WRENDERINGS The Newsletter of the Harford Bird Club

Volume 17 Number 2

March - April 2004

"Acquainting folks to the wild birds and birding life of Harford County"


Lifetime Service Award: the Fry's
Spring is Calling
In Memoriam
Lending Library
Calendar of Events
Harford Bird Club Field Notes...
Harford Birdlife Jan. 16, 2004 - Mar. 15, 2004
Field Trip Reports
Hide and Seek
2004 Mid-Winter Bird Count Results
FIELD TRIPS March - May 2004

Lifetime Service Award: the Fry's

Jean and Larry Fry have been members of the Bird Club since 1979. They personify the goals of the Club. They are expert birders and work to promote conservation of bird life. They know how things function in the Club and what to do in any situation. They served as officers for many years. They lead field trips year after year. They have educated the youth of Harford County about birds and the environment. They have worked on countless committees, given numerous presentations and always have their fingers on the pulse of the organization. Jean has been a frequent contributor to the newsletter and has served for many years as the MOS Scholarship Chair Person. They have given so generously of their time and talents, it is only fitting that we honor our long time members and friends for their outstanding service to the Club before they move away to the shore. Therefore, A Lifetime Service Award was "bestowed upon Jean and Larry Fry with grateful appreciation for their outstanding service and dedication to the Club over many years, as officers, trip leaders, teachers and friends."

We also presented Jean and Larry with a pair of Vincenti Bufflehead decoys. Several members toasted and roasted the couple with amusing anecdotes from memorable birding trips. Everyone will be sorry to see them leave. Jean Wheeler

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Spring is Calling

We survived another winter in Maryland! We escaped heavy snows, and the cold snaps didn't seem so long this year. We will remember the winter of 2004 as the year of the Pine Siskins. Now there is that hint of warmth in the air. The sun is brighter and daffodils are sprouting. As I write this at the middle of March, robins and Red-winged Blackbirds are singing! Large V-formations of Canada Geese are high in the sky winging northward. Timber doodles are doing their thing. Spring is here. Warbler migration is not long off. Get ready for the best spring birding by coming to the next dinner/meeting.

Our speaker for the Friday May 7 dinner meeting is Pete Webb from the Baltimore County Chapter of MOS. Pete is presenting Identifying Spring Warblers by Sight and Song. What a great way to refresh your memory of these spring singers and their songs.

If you missed last meeting you missed a great one. Dave Ziolkowski's Nature talk was superb. He had some great slides of birds, reptiles, flowers and plants and he provided his own sound effects, mimicking owls, frogs and snakes. Jean Wheeler

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The Harford Bird Club annual awards were presented at the March meeting. Congratulations to our awardees:

Volunteer of the Year - Phil Powers. Phil has been a member of the Club since 1996. He has been leading bird trips; he assists with banding at Harford Glen and teaches the students about the wonder of birds. Phil also leads trips for Anita Leight Estuary Center. He is a very enthusiastic birder and has given generously to the club.

Rookie of the Year - Colleen Webster. Colleen is an Associate Professor of English at Harford Community College. Colleen's enthusiasm for the natural world and her ability to write about it has developed into a passion for identifying birds and learning about their habits and life cycles. She joined the club in 2003. Colleen has also been awarded a scholarship to the Maine Audubon Natural History camp.

Rookie of the Year- Mike Burchett. Mike is one of "Spike's kids". In his first year of birding he listed over 250 species including a Yellow-headed Blackbird on his first Christmas Bird Count. Mike tells me that the Yellow-headed Blackbird "could have been what started this fascination of mine that has turned into quite an obsession".

Bird of the Year - Pair of Nesting Pied-billed Grebes. The first pair recorded in the county. "The Club extends a heartfelt thank you to Swan Harbor Farm. The Farm's habitat preservation made it possible." Accepting the award for Swan Harbor was John Gallo a landscaping engineer who is an avid birder. Jean Wheeler

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In Memoriam

William A. Koch, III, died on December 13, 2003 at the Brethren Retirement Community in New Oxford, Pa. at the age of 86. He had been a member of the Harford Bird Club since 1986. Mr. Koch was born in Chicago and was a resident of Aberdeen for more than fifty years.

