[cayugabirds-l] Sumac for catbirds and robins

2020-05-24 Thread AB Clark
A couple of sumac heads “saved” over winter in a dry bouquet are getting lots 
of attention from my catbirds and now a male robin. I just hung them at our 
feeders.  
 I knew crows, jays and woodpeckers (hairy, downy) love them, but didn’t 
realize that they were quite so broadly popular.  Maybe I will save more.  We 
have been trying to encourage as many sumac clones as possible to be 
productive.  Will redouble our efforts.

Anne


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] mango pits and eager eating

2020-05-11 Thread AB Clark
Worrying about something more substantial than orange to sustain the orioles, I 
put out a mango pit with some attached fruit,  The adult male oriole reappears 
to appreciate it after hiding on Saturday, a young male came in today, but also 
catbirds have been using it.  I think I may widen my fruit offerings during the 
next series of cool days.

Two White-crowned Sparrows are now SO white-crowned that I swear those crowns 
are going to jump right off their jaunty little heads.  Could it be a pair?  Or 
just white-crowned bros?  They travel everywhere together. 

Good company during the grading, administrative-etc onslaught.

anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
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[cayugabirds-l] Cliff swallows on HIle School Rd Wetland--Wed May 6

2020-05-07 Thread AB Clark
I haven’t rechecked today but the swallow species distribution has shifted as 
of yesterday, Wed May 6:  more Barn Swallows but also 2-3 Cliff Swallows, 
looking a different shape, no tail streamers and with distinct light rumps 
clearly seen.  At least one Rough-winged Swallow was still there, and some Tree 
Swallows as has been the case for the last 10 days, perhaps.  Losing track of 
time.  

Also between 5-520pm, an Osprey going N along the waterway, and a Peregrine 
going across without stopping, and a Green Heron, the first *I* have  seen.  I 
think others have seen one.  Female Redwinged Blackbirds sound like they are 
nesting, but I haven’t seen any carrying material yet.



Then around 630, after another Zoom session, a female Harrier was coursing back 
and forth across the field East of my house.  She finally left diagonally SE, 
probably across Ed Hill Rd.  Past years, just across (east) Ed Hill from the 
first big fields on the west side of Ed Hill as you go S from HIle School 
intersection, I have seen a pair frequently and figure they nest well east of 
the road there.   

Anne

PS apologies for not getting these into eBird at the time.  eBird and my phone 
are not collaborating these days.

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com




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[cayugabirds-l] A flock of Rusty Blackbirds

2020-04-18 Thread AB Clark
Singing away in Hile School Rd wetland—estimated at 20+.  Will count from 
pictures and get into eBird—phone battery limitations.

Also small newish flock of Savannah Sparrows (6) today and last 2 days in 
upland field East of the unfinished wetland road.  They particularly like the 
small sapling growth around the electric pole beyond (east of) the 2 track. 

 
both between 9 and 930 am this Sat morning.

Anne

Anne B Clark
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[cayugabirds-l] A disturbing report on a bird disease in Europe

2020-04-15 Thread AB Clark
Specifically through”Birdguides” about a mysterious illness affecting at least 
Blue Tits in Germany, but from the comments, it must be more widely spread.

https://www.birdguides.com/news/mystery-illness-killing-off-german-blue-tits/ 



I don’t know why I am sending this out in the face of our own pandemic, but it 
seems like something we should know about.

Anne

Anne B Clark
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Re: "Juvenile cowbirds sneak out at night" - RE: [cayugabirds-l] Cowbirds

2020-04-12 Thread AB Clark
 M. Schelsky, Mark E. Hauber, 
> Jeffrey P. Hoover. Out on their own: a test of adult-assisted dispersal in 
> fledgling brood parasites reveals solitary departures from hosts. Animal 
> Behaviour, 2015; 110: 29 DOI: 10.1016/j.anbehav.2015.09.009
> [= 
> https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0003347215003401?via%3Dihub
>   ]
> 
> Cite This Page:
> University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. "Juvenile cowbirds sneak out at 
> night." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 November 2015. 
> .
> 
> 
> -End quote. 
> 
> --sincerely, 
> Magnus Fiskesjö, PhD
> Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, Cornell University
> McGraw Hall, Room 201. Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
> E-mail: magnus.fiske...@cornell.edu, or: n...@cornell.edu
> 
> Affiliations at Cornell University, WWW:
> Anthropology Department, https://anthropology.cornell.edu/anthropology-faculty
> Southeast Asia Program (SEAP), https://seap.einaudi.cornell.edu/people/faculty
> East Asia Program (EAP), http://eap.einaudi.cornell.edu/people/core-faculty
> CIAMS (Archaeology), https://archaeology.cornell.edu/faculty
> Cornell Institute for Public Affairs (CIPA), 
> cipa.cornell.edu/academics/fieldfaculty.cfm
> Judith Reppy Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies (PACS), 
> http://pacs.einaudi.cornell.edu/people/steering-committee
> _
> 
> From: John Confer [con...@ithaca.edu]
> Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 7:47 PM
> To: Magnus Fiskesjo; CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: Re: [cayugabirds-l] Cowbirds
> 
> I, also, wonder about this report. I've had to handle nestlings for research 
> purposes, always with fear and the most care possible. Nestlings don't stay 
> in nests any longer than absolutely necessary because nests are depredated by 
> raccoon, cat, weasel, skunk, raptors, etc. Nestlings generally can't leave 
> any earlier because they don't have sufficient feathers for insulation nor 
> muscle strength to move around. Further, since they don't thermoregulate 
> until just about the day they leave, they would have a hard time surviving in 
> the lower temperatures of night. 3 to 4 to 5 AM is usually the coldest time 
> of the 24 hr cycle, often 20-30-40 degrees colder than mid-day. This doesn't 
> makes sense to me.
> 
> It is a pretty image.
> 
> John
> 
> 
> 
> From: bounce-124540618-25065...@list.cornell.edu 
>  on behalf of Magnus Fiskesjo 
> 
> Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 10:10 AM
> To: AB Clark 
> Cc: Michael H. Goldstein ; CAYUGABIRDS-L 
> 
> Subject: RE: [cayugabirds-l] Cowbirds
> 
> This message originated from outside the Ithaca College email system.
> 
> 
> Hi, I would love to know, and I sure wish I could find that article. I 
> definitely recall that it said the cowbird chicks that were studied left 
> their nest like 3am to go to the field ("party"), and then came back to the 
> nest before dawn, to continue to pretend to be their slave parent's child!
> 
> Of course later they'll not sit in the nest any more, and wander around while 
> being fed, I've seen that. And yes I am sure you are right about most of the 
> other things you noted! I maybe should not have said "teenager", -- that was 
> my word choice, not that of the scholars whose research was reported in that 
> Living Bird magazine article.  I used "teenager" because the cowbird nightly 
> field party seemed to be a ... teenager's dance party.
> 
> Maybe someone else knows the URL for the actual article. I can't find it, I 
> must have read it in print only.
> 
> This rather memorable article also talked about other astounding discoveries 
> such as that the catbird is the only bird that can resist the cowbird's 
> trickery. Unlike other birds, it said, the catbird will expel every egg that 
> looks different from its first egg. So, the cowbirds can only outsmart it by 
> laying their egg in the catbirds' new nest before even mama catbird has laid 
> her first egg there. If it can, then the catbird will expel her own eggs, one 
> after the other. And if the cowbird scheme fails, it might rip up the nest 
> (as revenge).
> 
> --yrs.,
> Magnus Fiskesjö
> n...@cornell.edu
> 
> From: AB Clark [anneb.cl...@gmail.com]
> Sent: Saturday, April 11, 2020 9:30 AM
> To: Magnus Fiskesjo
> Cc: Michael H. Goldstein; CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: Re: [cayugabirds-l] Cowbirds
> 
> I wonder if there has been some mis-intepretation either in the article or by 
> subsequent readers.  Cowbird young, like other passerines, leave the nest in 
> the care of parents (foster or otherwise) and live outside the nest from then 
> on.  (OK individua

Re: [cayugabirds-l] Cowbirds

2020-04-11 Thread AB Clark
I wonder if there has been some mis-intepretation either in the article or by 
subsequent readers.  Cowbird young, like other passerines, leave the nest in 
the care of parents (foster or otherwise) and live outside the nest from then 
on.  (OK individuals may hop outside during the day and return at night for the 
day or two over which they fledge.)  Care for cowbirds in the fledgling stage 
lasts a similar time to their relatives, red-winged blackbirds and other 
smallish icterids.  They should be fed and be following or calling to parents 
over the next 12-14 days, not joining older cowbirds.  Teenagers would be 
perhaps yearling cowbirds?  It is later, in summer and fall, when young 
cowbirds are independent of parents, that they flock up with other cowbirds and 
blackbirds.  

I haven’t heard anything about 3 am gatherings from Meredith or her students.  
Seems pretty dark for any such passerine to be moving.  West and King studied 
them in aviaries and it could be that researchers got up at 3 am to set up and 
be there when singing started to happen.  But in any case, cowbird song 
learning is a fascinating situation where the basic songs are clearly not 
learned from parents during late nestling or early fledgling periods, i.e. 
develop “innately”, but  are socially modified in a number of ways, feedback 
from female cowbirds and from competing male cowbirds both.  West and King 
published several really nice overviews in accessible papers, Scientific 
American or American Scientist, I believe.

By the way, there is at least one video-documented report of a hatchling 
cowbird behaving like cuckoos and butting host eggs out of the nest.


