Monday, May 31, 2010

A day on the Piedmont

Yesterday I felt like a change of pace and drove NW through Carroll Co. and into the Northern part of Frederick Co. in search of upland birds. The farm country up there is very picturesque, with small freshwater ponds amongst the grazing fields, and small streams and river valleys lined with riparian vegetation cutting through the crop fields. The avian fauna is quite distinct from that on the coastal plain, with American Kestrels perched on phonelines, pairs of Red-tailed Hawks soaring over their territories, Warbling Vireos singing along the streams, and Bobolinks displaying over the hay fields. Best birds of the day were a Red-headed Woodpecker perched on a utility pole in a field, 3 singing Dickcissels (year bird # 316!) and a Vesper Sparrow perched on a utility line.From the top: Red-tailed Hawk, Dickcissel, and Bobolink.
Some other common roadside birds were
Eastern Kingbird (above) and Barn Swallow (below):

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