At lunch today (4/25), shortly after grumbling about the sparse warbler situation so far this spring, we saw our first-of-year Indigo Bunting show up in the shingle oak in front of our house.

 

Yesterday (Tuesday, 4/24), I heard our first-of-year Great-crested Flycatcher. It vocalized a couple of times in the mid-afternoon, then shut up.

 

Also, deeper in our woods, we saw two Ovenbirds on Saturday afternoon (4/21), not singing. Early this afternoon, on a quick woods walk in basically the same location, we heard Ovenbird song from two directions.

 

Our motivation for the woods walk was to check on a Red-shouldered Hawk nest. We found the nest last year, when one juvenile successfully fledged. There’s been a pair active around the same nest area for the last few weeks and it appears that the nest has been spruced up. We had some difficulty getting a clear view into the nest through the trees, but it appears that incubation is underway.

 

The only warblers we’ve had here so far this year are Yellow-rumped, Louisiana Waterthrush, Northern Parula, and Ovenbird. Still waiting on others that typically nest at our farm (Black-and-white, Blue Winged, Kentucky) as well as all the other migrants. The food supply might be improving, as Gnatcatchers and Ruby-crowned Kinglets seemed to be feeding actively in the oak trees where the buds are swelling.

 

Joanna & Eric Reuter

Chert Hollow Farm

Boone County, MO


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