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com



> On Apr 11, 2020, at 9:11 AM, Magnus Fiskesjo  
> wrote:
> 
> This morning, a male cowbird singing, at Salt Point. Never heard that before. 
> A very low volume series of thin crispy notes. No clucking, as in some 
> recordings of its song.
> 
> The bird sat very close, on top of the little pine/fur tree at the lakeside 
> fork of the path to the Bluebird Path. 
> 
> It refused to leave its perch and continued singing even as I stood right 
> under the tree. 
> 
> Ps. the weirdest cowbird research for me was the Living Bird piece reporting 
> on how a cowbird knows it is a cowbird, and not a whatever other bird, 
> despite being raised by them as slave parents. It was discovered that the 
> grown chick gets up at 3am and leaves the slaving foster parents' nest, to go 
> hang out with other teenager cowbirds in a nearby field. Next question is, 
> how do hey know that they should get out of bed at 3am and go to the field 
> party and get to know their cowbirdness?  
> ps. I could not find the reference to the Living Bird magazine article where 
> I read this. I only find this partial account, also interesting but no 
> mention of the teenager party: 
> https://www.allaboutbirds.org/news/if-brown-headed-cowbirds-are-reared-by-other-species-how-do-they-know-they-are-cowbirds-when-they-grow-up/
> 
> --
> Magnus Fiskesjö
> n...@cornell.edu 
> _
> From: bounce-124539965-84019...@list.cornell.edu 
> [bounce-124539965-84019...@list.cornell.edu] on behalf of Michael H. 
> Goldstein [michael.goldst...@cornell.edu]
> Sent: Friday, April 10, 2020 8:05 PM
> To: CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: Re: [cayugabirds-l] Cowbirds
> 
> Cowbirds are crazier than you think…check out the research by Meredith West 
> and Andrew King on the role of female cowbirds (who don’t sing) in shaping 
> the development of juvenile males' song by using rapid wing gestures:  
> http://www.indiana.edu/~aviary/Research/female%20visual%20displays.pdf and 
> more generally, http://www.indiana.edu/~aviary/Publications.htm
> 
> Cheers,
> Mike
> 
> 
> 
> On Apr 10, 2020, at 7:49 PM, Peter Saracino 
> mailto:petersarac...@gmail.com>> wrote:
> 
> I was having a cup of coffee looking out the window at 3 male and 3 female 
> cowbirds going at the sunflower seeds. As I watched them it dawned on me that 
> all of them were raised by foster parents!!!
> According to the Lab of O:
> "the cowbird does not depend exclusively on a single host species; it has 
> been known to parasitize over 220 different species of North American birds".
> Crazy, wild stuff.
> Pete Sar
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> 

[cayugabirds-l] Flicker taking refuge on a trunk face

2020-04-10 Thread AB Clark
A pair of flickers just followed one after other up trunk of large ash, on E 
side of tree. After one flew, the other has clung to the trunk, with its head 
folded back, bill down into its feathers, in “roosting” position, if you can 
imagine.  A red v located very weirdly at the top off the body., 

Now it has turned to preening, after about 4 min in its “face in feathers” 
posture.

These are FOY Flickers seen in my yard.  Other than that, I and the sparrows 
are impressed at how aggressive purple finches are, not just males.


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] Barn swallow and VA rail-Hile school Rd Wetland

2020-04-09 Thread AB Clark
AMong the 25+ tree swallows, one Barn Swallow was swirling about over the open 
water, and a VA rail was heard tik-tik ing mostly, rather faintly, on the N 
side of the road.  About 1030 am today.

Counts and observations were abbreviated by the wind-rain coming in as I walked 
fast home.  


Also 3 days ago was my first obs of a Belted Kingfisher on a foraging tree over 
the S side of the road.  None seen today.  

Anne
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] There male redwings, Mon West Danby area also

2020-02-20 Thread AB Clark
The early F-types I was referring to were very clearly female, being observed 
by my grad student who was working on them for his disseration. They had begun 
twittering, cattail to cattail by March.  Their marsh was all unfrozen.  We 
were starting to wonder if they would actually build nests in March.  Typically 
older females come back before younger ones.  I suppose they could confuse by 
having salmon color in their heads, but their body feathers are not dark.

As for universal “conversion” of males into certain males by February?  I 
wouldn’t count on there NOT being some very odd males still. 

As an old primate person, I think the banders' age designations are confusingly 
obfuscatory of critical differences.  Blackbirds here fledge from sometime in 
May to 15 July (or maybe later now).  That means that young males returning now 
in mid February range in age from 7 mos to 9 mos old.  This probably 
contributes to a big range in plumages for those young males.  But it isn’t 
hard to tell young “female-type” males  from young or old females.  Young 
females are very stripey, but not blackish-stripy and their heads are light;  
older females often will have salmon-orange color in their heads and are 
definitely not blackish in overtone.  In some years, some older females have 
distinct epaulets (an easy fall and winter??), but they are usually only 
visible in hand or during aggression.  So I would expect anyone seeing a very 
immature pliumage male would say something like “wow, that can’t be just a 
really dark female…but what IS it?”   And the feathers will be odd looking, 
because they include dark ones that young females don’t have.  I think I have 
some pictures from the last two years….

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com



> On Feb 20, 2020, at 4:12 PM, Suan Hsi Yong  wrote:
> 
> Anne Clark wrote:
> We had actual females back in a marsh near Binghamton/Endicott as early as 
> February.  Usually females did not show up until late march.  I don’t mean 
> nest, just be seen in flocks and maybe visit the marsh.
> 
> Will all second-year males have "turned" by February, or could these early 
> F-types be second year males?
> 
> Suan
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] singing House Finches

2020-02-20 Thread AB Clark
Not very organized song but trying out the old syringeal muscles after some 
down time.

anne

Anne B Clark
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] There male redwings, Mon West Danby area also

2020-02-20 Thread AB Clark
As someone studying redwing nesting and nestlings in the 89-2000 region, I can 
say they were incredibly variable 3 decades ago.  They could easily show up in 
February when the winter was warm.  We had actual females back in a marsh near 
Binghamton/Endicott as early as February.  Usually females did not show up 
until late march.  I don’t mean nest, just be seen in flocks and maybe visit 
the marsh.

In the years 95 and 97-98, which were incredibly warm winters, we had redwings 
at feeders being reported all winter—some people were emailing me!  In 98, a 
very warm spring, I had two first year females that were banded on Cornell 
ponds (by me) back on the ponds in spring…possible explanation was that they 
never went anywhere all winter and thus failed to disperse. 

Redwinged blackbird males were also staying all winter or reappearing during 
the winter in SW Michigan in the 80’s,  in warm ups, like robins.  Not many but 
some.  These are birds whose migratory pattern set them up well to respond 
strongly to climatic shifts.

No doubt that the mean dates have shifted, but I can look up first arrivals and 
first egg dates across the 90’s decade at some point, for comparsion—at some 
point!  

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com



> On Feb 18, 2020, at 11:17 PM, Nigel  wrote:
> 
> The RWB are about 1 month early - they used to show up mid to late March.
> We had at least 6 Monday afternoon. They looked more like yellow wing 
> blackbirds - the wing stripe was a very dull muddy yellow. There were also 
> some Starlings mixed in.
> The hills are alive with the sounds of ... RWB.
>  
> Nigel, near the Lindsay-Parsons Biodiversity Preserve, West Danby, NY
> 
> > There are currently three male Red-winged Blackbirds on the ground under 
> > our feeders on Muriel Street in Ithaca NY. Nice to see. Welcome back guys. 
> > Linda Orkin
>  
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] There male redwings

2020-02-18 Thread AB Clark
Not trying to compete, but late last week, had a flock of mostly young males 
(up to 19) and today a group of ca 50-60.  A smaller subset came to feeders 
(25?  they swooped in where I couldn’t see all on the ground)  with a nice male 
Common Grackle.  
Again, it is interesting that a majority of the Red-wings have been young 
males, lots of brown edging on feathers and rather orange epaulets.  I 
definitely had one adult male as well today—all black contour feathers.

Maybe the SE winds convinced them to move up a bit.  

anne


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com



> On Feb 18, 2020, at 5:57 PM, Barbara Bauer Sadovnic  
> wrote:
> 
> We had two males out in Enfield today too, on Halseyville Rd.!
> 
>> On Feb 18, 2020, at 4:55 PM, Linda Orkin  wrote:
>> 
>> There are currently three male Red-winged Blackbirds on the ground under our 
>> feeders on Muriel Street in Ithaca NY. Nice to see. Welcome back guys. Linda 
>> Orkin
>> 
>> Sent from my iPad
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[cayugabirds-l] Screech owl trilling on a warm fall night

2019-10-01 Thread AB Clark
In between rain showers—Toward Ed Hill Rd and  SSE of my house on Hile School 
Rd.  

Anne
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] US population trends; time frame for bird study

2019-09-26 Thread AB Clark
Just to say—what all of us really know—we don’t want our children to be the 
generation to have no one to come behind them, to care and innovate and compost 
for them as they age and become infirm.  Demography is a complex thing and, as 
we in the west take longer to die on average, we must somehow increase our 
functional lifetimes as well, in order to make up fo the smaller size of 
generations of young, able folks behind us. 

The larger faster-growing problem is energy/space/resource requirements per 
person globally.  In the West, we would do better to cut that drastically than 
work on fewer babies.  That includes staying healthier longer; as someone who 
remembers a lot of years before 1970, I bet my use of resources will increase 
massively with any major illness in future.  

Outside the 1st world, fewer babies seems like the answer, but amazingly the 
pattern has repeatedly been that people cut back on having children when their 
children are likely to survive, when the success of the children increases with 
investment/child (investment includes time, energy of parents) and when women 
have economic and polical power.  (Not that women are wiser—they just do the 
baby-carrying.)  So let’s work on health of infants and children globally as 
well, at the same time helping the developing world NOT replicate our 
regrettable overuse of resources, offering routes to economic well being that 
are not ecologically disastrous.  We western nations should be generous with 
any knowledge and pragmatic ways we have in how to live healthy, ecologically 
sound lives.  That is the tragedy of our nation’s current behavior.