He graduated from Wright Junior College in Chicago and the University of Florida. He started his career in the Chicago Ordinance District in 1942, served three years in the Army Rocket Research Division on Spesutie Island at APG, and then worked for 22 years as a mechanical engineer and civilian researcher in the Wind Tunnel Laboratories of the Ballistic Research Laboratories before going to the Technical Evaluation Command (TECOM). He retired from the Facilities Division, Logistics Directorate of the Army at APG in 1984.

Mr. Koch was a volunteer at Steppingstone Museum and also served on the board of Harford Hospice. Before his move in 2000 to Brethren Retirement Community, he was an active member of many historic preservation and environmental organizations in the area. He made a contribution to the bird club to be used toward its birdwatching brochure and also donated the Audubon Society's Guide to the Birds of America, a set of five videocassettes to aid in bird identification.

He is survived by three daughters: Kathlynne K. Sullivan and her husband, C.F. Sullivan, of New Carrollton, Md.; Stella Meredith Koch and her husband, David Kinney, of Great Falls, Va.; and Christina Mabel Koch and her husband, Wayne Island, of Riviera, Md. He is also survived by two grandchildren, Meghan Sullivan and Caitlin Sullivan of New Carrollton, Md. He was predeceased by his wife, Stella Koch.

Services were held on December 20, 2003, at the Churchville Presbyterian Church. Interment was in the church cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Harford Hospice, 800 Corporate Drive, Suite G, White Marsh, Md. 21236. Jean Fry

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Lending Library

The Harford Bird Club is developing a lending library of field guides and books covering occurrence and distribution data that can be loaned to members of the club. Bill Collins has volunteered to head this project. The club would appreciate all members to consider making books available for this purpose, which will be of value to all members of the club who travel. If you are willing to make your books available to members of the Harford Bird Club please contact Bill Collins either by phone 410-879-1380 or E-Mail bmjc@iximd.com. Books will be retained by the owner and Bill will be act as a coordinator between the owner and borrower. Our only restriction is that this service will be for Harford Bird Club members only.

Books currently available cover the following areas in the United States: Alaska; Phoenix, AZ; Southern California; Monterey, CA; San Francisco Bay Area; Hawaii; Minnesota; Vermont; Washington; and Wisconsin.

Areas outside of the United States are: The West Indies; Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands; The Bahama's and Turks and Caicos; Mexico; Panama; Costa Rica; Colombia; Ecuador; Venezuela; The Tropical Pacific; United Kingdom; Ireland; Europe; The Middle East; South-East Asia; The Philippines; and Kenya and Northern Tanzania;

The first books have been lent to the complete satisfaction of both the lender and borrower. Bill Collins

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Calendar of Events

April 22 Earth Day
May 7 May Dinner Meeting
May 8 May Count
May 16 Deadline - Harford Birdlife
May 23 Deadline - Wrenderings
June 11 - 14 MOS Conference 2004
July 16 Summer Social
September 11 Picnic at Broad Creek

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Harford Bird Club Field Notes...

Welcome New Members - The Harford Bird Club would like to extend a warm welcome to our newest members:

The Anthony family
Garry Lang
Sarah Davis
Russell W. Kovach
Colleen Reynolds (junior)

State Scholarship Person Needed - I have served as the state scholarship chairperson for six years and would like to find a replacement. Dr. Mildred Gebhard served in this capacity for over twenty years; Isa Sieracki held the position for about five years, so it has traditionally been a Harford County person who has performed these duties. The president, Paul Zucker, has not indicated that anyone has stepped forward from elsewhere in the state. I have a well-organized box of files and can give lots of support and information to a successor. If you are interested, please contact Jean Fry at ffryjl@aol.com or 410-452-8539 for details. Jean Fry

Special Invite: Glen Meadows - Members of the Harford Bird Club are invited to the Glen Meadows Retirement Community for a spring bird walk on Tuesday, May 11, 2004, at 8:30 a.m. Larry and Jean Fry have again volunteered to lead this trip. At Glen Meadows, there are fields, woods, ponds and streams which have previously provided us with sights and sounds of 42 species. Everyone is invited for lunch at the end of the walk. Come, join us for a pleasant morning! For directions call me at (410-817-4814). Jean Williams

Earth Day - Volunteer opportunities may still be available. Contact Debby Stewart at (410-879-2364).

