Central Virginia, 4/1-2/16

All photos are Marshall Faintich

April 1

I went for a short hike here in Stoney Creek, and only saw a few birds. Some of the Carolina Chickadees wre gathering nesting materials.

Carolina Chickadee

Carolina Chickadee

White-breasted Nuthatch

April 2

It was supposed to be summy today, and then the forecast changed to light rain until 9 a.m., and then cloudy all morning changing to sunny by 11 a.m., but there was off and on light rain until 1 p.m. Walt Childs and I headed over to Warren Ferry along the James River. Multiple warbler species, including Yellow-throated and Prothonotary can be seen there starting sometime in April each year, and we hoped that the warm spring weather might bring warblers there a bit early. It was drizzling when we arrived, and we saw a few species such as Yellow-rumped Warbler, White-breasted Nuthatch, Northern Cardinal, American Goldfinch, Carolina Chickadee, Mallard, and Canada Goose, but we decided to go to Totier Creek Park to see what might be there while the weather cleared. Not much there either - just a few Chickadees and Song Sparrows, but after a while the rain stopped. We headed back to Warren Ferry, and it started raining again. But we did see a small flock of Purple Finches and my first-of-year (for Virginia) Blue-gray Gnatcatcher. We looked down river and saw a huge Bald Eagle nest, but there wasn't any way for us to get close to it.

Song Sparrow

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Purple Finch

Double-crested Cormorant

Bald Eagle nest

We head south along the James River Road, and stopped a few places but didn't see much.

Red-tailed Hawk

Tiger Swallowtails

Our last stop was at the James River WMA. This place should be good for birding, but has never been good when we were there. We saw a couple of sparrows and an "odd duck."

Wooden Duck

When I got home, there was a Northern Flicker in my back yard. Waiting for the spring warblers to come through . . .

Northern Flicker

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