This sounds very preachy…sorry, anne


> On Sep 26, 2019, at 1:54 PM, Alicia  wrote:
> 
> Decrease in children per family: In the 1970's, there were an average of 2.12 
> children per family, while from 2009-2018, the number had decreased to an 
> average of 1.88 and is holding steady there - a decrease of over 11% . (For 
> more info, check here 
> .)
>   The percentage of single child families doubled from 11% of all families in 
> 1975 to 22% in 2016.  At this point, the birth rate alone is considerably 
> less than replacement rate and even with the increase in longevity, the only 
> reason the US population size is increasing is immigration.  (That is a 
> factual, not a political, statement - for the record, I am not against 
> immigration!)
> 
> When did the decline in bird population begin? The effect of human population 
> size and, particularly, habitat destruction and the changing chemistry of our 
> soil, air, and water, surely have taken a huge toll on birds.  But in at 
> least aspect of the new bird population study is misleading.  Its baseline is 
> 1970, about 50 years ago, but speaking as someone who was in high school then 
> and who learned from birders who were alive at the beginning of the 20th 
> century, it is clear that at least spring migration already was had suffered 
> a significant decline by 1970.  One very reliable birder I got to know was 
> born in 1905, and he assured me that by 1980, spring migration was a shadow 
> of what it had been in the 1920s & 30s in Tompkins County.  He wondered if 
> migratory routes had changed but said for whatever reason, there were only a 
> fraction of the warblers, vireos, orioles, and tanagers moving through the 
> area in the spring that there were 50 yrs before.  (This was a man who spent 
> pretty much every waking hour of his 93 years being outdoors birding, 
> fishing, or when he was younger hunting.)  Other people who had been around 
> birding in the 1930s before told me much the same.  
> 
> If you check accounts in Birds By Bent you'll find supporting evidence for 
> this in reports made at the time.  For example, a few years ago I had 25 Palm 
> Warblers in one group.  eBird was skeptical, but later when I checked Birds 
> by Bent, there were several accounts of palm warbler flocks, including one 
> from Wm Brewster (co-founder of the American Ornithologists' Union), writing 
> from Massachusetts in 1906, who noted casually that in spring "one may often 
> meet up with fifteen or twenty in a single flock or forty or fifty in the 
> course of a morning walk."  I don't think any of us thinks of a walk that 
> yields 50 Palm Warbler as a migration event that 'often' happens now.
> 
> So as we think about this, we need to be careful not to assume that 1970 was 
> the beginning of the end, just because few of us around today remember even 
> more plentiful birds before that.  There is plenty of evidence that this 
> started much, much earlier, and as we look for causes and solutions, that 
> needs to be kept in mind.
> 
> Alicia
> 
> 
> 
> On 9/26/2019 11:55 AM, Deb Grantham wrote:
>> You’re right about population – nobody wants to talk about that anymore.
>>  
>> I do the same with composting but also compost ALL of my food waste. I 

[cayugabirds-l] Lesser Black-backed Gulls at Stevenson Rd Compost

2019-09-21 Thread AB Clark
Apologies for not putting this out during the day, but there were two Lesser 
Black-backed gulls on the mounds at the Stevenson Road Composting Facility 
between 1120-130 today.  

They were with maybe 700 Ring-billed Gulls and 25 or so Herring Gulls. One was 
an adult, white head/neck, with very bright but not deep bill and big smudgy 
red spot (as well as yellowish legs and fairly dark back) and other with some 
head-neck streaking, a black-ish bill and less uniform grey back.  Neither 
flew, and I am not proficient enough to  guess at age of second bird. 

Anne
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] [nysbirds-l] Fwd: News Alert: North America has lost 29% of its birds since 1970, study finds. Experts blame habitat loss, pesticides, light pollution and cats.

2019-09-19 Thread AB Clark
a. Starlings are declining in Europe also, apparently due to farming practices 
(no grain lying around?  hedgerows?).  But if you want to look for some “black 
bird” related explanations, check out the USDA site to see how many “nuisance” 
birds were killed using Avitrol on big feedlots where a LOT of those pesky 
birds eat grains….feedlots=where our breeding populations gather in the winter. 
 The USDA takes responsibility proudly for 1-2 million a year.

b. When BU puts out pelletized lawn feeder/weed killer, there are usually some 
dead robins.  

c. The deer problem is solvable (less deer and ardent replantings) but it will 
take many generations.  Maybe you have heard my grad student Justin describe 
his research.  There are basically no understory nesting warblers and other 
species in the Nature Preserve now.  For instance.  And understory takes a long 
time and replanting to come back after decades of being eaten.

d. Data is still out, of course, but wind farms at least appear to be the 
largest problem for larger birds…eagles, hawks, vultures. Yes, there are things 
that can be done to make them safer—studies done and published and ongoing.  
Wind farms probably won’t turn out to be biggies (my thought), but much of this 
decline happened over the previous 4 decades, not just since wind farms got 
big. 

e. Migrants are also definitely being hit in their wintering grounds….remember 
the Amazon fires, as an ongoing example.  I don’t want to think about how many 
tamarin and other small mammal species we have lost forever in those…but burns 
don’t leave lots of habitat to return to after a summer up here.  Thats only 
one kind of habitat loss.  The Bahamas wasn’t trivial.

so many many hits..

> On Sep 19, 2019, at 8:03 PM, David Nicosia  wrote:
> 
> 
> 1. Why are european starlings declining?  That is crazy but concerning when a 
> seemingly adaptable invasive specie is dying off. 
> 2. Could it be related (in part) to West Nile Virus? 
> https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2015/11/west-nile-virus-still-wiping-out-birds-across-north-america
>  
> 
> 3. Grassland birds have been declining for decades and will continue unless 
> farming practices are changed and more bird friendly.  In the northeast U.S, 
> we have lost many farms and they have reverted back to woodlands. I see this 
> in many areas of Bradford Co. PA where I grew up. I remember a lot of field 
> birds in places that are now full of saplings 30 feet tall. 
> 4. Rampant deer populations destroying undergrowth for many ground nesters.  
> The DEC locally needs to find a solution here. This is manageable! 
> 5. Pesticides and herbicides (especially the lawn treatments) which are so 
> common. I always wonder how this affects Robins and other birds that forage 
> on the ground. I never use this stuff on my "lawn" and it has a lot of weeds. 
> So what.  I could care less what people think.  
> 6. Spruce budworm population cycles in our boreal forests. This could explain 
> decline in warblers since there was a massive outbreak of budworms in the 70s 
> and 80s. Many warbler's populations are tied to these cycles. The 1990s and 
> 2000s there was a lull and now they are on their way up again. This could 
> explain a more natural cycle in warbler populations independent of vireos. 
> (this is speculation). 
> 7. More towers and wind farms?  If a wind farm and tower are lighted properly 
> does it kill that many songbirds at night?  The FCC has new guidelines which 
> supposedly reduces tower kills. 
> https://abcbirds.org/article/communication-tower-owners-change-lighting-protect-birds/
>  
> 
>Not sure if this is working but hopefully so. 
> 8. Invasive species.  Look at the wholesale changes when all of our ash trees 
> die, hemlocks and others. Also invasive fish, plants etc. 
> 
> There is probably many others which is sobering. 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> On Thu, Sep 19, 2019 at 4:21 PM Purbita Saha  > wrote:
> Adding Audubon magazine's coverage on the Cornell study as well, not for 
> shameless promotion but because it has a helpful graphic and also does a 
> by-habitat breakdown of the declines.
> 
> https://www.audubon.org/news/north-america-has-lost-more-1-4-birds-last-50-years-new-study-says
>  
> 
>  
> 
> Just spent my lunch at a hawkwatch and was at least happy to see many chimney 
> swifts.
> 
> Happy birding (and conserving),
> Purbita 
> 
> On Thu, Sep 19, 2019 at 2:28 PM Andrew Baksh  > wrote:
> And on that note. A call on Bronx Birders to please contact Margarita 
> Eremeyev at mereme...@gmail.com 
> 
> She is doing extensive research on the possible adverse 

Re: [cayugabirds-l] Swallows eating mushrooms

2019-08-01 Thread AB Clark
Mushrooms almost immediately attract a range of small insects, some of which 
specialize on reproducting in them—tiny beetles, gnats (flies) and I am sure 
several other groups.  I wonder if they were not picking these easy insects 
off, especially given their juvenile (klutzy predator) status?  The movements 
might have attracted them.

Anne

> On Aug 1, 2019, at 9:25 AM, Johnson, Alyssa  wrote:
> 
> Good morning, 
> 
> I observed something so strange this morning. There are several dozen 
> juvenile tree swallows all over the back lawn at the Montezuma Audubon Center 
> (presumably staging?) fluttering in the air and landing on the ground. I 
> watched multiples feeding on these small white mushrooms, which iNaturalist 
> tells me are milky conecap. I have a picture of the mushroom with feeding 
> marks on it if anyone wants to see. I am trying to get a picture of the 
> swallows actually feeding on the mushrooms but they won’t hold still! 
> 
> Thoughts?!
> 
> Alyssa Johnson
> Environmental Educator
> Montezuma Audubon Center
> 
> PO Box 187
> 2295 State Route 89
> Savannah, New York 13146
> (315) 365-3588
> ajohn...@audubon.org 
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[cayugabirds-l] Great Egret--Hile School Rd wetland pm 28Jul19

2019-07-28 Thread AB Clark
Seen S of Hile School Rd, central wetland, preening calmly in dead trees—two 
probably juvenile Great Blue Herons in tree next door.  Found as light was low 
at 855 pm tonight—sans binocs, etc.  Ran back home to get scope—not trusting my 
size estimates in deep dusk.  Dark legs, marginally smaller than herons, 
couldn’t confirm yellow bill against its feathers but—well, there aren’t a lot 
of options.  Bill slender and long, less robust than GBH—at least as seen in 
near darkness.

Anne

Anne B. Clark
147 Hile School Rd.
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Turkey eggs question.

2019-07-10 Thread AB Clark
Depends on how old the embryos were when incubation was interrupted.  Far 
along, they are probably dead.  Very early, there’s a chance, especially since 
it is quite warm.  Before the start of incubation, an excellent chance.  Of 
course, it also depends on how many hours ago the nest was hit.

Probably worth getting them immediately into turkey level warmth (101-103 F?  I 
would have to check)  Then one could “candle” them in a day or so and see 
whether there’s any movement in blood vessels, how old or developed they are, 
etc.  