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Image of a Wren over outline of Harford County
Harford Birdlife
Jan. 16, 2004 - Mar. 15, 2004
by Dave Webb

During the first three weeks of the period, bitter cold temperatures settled in and froze over nearly every slow tributary and inland pond. Few waterfowl, herons or kingfishers were found in the county during this time. However, moderate temperatures resumed by mid-February, prompting both the first northbound flights of overwintering species and the first returning breeders. For example, CS reported the first displays of American Woodcock on Feb. 20 at the Edgewood Area of APG, and flushed 4 birds there the next day. About a week later MW found 3 "timberdoodles" at Aldino; dW reported 4 at Level on Mar. 5; and PP saw a single bird displaying at Gunpowder SP on Mar. 13. Wood Ducks made their first appearance on Mar. 5 with a pair at Harford Glen (RK), and a flock of 7 were at Gunpowder SP on Mar. 15 (PP). Mar. 7 Marked the arrival of both Tree Swallows (2, RC, Swan Harbor) and Eastern Phoebe (1, DB, Street). Osprey returned on Mar. 9, with a pair seen already tending to a nest in Belcamp (GRP).

The most remarkable migration accounts of this period are those of Snow Geese. Canadian wildlife officials have documented the tripling of Lesser Snow Goose populations in the last 20 years, so it is understandable that many local birders saw northbound flocks, including some numbering in the thousands. MW got the ball rolling when she saw a flock of about 50 Snows over Webster on Feb. 10. Shortly afterward, flocks ranging from 200-600 birds were seen over Susquehanna SP (LE, Feb. 18), Conowingo Dam (MJ, Feb. 20), and even downtown Aberdeen (DW, Feb. 21). High counts of approximately 2500 and 1500 birds flew over Pylesville on Feb. 21 and 24, respectively (JLF). Flock sizes waned thereafter, with dW finding 150 over I-95 Exit 89 on Mar. 7, JG noting 3 at Swan Harbor a day later, and RK spotting 25 over Havre de Grace on Mar. 14.

High hopes for a fallout of open-field birds during the snows of January and February were never met. Only one Snow Bunting at the Bradenbaugh Flats (DK, Feb.. 8), and the lone American Pipit sighting came from APG-EA (CS, Feb. 21). On a positive note, on Jan. 30 JLF discovered an "exultation" of 75 Horned Larks along Highland Road.

In other Harford Birdlife news ….

Grebes & Cormorant: The lone Horned Grebe report came on Feb. 21 with 2 birds seen on the Gunpowder River (DW).

Meanwhile, Lapidum Landing provided the only Pied-billed Grebe sightings, with single birds found on Jan. 18 (RC) and Mar. 10 (CS). On this latter date, CS also found the first Double-crested Cormorant, again at Lapidum.

Waterfowl: Besides Snow Geese, migrating Tundra Swans were readily seen on the eastern side of the county after mid-February. Flocks of 200-275 swans were seen flying over Conowingo Dam (MJ, Feb. 20), on the Bush River (JG, Feb. 29), over Mariner Point (DZ & RK, Mar. 7), and at APG-EA (CS, Mar. 15). Evening formations of swans flew above Pylesville on Mar. 11 (JLF), and over Mariner Point on each of the next three nights (RK). Fourteen Mute Swans in the Spesutie Narrows (DW, Jan. 21) exemplifies this species' northward expansion in the Chesapeake.

Like any long-distance migrant, Canada Geese need to rest and refuel, as did the flock estimated at 2000 crammed around Pylesville's tiny Lake Mitten on Feb. 25 (JLF). JH photographed a rare Greater White-fronted Goose near Concord Cove on Feb. 20.

Swan Harbor Farm laid claim to peak counts of the following ducks: 8 Gadwall (RC, Feb. 29), 40 Northern Pintail (JG, Mar. 4), and 25 American Wigeon and 75 Green-winged Teal (RC, Mar. 7). Two Northern Shovelers seen at Perryman (RC, Feb. 29), and 26 American Black Ducks at a Prospect farm pond (DW & LE, Jan. 23) rounded out high counts for dabblers. Other noteworthy sightings included 14 pintails migrating with a flock of 100 Snow Geese over Havre de Grace (RK, Feb. 29), a single shoveler on Lake Mitten (a first for that location - JLF, Mar. 7), and a lovelorn drake wigeon persistently calling for a mate among several thousand Lesser Scaup on the Gunpowder R. (DW, Feb. 21).

