Ten enthusiastic PBC members and a guest met at the home of Jude Pate and Julien McCarthy to bird the edge of Lake Townsend and the surrounding lush forests, utility easements, and neighborhood.
As we struck out, the first sightings included a Bonaparte's Gull passing through in migration and several other expected waterfowl. The close forest yielded a few warblers and other woodland species. The canopy was loaded with American Goldfinches chirping away while the sun brightened the backdrop of new green leaves. The Belted Kingfisher trilled as it zigzagged across a cove of the lake- it’s so nice when a wild creature makes an appearance as predicted! We finally broke out into the vast utility easement where low brush and saplings yielded various indigenous species as well as a gorgeous Indigo Bunting. Along the way we checked one of the Brown- headed Nuthatch project boxes and found that a Carolina Chickadee had deposited four delicate eggs about the size of a small blueberry in a sumptuous, fur-lined, mossy nest. We toured a neighbor’s loop trail but her famous Summer Tanager had yet to arrive, however a male Rufous Sided Towhee put on a great show. As we headed home, an Osprey whistled from above as it was climbing a thermal over Lake Townsend with a fish in its talons.
After dwelling on the deck for our own delicious meal, shared also by several entertaining avian species eating their suet and seeds, we tallied the day’s count at thirty species. We said our goodbyes and decided that perhaps next year we will schedule this new successful format for an early morning start to enhance the count.