Anne

> On Jul 10, 2019, at 12:09 PM, psaracin  wrote:
> 
> 
> 
> 
> One of Janet Aiken's son's guy hit a turkey nest while mowing. Ryan found it 
> this morning there are six eggs out of nine not broken. Anyone know if they 
> could still be incubated or is it to late?
> Thanks
> Pete Sar on behalf of Janet
> 
> Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
> 
> 
> _._,_._,_
> 
> 
> Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
> 
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] Backyard drama--Flicker escapes Cooper's Hawk attack

2019-06-07 Thread AB Clark
More than attack—the hawk had the flicker in its claws on our backyard lawn 
area where the attack apparently had taken place,  but was struggling to get 
up.  With Flicker flapping and “peep-peep-peeep”ing, they were sweeping at 
ground level across the lawn toward the “old field’ vegetation and trees 
beyond.  Not sure how much my coming outside influenced the outcome, but 
moments after I saw the moving duo, the flicker got free and flew strongly 
away, calling loudly.  

Whew—that would have been one chunky dinner for any young hawks...


ALSO Green Heron note:  Green Heron nests were several in the Hile School Rd 
Wetland last year, but I had not confirmed any this year:.  While collecting 
Helisoma snails from the very green duckweedy surface, I watched a very vocal 
Green Heron repeatedly coming out of the still leafless bushes of the swamp in 
the NE section  of the wetland, and foraging along the E margin of the bushes 
with the main N water body.   Vocalizing as it flew out toward foraging, like a 
female redwinged blackbird leaving her nest area.  (I have no idea if this is 
an appropriate comparison.)   I have not yet been able to see a nest.

Anne
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville 13068
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] first ever here

2019-05-13 Thread AB Clark
HI all

I just want to note that 
a) I have had more males than usual but that means 3, plus several females- in 
a rural area- and 
b) Bluewing bird listers in Broome have sent out 3 or 4 messages about 
unusual/rare/first time visits from RB grosbeaks at their in-town feeders.

Hearing both lists with similar reports is like hearing echoes!

> On May 13, 2019, at 11:27 AM, Deborah Schmidle  wrote:
> 
> Although I don't live downtown, I live about 5 minutes from Cornell. I have 
> had a male at my feeder for over a week now. I think I have seen one maybe 
> three times in the past 15 years and then it was usually only for a day.  I 
> have never had one stay for so long. A real treat. 
> From: bounce-123609273-46471...@list.cornell.edu 
>  
>  > on behalf of Muhammad 
> Arif mailto:mna...@live.com>>
> Sent: Monday, May 13, 2019 11:04 AM
> To: Judith W. Jones; CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: RE:[cayugabirds-l] first ever here
>  
> I had one male on Saturday morning at my fall creek home. He wasn’t eating 
> the seeds and just seemed to be resting. This is the second time I’ve seen a 
> rose-breasted grosbeak at my house in the last 5 years – so, they are 
> definitely rare in downtown areas.
>  
> --
> muhammad arif
> https://www.instagram.com/arif.photos/ 
> 
> http://facebook.com/m.arif.photos/ 
> https://mainetomiami.wordpress.com 
>  
> From: bounce-123606997-77717...@list.cornell.edu 
>  
>  > on behalf of Judith W. 
> Jones mailto:j...@cornell.edu>>
> Sent: Sunday, May 12, 2019 8:56:58 AM
> To: CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: [cayugabirds-l] first ever here
>  
> 2 male rose breasted grosbeaks at my downtown southside feeder gorging 
> on sunflower seeds
> 
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] First House Wren this morning

2019-04-23 Thread AB Clark
At least the first prospectively assessing the nest boxes on Hile School Rd. 

 This morning at 7am singing atop the empty feeder.


Anne Clark

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[cayugabirds-l] HUGE flock of red-winged blackbirds

2019-03-19 Thread AB Clark
Maybe 2-3 K or more and I had no binocs (on a stool, cleaning a nest box) but 
they worked their way along the fields of Ed Hill Rd just S of Hile School rd, 
then west around the wood lot at the intersection of Ed Hill x Hile School to 
cross Hile School Rd going North toward Peruville Rd.  They sounded like 
rushing water….and without binocs, this is not trustworthy, but it looked to me 
that there were females in the flock i.e., 2 sizes of flying birds. 

Anne



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Re: [cayugabirds-l] odd Bufflehead

2019-02-24 Thread AB Clark
Just a thought, and an inference based on passerines (Red winged blackbirds):  
Late fledged males were also likely to turn up in spring with more juvenile 
plumage—orange-y epaulet, small epaulet, lots of light edging to the feathers 
or some downright brown.  Naturally my sample is small because we always got 
few returns of banded males.  BUT if climate change makes breeding seasons 
longer, by extending the dates by which late nesters or renesters have to have 
fledged their young in order for them to migrate successfully, maybe we will 
also see a wider range of plumage transitions to adult/breeding because some of 
the transitioners are really younger.  

A theory supported by very little data...



> On Feb 24, 2019, at 8:25 PM, Dave Nutter  wrote:
> 
> Thanks, Bob, for leading a fine field trip, including timing our stop at 
> Sheldrake Point just when the front came through, which was fun to see, and 
> only a little wet. 
> 
> While  the species we saw on the ponds at Union Springs were expected, they 
> included an individual which I found interesting. On the Factory Street pond, 
> a pair of Buffleheads were moving together, with the male following the 
> female, yet trying to stay ahead of her and in her view while also mimicking 
> her movements - classic courtship/pursuit. 
> 
> But the behavioral male did not have the the typical male Bufflehead breeding 
> plumage with the huge circle of white encompassing the back of the head, and 
> the bright white neck, breast and sides. 
> 
> Instead, he looked a lot like the female, with an oblong white mark behind 
> the eye that was only a little broader than usual on an otherwise dark head, 
> and gray sides that, instead of being plain, faded to white toward the top 
> and faded to a paler whitish breast and even whiter toward the top of the 
> neck. Sibley shows this plumage for non-breeding males from June through 
> September, when Buffleheads are much less commonly reported around Cayuga 
> Lake, so I don’t recall seeing it well before. 
> 
> But why would he wear it now in late February? I have 2 guesses.
> 
> Perhaps this is an adult male who for some reason has not molted out the 
> non-breeding plumage on time. In other words, this individual bird and Sibley 
> disagree on the timing of this molt. 
> 
> My other guess is that perhaps the reason we saw it in late February was that 
> this was a young male. Sibley shows first winter males (“Nov-Jul, variable”) 
> as extremely similar to females: The only difference I see is that the male’s 
> head is more black while the female’s is very dark gray, but each has 
> essentially the same oblong white mark behind the eye, and plain gray on 
> sides, breast & neck. 
> 
> But at some point the young male must transition to typical male breeding 
> plumage. Do they go through an intermediate stage in late winter which looks 
> like the non-breeding male in summer? 
> 
> If anyone else knows better why this June-to-September plumage would be 
> evident in late February, I am very curious. By the way, his feet and legs 
> were also dull in color rather than the bright pink that breeding-plumage 
> males show. 
> 
> - - Dave Nutter
> 
> On Feb 24, 2019, at 5:14 PM, bob mcguire  > wrote:
> 
>> In spite of the dire weather prediction for today, four folks showed up to 
>> join me for a drive around the lake. I will save a full report for the CBC 
>> March newsletter, but want to share the highlights now. A FOY 
>> (first-of-year) KILLDEER greeted us as we got out of the cars at Myers, 
>> foraging on the gravel bar along side the creek. We also had a variety of 
>> ducks, including 3 Long-tailed Ducks and 3 White-winged Scoters (birds that 
>> have been there for the past few weeks). 
>> 
>> We received the RBA message of a BOHEMIAN WAXWING in Groton, which would 
>> have been a life bird for several of us, and decided to chase it. By the 
>> time we got there the flock of 35 waxwings (as reported) had dwindled to 32, 
>> and the Bohemian was missing!
>> 
>> Somewhat disappointed, we continued north and encountered a large flock of 
>> Snow Buntings (approx 500) along Davis Road. They were far back in the corn 
>> stubble, constantly in flight and, try as we might, we were unable to pick 
>> out any Lapland Longspurs.
>> 
>> Aurora Bay was empty of grebes; there was no sign of Friday’s Gyrfalcon in 
>> the vicinity of Great Gully (didn’t really expect it to be that 
>> cooperative). 
>> 
>> We found a few Green-winged Teal along the shore to the north of Frontenac 
>> Park. There was nothing out of the ordinary on the ponds in Union Springs 
>> nor on the water at Mud Lock. 
>> 
>> Next we checked the Finger Lakes airport for Snowy Owls (none) and the area 
>> of the quarry for Gyrfalcon (nothing). 
>> 
>> The view from Sheldarake Park was unremarkable. And from there we ran ahead 
>> of the cold front (wind and rain) all the way home.
>> 
>> Bob McGuire
>> --
>> 

[cayugabirds-l] a solitary Common Redpoll--Stevenson Rd Compost drive

2019-02-03 Thread AB Clark
At 210 pm today, coming in on driveway from Stevenson Compost mounds, just N of 
the gateway to the pheasant pens, a single Common Redpoll sat in the sun as 
high as one can get in the small trees there.  After giving me good looks and 
some distant pics, it flew S toward where a bunch of (technical term) House 
Sparrows were sitting, similarly in the sun.  Saw no others going in or out 
about 330pm.

Anne Clark
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[cayugabirds-l] Rough-legged hawk W and E of Warren at Cherry la today 2 Feb 19

2019-02-02 Thread AB Clark
At approximately 1430, a rough-legged hawk was hunting the field that makes up 
the SW quadrat of Cherry La x Warren Rd. It sat watching from trees on N side 
of Cherry la, then (disturbed by my stopping car) it moved a bit W along 
Cherry, then East to sit on airport fencing along Warren’s E edge, S of Cherry 
La intersection.  

Sitting or in flight, there seemed to be lots of white patches.  Mostly though 
salt frosted windows, I managed to get some REALLY bad pictures that confirmed 
a bright light patch on brow and possibly around throat. Quite a distinctive 
head.