High counts for diving ducks included 30 Ring-necked Ducks at Lake Mitten (JLF, Mar. 8-9), 4500 Lesser Scaup and 2500 Common Mergansers on the Gunpowder River (CS, Feb. 21), and 25 Bufflehead on the Susquehanna Flats (DW, Feb. 21). Only 2 Canvasbacks and 5 Red-breasted Mergansers were reported, both from the Gunpowder River on Feb. 21 (DW). During the extreme cold of Feb. 5, JLF found 5 Common Mergansers well inland, on Broad Creek at Heaps School Road.

Vultures & Raptors: LE found high counts of 65 Turkey Vultures and 10 Black Vultures roosting together on Feb. 18 near Deer Creek Estates. Active Bald Eagle aeries were found at Swan Harbor (JG) and at two Joppatowne locations - Mariner Point and Gunpowder SP (PP). The greatest number of eagles recorded was 10 along the Gunpowder River at APG-EA (CS, Feb. 20). Two Northern Harriers hunting at Phillips Airfield (DW, Jan. 26), and a single flying over Tydings Marina (CS, Jan. 22) were the only of this species reported. JG was lucky enough to see each of our three falcon species hunting smaller birds at Swan Harbor: American Kestrel versus European Starling (Jan. 27), Merlin versus Dark-eyed Junco (Feb. 2), and Peregrine Falcon versus Northern Flicker (Mar. 4) - although the starling and junco lived to see another day, the flicker was not as fortunate. "Backyard" accipiters included a Cooper's Hawk (pursuing a Pileated Woodpecker!!!) and a Sharp-shinned Hawk in Pylesville (JLF, Feb. 7), and another "Coop" at Glen Elyn (MJ, Jan. 20). Elsewhere, JC spotted a Sharpy over Harford Mall on Feb. 11, and PP saw a Cooper's in Gunpowder SP on Mar. 15. Red-shouldered Hawks began their breeding season quite early in Bright Oaks, when on Jan. 21 LD spotted a pair copulating in his backyard. Another pair began nest building in Webster in early February (dW), one of which was seen carrying away a squirrel on Feb. 10 (MW). JC reported seeing a pair of Red-tailed Hawks at John Carroll HS, appropriately enough, on Valentine's Day.

Shorebirds, Gamebirds, Gulls & Owls: Life as a shorebird is tough when the ground is frozen, so it is no wonder that only one Killdeer (LE, Jan. 23, Aldino) and one Wilson's Snipe (MJ, Jan. 27, APG-EA) were reported early in the period. However by March, both species had returned to Swan Harbor in small numbers (JG, Mar. 4). DW was surprised to see a flock of 11 Wild Turkeys along Woodrest Creek on Jan. 30. The only report of gulls came from CS, who found 100 Bonaparte's Gulls at Lapidum Landing (Mar. 10); and DB noted the lone owl, a Barred Owl calling on Mar. 1 in Street.

Woodpeckers & Kingfisher: The now-famous Red-headed Woodpecker of APG-EA continued to be seen on occasion by CS (Jan. 22 & Feb. 21) and dW (Feb. 28), both noting that its hood was molting into the brilliant red, adult plumage. LE found a flock of 15 Northern Flickers at Broad Creek Scout Camp on Jan.. 23 feeding on poison ivy berries. Backyard sightings of Pileated Woodpeckers came from Street (single, DB, Jan. 30), Pylesville (single, JLF, Feb. 29) and Creswell (pair, RC, Feb. 29), while backyard Yellow-bellied Sapsucker pairs were found on Jan. 26 in both Pylesville (JLF) and Bright Oaks (LD). Belted Kingfishers are typically found as single birds or in pairs, so JLF's report of 3 of them at Broad Creek by Heaps School Road on Feb. 13 is quite unusual.

Nuthatches & Creeper: Red-breasted Nuthatches were thinly scattered across the northeastern side of the county. LE had a pair visit his home near Susquehanna SP nearly throughout, while singles were discovered at Pylesville (JLF, Jan. 16 & Feb. 22), Broad Creek Scout Camp (LE, Jan. 23), Loch Leven (DW, Feb. 22), and Webster (DW, Mar. 13). LS found 3 White-breasted Nuthatches feeding together in her Beckley Estates backyard on Feb. 14. Brown Creepers showed up at backyards in Street (DB, Jan. 30) and Pylesville (JLF, Jan. 16 & Feb. 16).

