon. There were quite a few Chipping Sparrows and American Goldfinches near the parking lot, but no warblers, so I hiked up the fire trail there to where it starts to level off, hiked about another half-mile along that section of the trail, and then returned rather than hiking the entire loop of the trail. The only warblers I saw were a few Yellow-rumped and a single American Redstart.

American Redstart

Yellow-rumped Warbler

White-throated Sparrow

I did a quick hike here in Stoney Creek late in the afternoon, and saw only a few birds. Blue-gray Gnatcatchers seem to be everywhere I go this spring - many more than I have seen in previous years.

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

I hiked seven to eight miles today, including the steep hike up the fire trail, and didn't have much to show for it. Oh well, tomorrow is another day!

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