Anne
  
Anne B. Clark
Freeville NY 13068



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[cayugabirds-l] Ash seeds and blackbirds

2018-10-20 Thread AB Clark
Another eager cluster of redwinged blackbirds is eating the ash seeds from the 
apparently still healthy ash trees.  This has happened several times this 
month.  

Maybe this is well appreciated, but I had no idea that ash seeds were such a 
resource for fall feeding birds.

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] "raven"--the rest of the story

2018-08-25 Thread AB Clark
Several people immediately offered help in retrieving the “raven” reported from 
the Enfield area.  We were organizing capture, but after I got back from 
Binghamton around 630 pm, I called the homeowner, who went out to find that it 
was now dead.

This morning Nancy Cusmano very kindly retrieved the body for a hand-over 
downtown—and yes, it was NOT A RAVEN, it was an American crow, an adult, very 
unlikely to have been hit by a car and thus a good West Nile Virus candidate. 
It was reported to have “dropped from the sky”, similar to what people told me 
back in 2002-2006, when I was doing surveilance for Broome County. 

The crow will be tested for WNV.  
Be aware that West Nile has already killed some of our crows in the Cayuga 
Heights areas and is of course widespread, if not intense.  Avoid dusk biting 
mosquitoes and please dump those warm, stagnant bird baths and buckets from 
last week’s rain!

Thanks to all who called or emailed.  I really appreciated the offers.

Anne
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] Raven needs help--near Trumansberg

2018-08-24 Thread AB Clark
I just got a message via Suzanne Broderick that there is a raven down and 
acting “dazed” in a yard on Enfield Center Rd West, near Trumansberg.  I am 
currently finishing my day at Binghamton University and unable to get there in 
any reasonable time to try to capture and take to Wildlife Clinic.

If anyone is in Trumansberg area to help or could go there to grab bird, I have 
the yard owner’s name and phone number—just call my cell phone below.  Large 
towel for capture and cat carrier will probably be necessary.  Not sure how 
dazed it is.

Be aware—it could be West Nile virus since this is active and killing our crows 
in Ithaca these past few weeks. Sadly!  I can give advice here if you call.

Thanks to anyone who can help.  

Anne


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] seeking mockingbirds

2018-08-16 Thread AB Clark
There is often one at the East end of Stevenson road, around the house on the 
south side of the road, or somewhere roadside along that stretch between Turkey 
Hill Rd and the fields just beyond (west of) the south-of-road house.

best,

Anne
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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> On Aug 15, 2018, at 10:09 PM, Heidi King  wrote:
> 
> Hello fellow birders,
> 
> My daughter (who is almost 6) has been working all summer to complete a 
> NYS-DEC youth birding challenge.
> 
> The last bird on her list is a Northern Mockingbird. I'd love to help her 
> complete the challenge, but have not spotted any myself this season.
> 
> Can anyone suggest a semi-reliable spot to see a Mockingbird to encourage 
> this young birder? 
> 
> Thanks so much for any tips!
> Heidi King
> 
> 
> Details on the challenge here: 
> http://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/109900.html 
> 
> --
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[cayugabirds-l] fledglings, fledglings, fledglings

2018-06-28 Thread AB Clark
And fleeing avoidant parents!

In the last 2 days, have watched tree swallow fledglings, cedar waxwing 
fledglings, bluebird fledglings, robin fledglings, redwinged blackbird 
fledglings, grackle fledglings, American crow fledglings and am currently 
listening to the incessant pleading of red tailed hawk fledglings.  The house 
wrens are back in every box for round two, apparently.

I watched one of a brood of recently fledged tree swallows take off over the 
Hile School Rd wetland, find its parent in mid-air, follow until the parent 
turned and they did a pas de deux while apparently the fledger got fed in 
mid-air.  Bills opened and touched. Then the little one flew back to the small 
tree where its siblings were all perched. 

Waiting to see some green heron fledglings in the wetland.

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] Squirrels, birds and a previous thread

2018-06-08 Thread AB Clark
Sat and watched a white pine and its neighboring small maple, as the sun 
disappeared.  At least three little phantom shapes were working the trees, 
especially the pine.  One or more was/were  red squirrels and I think one was a 
chipmunk but maybe all were red squirrels (young?  to be so close together?).  
In any case, they did a very thorough job of running along branches to the 
tips, including the one where a robin built in May and apparently lost the nest 
contents soon thereafter.  The nest is now on the ground.  

That they find (and eat) bird nest contents is no accident…these little guys 
looked practiced and spatially efficient.

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Clear cutting under powerlines

2018-06-08 Thread AB Clark
The powerlines from Warren Road to Dankert Park were also brush hogged and 
cleared of similarly dense growth—many birds along there.  About 10 days ago.

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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> On Jun 8, 2018, at 9:28 AM, Karen Edelstein  wrote:
> 
> I was dismayed to see that NYSEG has been clearcutting/brush-hogging 
> vegetation down to bare ground under the powerlines on Salmon Creek Rd. With 
> the nesting season still well in process, I'm very concerned about the 
> probable mortality of birds that has resulted in this area of (formerly) 
> dense growth.
> 
> While I do not know whether this vegetation removal is happening elsewhere in 
> the county, I would like to see if we can prevail on NYSEG to delay cutting 
> at least until later in the summer. 
> 
> Your thoughts? 
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[cayugabirds-l] White-crowned Sparrow--just OOB

2018-05-01 Thread AB Clark
This morning, a lovely pair of Purple Finches and a pair of Red Bellied 
Woodpeckers were using our feeders  along with Chipping Sparrows (and red 
squirrels), when  suddenly a White-crowned Sparrow appeared on the ground below.

No Tree Sparrows today.  One at least was still here on Sunday.  

Have been meaning to mention:  in the Fall Creek watershed, visible off Red 
Mill Rd, looking East, the Great Blue Heron rookery is active with probably a 
dozen nests active and occupied by herons—for at least 2 weeks now.  
Apparently, as reported by residents next to swamp, there was a Bald Eagle 
regularly sitting on a high nest structure, but it left  when the herons took 
up residence. 

anne

Anne B Clark
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Thanks for Pine Warbler replies

2018-04-16 Thread AB Clark
A male has been frequenting my feeders for two days, with my first Chipping 
Sparrow.  The warbler is focused on the suet, strongly!  No trouble with that 
little pointy bill.  

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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> On Apr 15, 2018, at 5:58 PM, Annette Nadeau  wrote:
> 
> I appreciate the replies I received about the Pine Warbler. The chilly temps 
> make a warbler sighting seem early, I guess. 
> 
> Annette 
> -- from my phone
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[cayugabirds-l] Ring-necked Duck pair at Hile School Marsh

2018-04-10 Thread AB Clark
Very pretty and good views, although I’d guess they are unlikely to stay long.  
A regular parade of Hooded Mergansers, Bufflehead, Wood Ducks and of course 
Mallards have been there on various days over last week. Two Belted Kingfishers 
continue also.

I have seen no Tree Swallows out here, but may not have been looking at the 
right time of day.  

Along Ed Hill Road going S from Hile School Rd were three Kestrels spread out 
along the wires, near last year’s nest site.  Maybe a juvenile still  hanging 
from last year?  

Anne
Anne B Clark
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Phoebe

2018-03-31 Thread AB Clark
Phoebe being incessant, Sandra Place dead end, today at 1530h.  

American crow nest nearby—I received severe reprimands for even thinking of 
going near it---the sort of harsh crow scolds reserved for cats and lesser 
vermin.  Pretty insulting.

But the phoebe just flipped around over the little stream there, singing…

Anne


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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> On Mar 31, 2018, at 1:15 PM, Laura Stenzler  wrote:
> 
> Phoebe at Long Point State Park. 1:15 Saturday. 
> 
> Laura
> 
> Laura Stenzler
> l...@cornell.edu
> 
> --
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[cayugabirds-l] Crow Spies Wanted

2018-03-14 Thread AB Clark
Hi everyone

It has now gotten to that time of year when crows have already been making some 
tentative moves with or without sticks and a few non-snowy days will probably 
be enough to spark nesting activity.

We crow-people would love to hear about any crows in Ithaca that are breaking 
sticks (funny, loosewinged behavior in outer branches will catch your eye), 
carrying sticks or going in and out of a spruce or pine.  

While we focus on many families around Cayuga Heights, our crows do disperse 
and we always look for new families to observe. Obviously a group with tagged 
crows is of special interest, but I or Kevin will take any reports.

We would like to know where the crow was (address or x street or other such as 
“NW corner of Dankert Park”) and if possible what direction it flew with stick, 
or location of tree it went to.  

Just applying the “many eyes principle” to a group of bird-observers!

Thanks—Anne

PS for those of you who travel N on Hanshaw from 13, there is a green tagged 
female 9U who joined a group there about 3 years ago and has raised young in 
’16 and ’17.  She and her group live between Etna and Neimi roads, closer to 
Etna perhaps.  Any insights on HER would be great! I keep trying, and thought I 
had the site in 2016, but couldn’t pinpoint the tree.  I saw her on Sunday...
 
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Bird Signs of Earlier Spring?

2018-02-14 Thread AB Clark
There are certainly more knowledgeable ornithologists to answer but this 
touches on some questions we are trying to answer with crows over 30 years.  
(Over that time, no directional change in average winter-spring temps, in part 
because 1990 is a VERY warm year.)  

Gonadal development is typically related to day length and the direction of day 
length change in birds, and goes on regardless of temperatures.  

There are some semi-known, semi-hypothesized mechanisms by which birds detect 
longer days. Essentially it goes something like this:  sunrise re- sets the 
bird’s “endogenous” or innate rhythm of behavior and neural activities.  (That 
is another story..)  After that there is a period in which the bird is happily 
unresponsive to dark vs light.  But that period ends about 4 in the afternoon, 
and after that the bird is increasily senstitive to light being present.  If it 
isn’t, as for short days around the solstice at this latitude, the bird just 
goes to sleep without worrying about hormones (so to speak).  BUT if the light 
is still there when it is sensitive later in the day, that information 
stimulates or begins to stimulate gonadal development.  As days go by, the 
other part of the cue is the lengthening or later availability of light:  the 
day is not only 11 hours long but it is 2 min longer than yesterday. 

