Bashakill – another great morning in spite of a major migration out.

The Eastern Screech-owl is back after its usual five month summer vacation.

The Eastern Screech-owl is back after its usual five month summer vacation.


Back to the Bashakill in hopes of a big migration as evidenced by radar last night. There was a major move, OUT! Hundreds of blackbirds yesterday were down to a dozen today. Sparrow numbers dropped by 75%. Warblers were down to three Yellow-rumped. A single Ruby-crowned Kinglet was it. On the other hand, raptors continued in good numbers. Our little friend the EASTERN SCREECH-OWL is back in his usual hole. I haven’t seen it since early May, just like the previous year. Fox Sparrows increased a bit, with 5 seen. The bird of the day was undoubtedly a juvenile RED-HEADED WOODPECKER on the Nature Trail! I heard a call that was unfamiliar to me. It repeated several times, and I thought it might have been a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, but it wasn’t right. Fortunately, it continued to call and I had almost tracked it down when if flew from one tree to another. As soon as I saw the wings I knew what I had. This is a rare bird in Sullivan County and I’ve only had it a handful of times (the last being an adult that spent 3 weeks at my home in 2011). This is the first time I’ve had a juvenile in the county and my first not in the month of May. When the bird stopped to sun itself for a moment I took the time to make a couple of calls, but unfortunately no one could come. I went back to following the now moved bird to try for more pics, but I only got a glimpse of it in the Oaks near the sandpit, then it disappeared. The extensive Oak Grove there is still fully leaved and I could not find the bird again. Though my pics aren’t great, they are diagnostic of a juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker!
Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker just off the boardwalk at the Nature Trail.

Juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker just off the boardwalk at the Nature Trail.


This active young bird took a moment to sun itself, but wouldn't turn for the camera.

This active young bird took a moment to sun itself, but wouldn’t turn for the camera.

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