Downy Woodpecker, Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary, Natick, MA
A fantastic morning at Broadmoor today full of lovely sights and interesting sounds. First sight--ring-necked ducks on the pond (with green-winged teals, wood ducks, hooded mergansers). They stopped and slowly broke the smooth surface of the water, diving.
Sight 2: The work of some ambitious beavers, left half done. I hope they survived the flood OK.
Sight 3: Bluebirds (caught him in mid-chortle).
They were staking out house boxes.
Along with recently returned tree swallows!
But getting some nasty competition from the house sparrows, who have already claimed a few boxes and are aggressively fighting off intruders.
Oh and here's a tiny brown snake. First of the year. Hope you don't mind.
Recordings: Note--I find this time of year a little confusing (of course, by May I'm a basket case). 1) Fox Sparrow, by the bird feeders. He's got that slide-whistle thing going. 2) Dark-eyed Junco, in the orchard. This is a rock solid ID (I saw him singing). If I heard the same thing in April I would immediately think chipping sparrow or pine warbler. 3) Brown Creeper, in the woods near the (flooded) entrance to Quacking Frog Trail. I have never before heard a brown creeper sing in the wild, only on recordings, so this is provisional. But I can't think of anything else it could be. (I immediately thought warbler but that seems impossible and my only other thought is a very short-winded winter wren). This recording repeats the same snippet three times. 4) Brown Creeper, on Indian Brook Trail. Here the chickadees provide clutter, but if you concentrate you can hear what sounds like a wheeze and a couple of very sweet notes repeated several times. Once again, this ID is provisional.