Note that birds that are spending the winter near the equator cannot be using 
this mechanism as a decision as to when to migrate.  The circannual clock is 
probably involved here, although birds could then come part way and finish 
migration using day length.( I forget the recent literature here.)  But birds 
that are migrating definitely don’t benefit from making big gonads to carry 
along on migration. 

Actual decisions to move to nesting habitat, develop testes and sing or begin 
developing ova preparatory to laying eggs have to be more fine tuned…to weather 
(not climate), to personal condition and food resources, etc. So the whole 
thing is a layered process of information gathering, some quite codified, some 
quite flexible.

OK—I am no specialist in this, so I will be happy to bow to more educated 
answers, or to try to find answers to specific questions.  For those of you who 
do “skulling” to age birds, that thin skull permits light to penetrate directly 
to the pineal gland in birds…something mammals cannot do, so they use an 
eye-brain connection.

Anne

PS for birds like budgerigars in Australia that breed erratically when there is 
rain, rain seems to cue migration to breeding grounds and greening foods (wild 
millet for instance) and dark nest holes spur ovarian development in females. 
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Feb 14, 2018, at 10:00 AM, psaracin  wrote:
> 
> Thanks Dave but that data does not address the issue of daylength (which has 
> remained essentially the,same for the time period you mentioned). Again I say 
> the behavior is much more related to photoperiod (day length) than any other 
> thing.
> Anyone else care to weigh in.
> 
> 
> 
> Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
> 
>  Original message 
> From: david nicosia 
> Date: 2/14/18 8:30 AM (GMT-05:00)
> To: Sandy Wold , Upstate NY Birding digest 
> , psaracin 
> Subject: Re: [cayugabirds-l] Bird Signs of Earlier Spring?
> 
> I have heard Cardinals, titmice, chickadees, and carolina wrens sing on 
> clear, sunny mornings with light winds and temperatures near zero in February 
> for years. Plus, looking at the long term temperature records for Ithaca NY 
> (from the Cornell U. site), surprisingly there has been no long term trend in 
> temperatures, even in the winter. I checked Jan-March, no trend and annually, 
> which was slightly negative(probably not statistically significant). This 
> means that from the late 1800s to present, there has been no warming and 
> possibly even slight cooling at Ithaca! There has been a warming trend since 
> the 1960s, which was the coolest part of the 20th century. Many people are 
> comparing today's temperatures locally to the 60s.  If you look before that 
> time period it was warmer and for some locations, like Ithaca, slightly 
> warmer than today. So the argument about earlier spring weather locally does 
> not apply to our birds based on this long running dataset. Of course, this is 
> just locally. Not speaking to what is happening globally! 
> 
> On Tuesday, February 13, 2018, 11:13:11 PM EST, psaracin 
>  wrote:
> 
> 
> Sandy, I, too, have heard titmice and cardinals. I believe such behavior is 
> more tied to hormonal responses brought on by increased daylength but am no 
> ornitholigist.
> 
> 
> 
> Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
> 
>  Original message 
> From: Sandy 

[cayugabirds-l] Black Vulture foursome at Compost Facility

2018-01-30 Thread AB Clark
At 1320h, my grad student Connor reported that all four cold Black Vultures 
were sitting in edge trees/hedges  just SW of the leachate ponds at the 
Stevenson Road Cornell Composting Facility. 

I am afraid all he had to offer was peanuts. 

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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Re: [cayugabirds-l] the four Black Vultures

2017-12-28 Thread AB Clark
I too went back through Bluewing as well as CBL, and repeat sightings of 2 BLVU 
in Broome followed the 7, as were sightings of 2 in Cayuga Basin, several times 
through March and early April.  Then I can find no sightings (although I didn’t 
check ebird) until late summer, when they started being seen around the Compost 
(1 and 2 at a time). 

Wonder if some tracking through lists and eBird could suggest where a pair 
could have bred not far from the purview of both lists and within a day’s sail 
of the compost.   I COULD check the Breeding Bird Altas…if I weren’t going to 
sail down to Binghamton for a few hours.

anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Dec 28, 2017, at 9:59 AM, David Nicosia  wrote:
> 
> We had 7 Black Vultures in Vestal NY last spring just south of Binghamton 
> which was a record high for Broome County. We also had another bird reported 
> in the spring in Chenango Bridge NY. 
> I also heard from the Chemung Valley folks that they had 8 BVs this spring a 
> new record for them as well. Who knows in 10 years they may be regular in 
> central NY. TVs were rare at one point many decades ago and they have made a 
> remarkable expansion north. It would be cool to see both regularly up here!  
> 
> On Wed, Dec 27, 2017 at 9:33 PM, Kevin J. McGowan  > wrote:
> Maybe. They do breed in the state and have become more common over the last 
> few years.
> 
> Kevin
> 
> 
> 
> 
> From: bounce-122158375-3493...@list.cornell.edu 
>  
>  > on behalf of psaracin 
> >
> Sent: Wednesday, December 27, 2017 5:24 PM
> To: Kevin J. McGowan; CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: Re: [cayugabirds-l] the four Black Vultures
>  
> Hi Kevin. Is the vultures' presence a sign of their creeping advance into the 
> state?
> Thanks.
> Pete
> 
> 
> 
> Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
> 
>  Original message 
> From: "Kevin J. McGowan" >
> Date: 12/27/17 3:41 PM (GMT-05:00)
> To: CAYUGABIRDS-L  >
> Subject: [cayugabirds-l] the four Black Vultures
> 
> Yesterday I got a good look at the four Black Vultures that have been hanging 
> around. They were sitting together on one of the compost piles at the Cornell 
> facility on Stevenson Road. Two of the four had very black faces and feathers 
> higher up on the back of the head, indicating that they are young birds 
> hatched this year. The other two had gray, wrinkled faces of adults.
> 
>  
> I saw both juveniles interact with an adult, pecking at each other’s bill in 
> what looked like an “affectionate” way. (We use the term “affiliative 
> behavior” for things like grooming and other positive interactions.) They may 
> have done some brief allopreening, but I couldn’t tell for sure.
> 
>  
> Black Vultures are known to have a complex social system where they associate 
> and cooperate with kin. Young Black Vultures are known to hang out with their 
> parents up until the next breeding season.
> 
>  
> I suspect this group is a mated pair with two offspring. That would explain 
> why we always see the four together.
> 
>  
> Also present was the leucistic Turkey Vulture that has been seen off and on 
> for a number of years.
> 
>  
> I have photos at http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S41325840 
> .
> 
>  
> Kevin
> 
>  
>  
> Do you know about our other distance-learning opportunities? Visit Bird 
> Academy , 
> https://academy.allaboutbirds.org/courses/ 
>   to see our list of courses.
> 
> 
>  
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Bald Eagle - Etna, NY

2017-12-21 Thread AB Clark
We frequently have bald eagles out here between 38 and Ed Hill Road on Hile 
School Rd.  I haven’t been home enough to note whether they are settling down 
in the woods next door as they did last year and year before.  During 2015 we 
had at least 3…2 adults or near adults and a juvenile.  But one or more 
regularly come overhead, sometimes soar toward the great blue heron rookery off 
Red Mill Rd, or out toward Fall Creek Rd near Ed HIll intersection.  (Notably, 
that rookery was totally gone this past summer, although I cannot figure out 
how all the nests were suddenly gone.  I suspect “management”, but no one 
around here has been able to tell me anything.)

There are a lot of “gut piles” around now, from deer dressing, so I am sure the 
pickings have been reasonably good for scavengers.


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Dec 21, 2017, at 12:13 AM, cl...@juno.com wrote:
> 
> We have seen eagles flying over our yard in the past three months, but today 
> as I was driving over the Etna Mills bridge crossing Fall Creek, there was an 
> adult eagle sitting in a large tree directly overlooking the stream bed. 
> Watched for about 10 minutes until traffic forced us to leave.
>  
> Colleen Richards
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> 
> 
> Duchess Says Goodbye To Royal Family
> risingstarnewspaper.com
>  
> http://thirdpartyoffers.juno.com/TGL3142/5a3b4325ad533432524fast02duc
>  


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[cayugabirds-l] Pine siskin at feeders--just oob

2017-11-25 Thread AB Clark
The first I have seen this year. One female (no obvious yellow anywhere) and 
did not stay long.  

Earlier today, A small flock of small birds went overhead, near Ed Hill x Hile 
School Rd, that I couldn’t identify at the time, as fast moving silhouettes.  
Now I am thinking that they might have been siskins. 

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] Bluebirds--Prospecting

2017-11-24 Thread AB Clark
Checking out the nest boxes used by wrens and tree swallows last year.  I think 
the holes are too small…but they seem quite intrigued.

anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] Tree Sparrow at my feeder

2017-11-08 Thread AB Clark
Among a lot of feisty House Finches, I think it is just one American Tree 
Sparrow—the first I have seen this fall.  But the flock is flitting in and out, 
so maybe more.

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Where are all my feeder birds

2017-10-25 Thread AB Clark
I think it is extremely reassuring that, when the wild foods are ample, the 
feeder-aware birds still prefer to use them.  Superior nutrition and 
nutritional diversity, I am sure.