Thrushes, Mimids & Warblers: High counts for thrushes include the 25 Eastern Bluebirds that CS found at APG-EA perched shoulder-to-shoulder on a cold Jan. 24, and about 100 American Robins worm-hunting on a lawn in Pylesville on a much warmer Mar. 5. A Hermit Thrush in Street frequented DB's birdbath during the early February cold spell. Wintering Gray Catbirds were found on Spesutie Island (DW, Jan. 21) and Susquehanna State Park (LE, Feb. 15). An exciting backyard bird is a Yellow-rumped Warbler. So imagine the thrill when MH (Cooptown, Jan. 20-Jan. 28) and LD (Bright Oaks, Jan. 26) both hosted pairs in their yards.

Sparrows & Blackbirds: A pair of Eastern Towhees visited MH's Cooptown feeder from Jan. 20-28. MW counted an amazing 20 Northern Cardinals at her Webster feeders at dusk on Feb. 13. Beautiful Fox Sparrows came to backyards near Susquehanna SP (LE, Jan. 26), and at Bright Oaks (LD, Feb. 7). High counts for sparrows included 10 Fox (PP, Gunpowder SP, Jan.. 18 & Mar. 15); 7 Swamp (DW, Spesutie Island, Jan. 27); and 3 Savannah, 2 White-crowned and 6 American Tree (RC, Perryman, Feb. 29).

Nobody reported any "megaflocks" of blackbirds, so the high count goes to the 25 Common Grackles that JC had in his Fountain Green backyard on Feb. 7. All Rusty Blackbird sightings came from APG, with DW finding as many 11 birds on Plumb Point on Feb. 6.

Finches: Pine Siskins were reported nearly every day of the period from two locations: JLF in Pylesville were overjoyed to host as many as 25 siskins at their thistle feeders, while DW in Webster had up to 5 each day. One of the Webster siskins flew into a window on Jan. 27, allowing dW to hold it in his hands until the dazed bird recovered and returned to his mates. Purple Finches were widely scattered at feeders across the county - from Glen Elyn (4, MJ, Jan. 20), Joppatowne (2, PP, Jan. 19), Creswell (1, RC, Mar. 14), near Susquehanna SP (4, LE, Jan. 22), and Webster (6, MW, Feb. 14).

And finally, …

… did you ever wonder how Harford waterfowl survive when nearly all bodies of water are covered by ice? Most fly southward in search of milder temperatures and open water. Or if you are like the six Tundra Swans seen off of Spesutie Island on Jan. 27 (DW), you conserve your energy by sitting atop an ice floe, perhaps taking a snooze, and letting the ebb tide take you on a leisure cruise down the Chesapeake Bay shipping channel.

Contributors: Debbie Bowers (DB), Rick Cheicante (RC), Jon Cupp, Sr. (JC), Lynn Davis (LD), Les Eastman (LE), Jean & Larry Fry (JLF), John Gallo (JG), Marjorie Heagy (MH), Jim Hirvonen (JH), Mark Johnson (MJ), Dennis Kirkwood (DK), Russ Kovach (RK), Phil Powers (PP), Glenn Randers-Pehrson (GRP), Lynn Speedie (LS), Chris Starling (CS), Daniel Webb (dW), Dave Webb (DW), Marsha Webb (MW), and Dave Ziolkowski (DZ).

Please email your sightings of the usual and the unusual to porzana@comcast.net, or snailmail them to Dave Webb, 4141 Quail Way, Havre de Grace, 21078. The timeframe for the next column is Mar. 16 thru May 15. Thanks to everyone who contributed to this report!

