It was cloudy, muggy, and hot when I started out this morning, and by mid-morning, it was partly sunny, muggy, and much hotter! I hiked here in Old Trail and had two objectives. First, I wanted to see if Blue Grosbeaks had returned. They were easy to find last summer south of the golf course pond, but new home construction close to there has changed a lot of the habitat. Second, I wanted to try to find the Empidonax Flycatcher that I saw yesterday, and perhaps hear it sing to determine the species. I ended up with 34 avian species, maybe heard one Blue Grosbeak but am not sure, and did not re-locate or hear the flycatcher.
Female Wood Duck
Male Wood Duck
There was at least one juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk still in the nest, but I couldn't get an unobstucted view of it.
I usually don't bother taking photos of American Goldfinches these days, but this one looked a bit unusual. It is most likely a female, but look at the dark lores and the white leg feathers. I looked at some of my older photos of American Goldfinches. Some of the females had lores that were a little dark, but not as dark as on this bird, and a few of the males had white leg feathers. So I don't think that the one in these photos is a hybrid, but just a variant of the normal plumage.
I saw a Black Ratsnake in one of the bird boxes along the soccer field in Western Park. This is the second this year where I have seen a snake in one of the bird boxes there. I wish that the county would put snake guards on these boxes.