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Oct 25, 2017, at 11:54 AM, Marc Devokaitis  wrote:
> 
> Hi All,
> 
> Re-opening this thread--I thought I'd share with the list a comment from 
> Donald Leopold, Chair of the Department of Environmental and Forest Biology 
> at SUNY-ESF (I was asking him about something else, but this came up.)
> 
> "Not only are conifers producing an extraordinary abundance of cones but I 
> have never seen such an abundance of walnuts, hickories, oak acorns, sugar 
> maple and white ash samaras, and other tree fruits and seeds. Interestingly, 
> I’ve seen this above average production across the Northeast."
> 
> 
> 
> Hopefully this goes a long way to explaining the increase in decreases this 
> year.
> 
> 
> 
> Marc Devokaitis
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> On Wed, Oct 18, 2017 at 12:46 PM, Barbara B. Eden  > wrote:
> For the past 2 months the resident birds that I daily feed have dropped in 
> population This is the first time this has happened and even those pesky 
> squirrels have left I live in Cayuga Heights and my backyard is a bird 
> friendly habitat
> Any thoughts would be appreciated 
> Thanks
> Barbara Eden
> 
> Sent using OWA for iPhone
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[cayugabirds-l] Not birds--Painted lady butterfly obs across Eastern US

2017-09-24 Thread AB Clark
Both Cayuglists are noting the painted lady explosion.  

And interestingly, if you type "painted lady butterfly" into a search engine 
right now, you will find that there are “wow—all the painted ladies” reports 
from Minnesota, Jamestown, and many more places.  What kind of synchrony is 
this?


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] Crows, WNV and another plea for information

2017-09-10 Thread AB Clark
HI Everyone,

I hope this isn’t overuse of the List to ask for help:our banded crow 
population in and around Ithaca is suffering from the WNV plague—again, and 
strongly.  We are losing tagged and untagged-but-known family members.  Since 
birds also travel to forage at this time of year, we are trying hard to 
document whether a bird ostensibly “seen looking sick” is really dead.We 
are collaborating with the Wildlife Health Unit and are able to get them tested 
to confirm whether they died of WNV.

So—we really appreciate any alerts to crows seen dead or looking sick or “odd” 
in and near Ithaca, especially around Cayuga Heights, the Cornell Campus,  
Forest Home area, the Pine Tree-Mitchell-Ellis Hollow areas,  Sapsucker Woods 
road across to Brown and the Airport areas.  I am only too happy to investigate 
a false alarm, rather than miss a sick crow that then “disappears”, cause 
unknown.  It was really helpful that several people alerted us to a dying crow 
at Boces last week, which I was able to find the next morning. 

Currently, we are missing purple-tagged (white letters) crows “PC” (just N of 
Boces) and “SZ” (Lexington-Burleigh area) and an untagged but banded crow in 
the vicinity of Hanshaw between Kay St and Orchard, within this past week.  Up 
to 5 unbanded crows have disappeared in the last few weeks, after other family 
members died—along Warren on both sides of 13. 

Thanks for any help—emails to Kevin or I (best my academic email  
acl...@binghamton.edu ) or texts/calls to my cell 
phone below are all fine.  Suzanne Broderick (smb4...@aol.com) will also take 
the info and make sure reports were investigated. 

Anne
 
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] Kestrel, Barn Swallows and Crow (OOB)

2017-08-17 Thread AB Clark
I watched an interesting sequence around 7 am and got some of it in some really 
bad pictures.  For Basin lovers, all birds in question also use the part of Ed 
Hill Road that is within the Basin.  Indeed the Kestrel may be one of the young 
ones raised in house eaves on Ed Hill Road, and if not, a parent.  (I have to 
see the pictures on my laptop before deciding)

A Kestrel was perched atop a sunning-favored dead tree.  This tree is used by 
multiple species, from Mourning Doves to Redtail Hawks—early am and late pm.  
Good view of sun in both directions?

It was being dive bombed by two very aggressive Barn Swallows and was raising 
its wings repeatedly to protect its head.  (Empathy…our barn door in my 
childhood was guarded by defensive Barn Swallows)   But it refused to leave 
between attacks.  I don’t know that I have ever seen Barn Swallows swooping a 
falcon or hawk.

Then an American Crow arrived, swooped down and that was too much.  The Kestrel 
left.   The crow didn’t even land, but apparently drove off the Kestrel on 
general principles, and continued on toward the field, barely getting off 
course.

I guess young Barn Swallows in particular might make occasional Kestrel prey?  
I watched a Kestrel the other evening capturing something high in the air 
column, perhaps Green Darner dragonflies.

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] Virginia Rails being obvious (out of basin)

2017-08-02 Thread AB Clark
Virginia rails (2) that have been recently foraging in the Hile School Rd 
wetlands are very vocal and fairly fearless and picture ready this past week.  
I have found them along the S edge of unpaved road, on the east side of the 
wetlands, in mixed willow and grasses. 

The young green herons, kingfishers, cedar waxwings and kingbirds have also 
been fun to watch and listen to. Many species, including a catbird this 
morning, seem to be orienting toward the water surface and grabbing insects off 
it. 

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Hungry youngsters!

2017-08-02 Thread AB Clark
If I may chime in: 

 because our crow families do have known territories, and families include 
unbanded birds, it would be great to have anyone finding an UNbanded dead crow 
in the Cornell Campus-Cayuga Heights-Sapsucker Woods-Airport areas text or 
email Kevin or me before disposing of it entirely.   We can use tail shape, 
molt, etc to infer which bird it might be, and potentially connect a missing 
family member with the death. 

And these days of August-September, our crows travel widely, off territory.  
Not all our banded crows have tags….these do come off.  So a tagged crow SHOULD 
have bands, but a banded crow might not have tags.  Please check those legs 
before chucking, in any area. 

Thanks from the CRG researchers!

Anne
  
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Aug 1, 2017, at 7:37 PM, Kevin J. McGowan  wrote:
> 
> Do they call at 5 in the morning? That's what my local crows do. I love 
> crows, as most people know, but I'd rather they weren't so vocal so early.
> 
> Just a note on the crow breeding season this year. Good number of breeding 
> families after a big hit from West Nile virus in 2012&2013. Earliest ever WNV 
> positive deaths this year, but not much since the first of May. But, now is 
> the traditional time for WNV to hit hard, the hot days of late summer. We 
> know that WNV is here, so the state isn't too interested in testing crows or 
> other birds that you might find dead in your yard (just bury them). But, if 
> it's a dead tagged or banded crow, please, please do let me know. We (the 
> Crow Research Group) are still trying to track death and survival of crows as 
> best we can.
> 
> We tagged this year's cohort with orange tags with black letters. Some people 
> seem to be seeing the tags as red, so be open for that. Any sightings would 
> be most appreciated.
> 
> Best,
> 
> Kevin
> 
> 
> Best,
> 
> Kevin
> 
> From: bounce-121694030-3493...@list.cornell.edu 
>  
>  > on behalf of Geo Kloppel 
> >
> Sent: Tuesday, August 1, 2017 5:08 PM
> To: CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: [cayugabirds-l] Hungry youngsters!
>  
> Lots of hungry young birds around, but I especially feel for this fledgling 
> Broad-winged Hawk, whose wails are not only piteous (all Broad-wings sound 
> that way to me) but also right in my ears, because the bird favors the trees 
> that shade my workshop.
> 
> Most years the Broad-wing fledglings take up begging stations several hundred 
> yards away, overlooking secluded Maple Avenue, where their parents hunt, but 
> this year is different for some reason... 
> 
> -Geo
> --
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> cayugabirds-l Thread; Date ; Earlier messages; Messages by Date 2017/07/12 
> Re: [cayugabirds-l] Two questions Linda Orkin
> 
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Bald Red-winged Blackbird

2017-07-19 Thread AB Clark
Could be molt, and it might be exacerbated by a fight with another male.  Seems 
late in the year for this, but I have watched fights between males (typically 
in late April or early May)  that resulted in chunks of feather pulled out and 
bald or partly bald males.



> On Jul 19, 2017, at 6:33 PM, Annette Nadeau  wrote:
> 
> I have a bald Red-winged Blackbird visiting one of my feeders this evening 
> here in Brooktondale. I've seen bald Blue Jays, but this is a first for me. 
> He looks fine otherwise, so I'm guessing this is a molting phase. 
> 
> 
> Annette 
> -- from my phone
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Gallimule tough love (I hope)

2017-07-06 Thread AB Clark
Hi John et al,

this is well-known gallinule “parental” behavior.  As many will know, birds 
often lay more eggs and hatch more young than they can rear. The theoretical 
explanation is that in a good year, when the healthiest as well as most young 
can be raised, parents benefit by being ready with that number in the nest.  
But food or conditions will be less than good in many years. Probably most such 
young die without direct parental actions, simply through feeding rules that 
favor larger chicks, or because smaller young run out of fat fuel sooner during 
lean patches and stop begging and die.  

But gallinules (moorhens in Europe) are known for directly reducing the number 
of young, using a behavior “touseling” (yes, it even has a name) in which 
adults start to peck at and drive off/down select young.  According to the 
literature, they are likely to select less brightly colored young.  The color 
is related to the health and immune status of the chick, so they appear to be 
selecting the lower quality young.  

In some raptors, pelicans, boobies, and egrets, larger siblings are usually the 
ones to peck and often kill their smaller siblings.

Anne
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Jul 6, 2017, at 7:32 AM, k...@empacc.net wrote:
> 
> At the Van Dyne Spoor wetlands yesterday we observed what seemed vey unusual 
> gallinule behavior. An adult was swimming along up a small channel in the 
> surface weeds while three young were sort of lazing around nearby. A second 
> gallinule was a distance off.
> 
> Suddenly, the adult accelerated and altered course toward one of the 
> youngsters. When they were close, the adult came up out of the water and 
> crash dived on top of the kid! The adult quickly surfaced and, despite 
> watching for some time, we never saw the young reappear. The other two kids 
> and the other adult ignored the whole affair.
> 
> I hope the youngster just retreated underwater to heavy cover.
> 
> John
> 
> -- 
> John and Sue Gregoire
> Field Ornithologists
> Kestrel Haven Migration Observatory
> 5373 Fitzgerald Rd
> Burdett, NY 14818
> 42.443508000, -76.758202000
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Gallinules climbing cattails for pollen

2017-06-22 Thread AB Clark
That is so cool!

I recall hearing that during WWII, cattail pollen was explored as a protein 
source, a way to fortify breads, etc.  We have used it in bread, although it 
wasn’t something that led me to spend time collecting it in quantity.  So the 
gallinules might be making a very good choice!

