After reading Mark Chao's report of his weekend visit to the Summerland Farm preserve, I finished chores and vol. work, packed a lunch and went there for the afternoon. The small yellow Finger Lakes Trail signs on Blackmun Hill Rd. are easy to miss, but I found them thanks to the good directions from the Finger Lakes Land Trust at: https://www.fllt.org/preserves/summerland-farm-preserve/ As Mark wrote: "There is no parking lot at this preserve. The Land Trust recommends trying to park along the southern road shoulder near where the Finger Lakes Trail crosses Blackman Hill Road. On the north side of the road, there's a gravel area that could hold multiple cars, but as I understand it, this seems to be a turnaround for service vehicles and should not be blocked." I turned around and parked on the north side by the entrance to the first woods on the 'white' trail.
Going into the dark, shady, cool woods I immediately heard a Red-eyed Vireo and soon two Ovenbirds, none of which were seen. The easy trail leads to a stone steps over an old farm rock pile and out into the meadow where I immediately heard and started seeing several Bobolinks flying around and singing their joyous song! Some like to perch on the white-tipped trail marking stakes in the freshly mowed trail when they aren't sailing around with their mates or their male colleagues. I counted at least 7 males and 2-3 females. Up the hill a bit, one not only admires the long expanses of tall grass and wildflowers, but the views in all directions areabsolutely wonderful! If you keep your eyes off the few buildings way in the distance, you could feel like you were in a little wilderness! Barn Swallows zoomed around, too. I did not hear any sparrows as Mark did. I know I (who just turned 76) can hear their faint calls because on Sunday on Holden Rd. in Lansing I got good looks at 2 Savannah Sparrows sitting far apart on utility wires, both singing their faint songs. I walked slowly thru the meadow to enjoy it all on this lovely day, then found a rock pile to sit on for lunch at the other side where the trail goes into the second woods. Imagine having your lunch in the semi-shaded, dappled sunlight, while listening to Bobolinks nearby! Meanwhile, right behind me in the woods were more Red-eyed Vireos and a loudly singing Ovenbird. After eating, I went into the second woods where the trail goes gradually downhill. I heard at least 2 Wood Thrushes. I went as far down as a posted sign and a green mark painted on a tree at the start of a ravine before turning back. Part way down this hill I also heard 2-3 Ovenbirds and then saw 2 of the Ovenbirds and one was particularly cooperative. He sat on nearby branches in plain view uttering his little chewk call and I got great looks at him there and on the ground in the Virginia Creeper leaves. I also saw a Phoebe and heard a Pewee. Back up by the meadow entrance that other Ovenbird was still singing! A Blue Jay sang its imitation of a Red Shouldered Hawk and chased after a friend. Back in the first woods later, I heard a Great Crested Flycatcher, Ovenbirds and across the road on the trail there, a Veery. This place is definitely worth the trip from NW Lansing! I also noted that we owe a debt of gratitude to the volunteers who maintain these excellent trails! And of course I am grateful to Anne Boyer for donating this magnificent property to the Land Trust so we can all enjoy its quiet beauty. Donna L. Scott 535 Lansing Station Road Lansing, NY d...@cornell.edu<mailto:d...@cornell.edu> -- Cayugabirds-L List Info: http://www.NortheastBirding.com/CayugabirdsWELCOME http://www.NortheastBirding.com/CayugabirdsRULES http://www.NortheastBirding.com/CayugabirdsSubscribeConfigurationLeave.htm ARCHIVES: 1) http://firstname.lastname@example.org/maillist.html 2) http://www.surfbirds.com/birdingmail/Group/Cayugabirds 3) http://birdingonthe.net/mailinglists/CAYU.html Please submit your observations to eBird: http://ebird.org/content/ebird/ --