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Harford Bird Club
Field Trip Reports

Conowingo Gull Watch
January 11: Cold schmold! Despite temperatures in the low '20s, a remarkable 15 people (most of them CMW students) showed up for a gull watch at Conowingo Dam. This was more than the number of birds that showed up -- well, not really, but it seemed that way. Species diversity was quite low. The only gull of note was a single Lesser Black-backed Gull, and the only waterfowl were a few Buffleheads and numerous Common Mergansers. Passerines and woodpeckers, typically in ample supply along the Mason- Dixon trail, were also scarce. Everyone got great views of an adult Bald Eagle soaring at eye level less than 100 yards away. Our neatest sighting was of a Great Blue Heron that landed atop the swift, deep river currents, then immediately snatched a large fish and flew back with its prey to Rowland Island.

Fort Howard, North Pt SP, etc.
February 14: Twenty persons joined us on Valentine's Day in pursuit of our love-birds! Temperatures ranged from 35 to 45 degrees. We saw a total of 38 species, which is low for this trip. Most of the rivers in the area were still frozen so that diminished the waterfowl sightings. Birds in the field and forest areas were seemingly inactive. Open waters on the Patapsco at Fort Howard yielded Canvasback, Bufflehead, Greater and Lesser Scaup, and Common Merganser. When we looked out onto the Chesapeake Bay from North Point State Park, there were large rafts of scaup in the distance. Water at Marshy Point was frozen, so that defeated our chances of seeing Tundra Swans and Redheads. A Brown Creeper was spotted near the feeders at the visitor center. Devastation from Isabel is still evident at Miller Island. Our usual lunch spot is being rebuilt. A highlight of the trip was a spontaneous visit to the new North Point State Park visitor center led by 80-year-old Steve Takos, a long-time volunteer at the park, for whom the visitor center has been named. He delighted us with the history of the area and Bay Shore Park. Jean Fry

Swan Harbor
March 6: We embarked from the parking lot in a drizzling rain with flocks of Canada Geese flying at many levels and also large flocks of large white birds only at greater distances -close scrutiny revealed that some of them were Snow Geese, but many more were Tundra Swans! There were six of us, two adults and four high school students interested in satisfying requirements for school projects. My thanks to Dave Oktavec for helping to keep them all interested with information about birding and by finding some interesting birds in spite of the poor weather conditions - rain and fog, especially dense over the water. Some good small birds included - Song, Field, Savannah, and Fox Sparrows; titmouse, chickadee, & Golden-crowned Kinglet: Downy and Red-bellied Woodpeckers; thrushes - robin and Wood Thrush. Near the water we had frequent noisy fly-bys by a busy kingfisher, and near the end of the walk after the rain stopped and the fog lifted, the always majestic and deliberate fly-over by a Great Blue Heron. We were also rewarded then with a circling mature Bald Eagle, initially misidentified as a vulture. Other birds spotted were crow, starling, mockingbird, Mallard, and Ring-billed Gulls. Lynn Davis

Woodcock Watch
March 10: As the sun was setting March 10 a group of about 25 woodcock enthusiasts gathered in Aberdeen to make a trek to the wide open fields of the Perryman peninsula. Land owned by Constellation Energy is providing habitat for the American Woodcock, and the group first heard the faint "pee-ent" calls of the birds, and then watched as several of them made an almost vertical flight directly overhead into the darkening sky. Cloud cover made the sky too dark, however, to see the birds descend in their famous spiraling display. This trip was repeated March 17, with five attending, with similar results. Debbie Bowers

Loch Raven
March 14: We should call this trip "SPIKE' S", because seventeen of the twenty birders [were] STUDENTS and PARENTS. They were looking to achieve that magic number of fifty birds. We were surprised to find very few ducks (Wood Duck, Hooded Merganser, American Wigeon and American Coot). Our prize land birds included early Eastern Phoebe, Brown Creeper, and Pine Warbler who wouldn't leave the trail. I hope out of the thirty-two species , the young birders added a few. Phil Powers

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Hide and Seek

Two birds
in the bushes
hide from me
I hear them
- Debbie Bowers

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2004 Mid-Winter
Bird Count Results

