Central Park, Manhattan, N.Y. City

It’s seemed, not too surprisingly, a fairly quiet week in Central, & if 
anything the modest flurry of late-winter movement re-settled or moved on, in 
the days since last weekend.

Last Sunday (3/4) in a late-day pass by the N. Meadow ballfields, I found & 
photographed 3 Killdeer; these were well hunkered-in even with such short turf 
grass (& no snow then) perhaps getting some respite from the then-strong north 
winds.  I checked there & elsewhere in the park over the rest of the week, & 
did not see any more.  Killdeer are not common in Central, but likely annual in 
late winter-early spring & can easily be overlooked. They sometimes show up 
when any number of American Robins are passing or arriving in the park. At that 
time (Sunday, 3/4) approx. 250 robins were found acattered over the N. Meadow & 
it’s immediate perimter. That batch has by now moved on; most seemed to do so 
ahead of this past week’s snowfall (or 'slush-fall’ if one were out IN it as I 
was for a while.

Species (& rough numbers noted for some) over the past week, to Saturday 3/10:

Double-crested Cormorant (in & out to-from reservoir but seemed absent after 
the slushstorm)
Great Blue Heron
Turkey Vulture (a few)
Canada Goose
Wood Duck (at least 5 present Sunday & Monday, Meer-Reservoir-Lake-Pond)
American Black Duck
Northern Shoveler
Northern Pintail (drake has returned to his favored Pond, at the SE part of 
Hooded Merganser (pair lingering, most regularly at Turtle Pond)
Ruddy Duck
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Cooper's Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
American Kestrel
Peregrine Falcon
American Coot (Pond & Reservoir)
American Woodcock (1, north woods, Monday, 3/5)
Ring-billed Gull
[American] Herring Gull
Great Black-backed Gull
['feral'] Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (very modest no’s. scattered thru park, wintered)
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Yellow-shafted Flicker
Eastern Phoebe (few, last noted by me this week again at Great Hill, post-storm)
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee (very few)
Tufted Titmouse
White-breasted Nuthatch
Brown Creeper (several)
Carolina Wren (perked-up, a bit of singing from 1)
Golden-crowned Kinglet (several, & seem to have overwintered)
Hermit Thrush (1 overwintered, southeast part of park)
American Robin (multiple, but no big swarms just yet)
Gray Catbird (2 overwintered)
Northern Mockingbird (various locations in the park)
Brown Thrasher (at least 2 overwintered)
European Starling
[Red] Fox Sparrow (good no’s. to Monday- 12+, then poss. fewer)
Song Sparrow (many thru Mon. - 25++, & far fewer after that day)
Swamp Sparrow (3 noted Mon. - Meer / Lake / Pond areas)
White-throated Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco (fair no’s. continued to at least Friday 3/9)
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird (modest no’s. after earlier small movement)
Rusty Blackbird (1, Meer island, Mon. 3/5)
Common Grackle (continuing, many had wintered, also earlier migrants)
House Finch
American Goldfinch (ongoing small no’s.)
House Sparrow 

Although slush-snow-sleet & cold weather have slowed all plant growth, there’ve 
been more green shoots & some tiny leaves appearing in many parts of the park; 
several of the earliest Azaleas put forth pink blossoms (Strawberry Fields had 
one), & some grass was even greening-up - a little.  A very few insects were 
even showing, & the few E. phoebes & kinglets etc. were able to find some, 
albeit with trouble in the worst bits of the week’s weather. 

good and ethically-minded birding,

Tom Fiore


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