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Stebbins Refuge Morning Walk

Stebbins Refuge

April 27, 2022

Al & Lois Richardson

Though the end of April, the weather felt more like early March. Ten birders braved the chill and gusting winds to look for arriving migrants. Highlights of the morning were: Yellow-rumped Warblers - everywhere - high in the treetops and foraging on the ground.  A Northern Waterthrush announced it had arrived with lusty song, as did the Gray Catbirds.  The famous Stebbins Eastern Screech Owl was in residence, always a treat to see.  A Yellow Warbler sang, and a bright yellow spot revealed where he sat high up in a tree.  Chimney Swifts joined Tree Swallows and Barn Swallows hawking insects over the ponds.  A Piliated Woodpecker flew from tree to tree on the Natti Trail, where later a House Wren revealed its presence down by the river.  As we looped back on the West Road Trail, we added Palm Warblers, more Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, and Ruby-crowned Kinglets.  A Rusty Blackbird doing its squeeky rusty hinge call got our attention and then flew down almost in front of us.  We were nearly back to our starting point when a Brown Thrasher was spotted high up in a tree.  The trip came to a conclusion with a drive along Pondside Road to view the Mute Swan, Great Blue Heron, Bald Eagle, and Osprey.  All at, or on, a nest.  There were 43 species on the trip list.