January 28: This year's Mid Winter Count greeted us with cold weather (around 5-10deg.F to start), which may help to explain why fewer leaders participated. Twelve ADC map blocks were covered, mostly on the eastern and southern end of the county. The western, central, and northern part of the county was not accounted for. Eighteen participants counted 10,589 individuals of 85 species. That is about 31% fewer birds and 7 fewer species than last year. A light-phase Rough-legged Hawk and the only Kestrel of the count were found by the team of Webb and Procell. They also found four Fox Sparrows and 5 Rusty Blackbirds. Spike Updegrove and the C. Milton Wright students found the only Snipe and had a look at a Pileated Woodpecker. The team of Larry and Jean Fry had 33 species and the only Pine Siskins of the count. Russ Kovacs had 6 out of seven woodpecker species and the only White-crowned Sparrows for the count. Les Eastman had the only Coots (60) and 150 Canvasbacks. Our esteemed editor counted 247 Bufflehead and had 2 Chipping Sparrows (he also fixed a problem with my spreadsheet; thanks, Rick!). Phil Powers found four Fox Sparrows and observed two Bald Eagles on nest. Diedra DeRoia had Bald Eagle, Northern Harrier, and Sharp-shinned Hawk and eight American Black Duck.

The group with the highest species was the team of Webb and Procell with 54, followed by Kovacs with 48 and Cheicante with 45 species.

My thanks go out to all of the observers who counted and shared their results. The participants include Rick Cheicante, Diedra DeRoia, Les Eastman, Larry and Jean Fry, Russ Kovacs, Phil Powers, Suzanne Procell, David Webb, Spike Updegrove and a team of CMW students: Dan Kogut, Brittany Fronzak, Brett Mattox, Eva Weese, Elyssa Bailey, Todd Anderson, Nick Alexander, and Jessica Minacapelli. Mark Johnson

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March - May 2004

Sunday, April 4: Harford Glen: Let leader Phil Powers guide you on a trip through the marshes, fields, and forests of this perennial club favorite. Always a productive location, Blue-winged Teal, Wood Duck, Wilson's Snipe, and kinglets are likely with Palm Warbler a distinct possibility. Meet at the mansion house at 8:00 a.m. Contact Phil at birdsinmd@prodigy.net for more information.

Thursday, April 15: Mariner Point Park: Join Tom Congersky on a visit to this favored club destination. Nestled between the Gunpowder Marsh and the slow waters of Foster Branch, the varied habitats and paved trails of this park make for good birding and a comfortable walk. Meet near the pavilion at the back parking lot at 7:30 a.m. Contact Tom at jnjtcon@erols.com for details.

Sunday, April 18: Jerusalem Mill: Take a leisurely stroll around this historic area and along the Little Gunpowder River from the Mill to the Jerico Covered Bridge. Meet Phil Powers in hopes of finding Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Palm Warbler, and Louisiana Waterthrush. Meet at the mill (off Jerusalem Rd.) at 7:00 a.m. Contact Phil at birdsinmd@prodigy.net for details.

Saturday, April 24: Susquehanna State Park: Celebrate the birthday of John James Audubon by enjoying the early spring wildflowers and migrant songbirds that this great naturalist made so well known. The birdlist will likely include Blue-headed Vireo, Yellow-throated Warbler, and Louisiana Waterthrush while wildflower enthusiasts can expect to see blooming Trout Lily, trillium, Dutchman's Breeches, Cut-leaf Toothwort and Jack-in-the-Pulpit. Meet leader Rick Cheicante at the Rock Run Mill at 7:00 a.m. for best looks at songbirds; late risers and wildflower "creepers" can meet there at 8:30 a.m. for a birding/natural history walk. For further information, contact (410-803-2712).

Sunday, April 25: Eden Mill: This 57-acre park borders on Deer Creek and consists of hills and valleys, undeveloped woodland, and early successional fields. This trip combines a bird banding demonstration by Mark Johnson followed and a bird walk with leader Debbie Bowers. Species list will likely include Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Blue-headed Vireo, and a good mix of early warblers. Meet at the Mill House at 7:00 a.m. Contact bowerspub@hotmail.com for more details.

Saturday, May 8: May Count: If you would like to participate, contact Mark Johnson at (410-692-5978) or Mark.Johnson@apg.amedd.army.mil.

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Please return to Eileen Nack, 8 Cresmont Drive, Aberdeen MD 21001 by Friday April 30, 2004. __________ Number of adults ( at $11.00 each ) __________ Number of children 12 and under ( at $7.00 each ) Please make checks payable to Harford County MOS. _______________________________ Print your name(s) Include address and phone number if you would like transportation to the meeting. _______________________________ _______________________________ _______________________________ TEL:___________________________

Please send any comments to Les Eastman.
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