Tuesday and Wednesday Scott Baldinger and I had the pleasure of guiding two visiting birders from Holland around our area, getting them some great life birds and enjoying the opportunity of sharing the Bashakill with birders from afar. Eildert and Julia Beeftink are visiting from Holland for a family wedding in New York City. They added several days to the beginning of their trip to bird the area and get some birds they haven’t had in previous trips. They had a great time with Scott Monday, where he found them a pair of immature PURPLE MARTINS, which I was able to see as well. They then joined me for the afternoon. Today, we started at the Bashakill again, moved on to Gumaer Falls Road, then on to Wolf Brook. We had a great day and got them many of their target species. Highlights at the Bashakill were the assortment of flycatchers, Yellow-billed Cuckoos in several spots, Cerulean and Worm-eating Warblers, Common Gallinule, Broad-winged, Cooper’s and Red-tailed Hawks to name a few. On Gumaer Falls Road, we found that the Ravens have recently fledged and put on a nice show for us. The Acadian Flycatchers, Blue-headed Vireos and one of their main target birds BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER all cooperated nicely. Wolf Brook also provided some targets like BLACK-THROATED BLUE WARBLER, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, INDIGO BUNTING, Chestnut-sided and Prairie Warblers and many Eastern Towhees made for a great afternoon. We then walked down to the Neversink River from the Katrina Falls access. It was a great walk with many nice birds. A real treat was when Eildert spotted a tiny baby PORCUPINE crossing the forest floor. It climbed a tree and showed very well. This was the youngest Porcupine I can remember seeing. It was a great end to the afternoon. Tonight…..out for more birds….owls, Whip-poor-wills etc.
Follow up: Night birding wasn’t so great. We did manage to get the American Bittern on Haven Road, but no owls called at all. We finally go Whip-poor-will on Pine Kill Road. It was great birding with Eildert and Julia who say they will be back for more birds in the future.