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Jun 22, 2017, at 8:14 PM, Dave K  wrote:
> 
> On the AutoLoop at MNWR today , I saw two different Common Gallinules climb 
> cattails to get to the pollen.
> They were eating it themselves and also feeding it to their young.
> The 30 sec picknit also shows some Gallinule parenting.
> https://www.flickr.com/photos/105424358@N06/34664986423/in/datetaken-public/ 
> 
> Gallinule and pollen 6-22-17 MNWR Auto Loop 
> 
>  
> 
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] For List interests: FYI--Tick disease program from BU specialists

2017-05-20 Thread AB Clark
Julian has been working with Ralph Garruto on studies of ticks, lyme and other 
diseases around the campus of Binghamton University, and monitoring tick 
abundance patterns, infection patterns, etc.  Not quite as abundant as in the 
scrubby areas of Ithaca, and notably, least infected in the Nature Preserve!  
Anyway, if you are interested in learning more, here is the program info.
Anne

Dr. Julian Shepherd and Dr. Michael Leonard
"Biological and Ecological Aspects of Lyme and Similar Tick-associated Diseases"
Thursday, June 15  7pm
Hubbard Auditorium, Tioga County Building 2nd Floor, 56 Main Street, Owego

Dr. Julian Shepherd, associate professor of biology at Binghamton University, 
will address biological and ecological aspects of Lyme and similar diseases, 
and Dr. Michael Leonard, medical director of BU Health Services, will address 
medical and epidemiological aspects of these diseases.  Lyme disease is 
vectored by black-legged ticks (alias deer ticks), which have only become 
widespread in our area in the last 6-8 years.  These ticks also vector several 
other less widespread diseases, such as anaplasmosis and babesiosis.  While 
rarely lethal, all of these diseases can have painful short-term and serious 
long-term effects.  We will discuss the involvement of wild mammals, especially 
mice and deer, in spreading the disease, impact of the disease on humans, and 
measures to avoid or reduce the incidence and effects of disease.
 
Sponsored by the Sierra Club Tioga County Task Force and RAFT (Residents Allied 
for the Future of Tioga). For more information, contact: Erin Riddle, 
riddlerid...@gmail.com , 607-372-5503 (texts 
accepted).
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] White-crowned sparrows stop by-just out of basin

2017-05-09 Thread AB Clark
Four white-crowned sparrows are dining at our feeders this morning.  It appears 
to be two males and two females, going purely on brightness and a bit of 
behavior (mild aggression between two brightest).

Also a female purple finch, song sparrows, chipping sparrow(s), downy and hairy 
woodpeckers, mourning doves (displacing white-crowns by waddling at them), 
bluejays and a pair of redwinged blackbirds. 
 The female redwing is apparently seriously considering nesting in the iris 
that are tall and abundant in our swimmingpool-converted-to-pond.  This morning 
the male apparent agrees on her choice and was displaying to her amidst the 
iris leaves. She looks young—little color to her face, quite stripy but dull. 
Protection from chipmunk predation will be the problem.

Anne
Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] E. Kingbird at Hile School Rd Wetland

2017-05-07 Thread AB Clark
May 6th evening—David saw our first E. Kingbird insect foraging on edges of the 
Hile School Rd Wetland/Marshes, along with Tree Swallows, at least.

May 2—I had a Spotted Sandpiper skipping about on high points, near the road as 
it crosses.  Water very high.  Beavers keep rebuilding after temporary lowering 
of dam at points, plus rain and the runoff provided by the horrible road 
maintenance job that Dryden did last summer.

Anne

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Further info Yellow House Finch

2017-05-06 Thread AB Clark
I am not sure what specific berries we lacked during winter that would 
contribute, but of course, purple finches and house finches could have been 
influenced by diets south of here.  

On the other hand, it appears that carotenoids that end up purple-red are the 
result of conversion of yellower pigments into purple or, in other species, 
cardinal-red.  

Here is a news report on a few papers cited at the bottom: 
https://phys.org/news/2016-05-genes-enable-birds-red.html

Genetic differences (defects perhaps) can result in yellow cardinals and 
perhaps the yellow-orange of finches.  Even in the classic house finch story, 
Kevin McGraw and others have shown that differences between males are not just 
dietary, but result from their genetically influenced abilities to sequester 
and then push the carotenoids into their feathers.  Conversions within 
carotenoid biochemical structures happen along the way, so that different 
species eating similar carotenoids end up with different plumage color. So the 
simple idea that brighter males were better at gathering carotenoid-rich foods 
turns out to be too simple.  And females sharing these “sequester more 
carotenoid” genes put more into their egg yolks, which may protect rapidly 
growing embryos from free radicals.

Now—why one would suddenly get some genetically odd purple and house finches in 
the same spring…I have no idea!

And this is probably way more than anyone wanted to know!  

Anne
Current Biology, Lopes, Johnson, and Toomey et al.: "Genetic Basis for Red 
Coloration in Birds" 
www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(16)30401-8 
 / 
dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2016.03.076 

Current Biology, Mundy and Stapley et al.: "Red Ketocarotenoid Pigmentation in 
the Zebra Finch Is Controlled by a Cytochrome P450 Gene Cluster" 
www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(16)30400-6 
 / 
dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2016.04.047 


Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2016-05-genes-enable-birds-red.html#jCp 

Current Biology, Lopes, Johnson, and Toomey et al.: "Genetic Basis for Red 
Coloration in Birds" 
www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(16)30401-8 
 / 
dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2016.03.076 

Current Biology, Mundy and Stapley et al.: "Red Ketocarotenoid Pigmentation in 
the Zebra Finch Is Controlled by a Cytochrome P450 Gene Cluster" 
www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(16)30400-6 
 / 
dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2016.04.047 


Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2016-05-genes-enable-birds-red.html#jCp 

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On May 5, 2017, at 6:17 PM, Linda Orkin  wrote:
> 
> I would imagine no one can be surprised at poor condition in these birds this 
> year with the dearth of carotenoid source fruits and berries over this past 
> fall and winter. This would not be permanent but could be corrected with 
> better diet, correct Kevin? 
> 
> Thx 
> 
> Linda Orkin
> 
> Sent from my iPhone
> 
> On May 5, 2017, at 5:23 PM, Kevin J. McGowan  > wrote:
> 
>> No, the most likely explanation is that it is a young male in relatively 
>> poor condition. The captive experiments showed that poor diet makes for more 
>> yellow and less red birds. Those ideas apply to wild birds, as well. 
>> Yellowish House Finches are relatively common. I usually see a few each year.
>> 
>> 
>> But, since you brought up the topic. I had occasion the other day to see the 
>> same phenomenon (I am guessing) in PURPLE Finches, which I don't think I've 
>> ever seen before. Photos of a yellowish male coming to my feeder can be seen 
>> at https://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S35976663 
>> .
>> 
>> 
>> Best,
>> 
>> 
>> Kevin
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> Kevin J. McGowan
>> Project Manager
>> Distance Learning in Bird Biology
>> Cornell Lab of Ornithology
>> 159 Sapsucker Woods Road
>> Ithaca, NY 14850
>> k...@cornell.edu 
>> 607-254-2452
>> 
>> 
>> From: bounce-121504884-3493...@list.cornell.edu 
>>  
>> > > on behalf of W. Larry 
>> Hymes >
>> Sent: Friday, May 5, 2017 4:53 PM
>> To: 

[cayugabirds-l] Heads up from the Crow People: West Nile Virus and nests

2017-05-05 Thread AB Clark
Dear Cayuga-birders,

WEST NILE VIRUS already diagnosed in our crows!!!   :-((
We who follow the crows want to report that Vet Pathology has just 
diagnosed West Nile Virus as cause of death of a crow in Cayuga Heights, in 
late April.   Another diagnosis is pending , but to be honest, this one is an 
even more classic case of West Nile Virus.  The first was a female incubating 
her clutch of eggs. The two crows lived within a few houses of each other, 
although were not in the same family group.  Our previous early record was the 
first week of June,which was followed by our first strong outbreak in 2002.  

Take this as a warning that mosquitoes must have overwintered well in 
our urban/suburban areas and some are carrying WNV.  And if you have had WNV 
deaths among crows in your area before, this is an indication that emerging 
mosquitoes may already be carrying it.  The culprits are Culex pipiens, the 
dusk-biting house mosquito, that reproduces in rain-filled gutters, bird baths, 
flower pot bases, etc.  They love warm, small, somewhat putrid water bodies. 


As a second point, only somewhat related to this:  We would appreciate any 
information leading to the discovery of a crow’s nest!  New this year:  one of 
my graduate students has begun a study of FISH CROWS, and we are thus 
particularly interested in Fish Crow nests.  .  So far we have found two, both 
with banded fish crows as members of the pair.  Very exciting, but we need 
more—both Fish Crows and American Crows!  Also with John Confer, we are busy 
documenting Merlin displacement-takeovers of crow nests.  So far we have two of 
those, on Fish Crow and one American Crow nest.  I am also very interested in 
data on rural American Crow nests.  Alerts can be sent to me or to Kevin, by 
phone or email. 

Thanks for help on the latter points and take note of the former point!

However unpopular it makes me, I am hoping for a cold May-June to hold back the 
mosquito populations.

 Anne


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] Creek/marsh at Hile School Rd-Herons

2017-04-29 Thread AB Clark
1045 am--First I’ve seen for 2017 and the most adults at one time ever—four 
Little Green Herons were croaking, hunting and flapping around together over 
the marsh, and among the Salix sp., etc quite near the road.  I have never had 
closer looks.  Not a great day for photos, but if they continue as oblivious of 
watchers as today (two cars stopped, 3 of us gawking), they will be great fun. 

One pair has produced young there for the last two years; perhaps these 
represent 2 pairs and a small green heronry.

Anne 

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
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[cayugabirds-l] House wren serenade this morning

2017-04-26 Thread AB Clark
At about 630 am,  “the” house wren  sang near our house for the first time in 
2017. He was answered and it appears that there are now at least 2, possibly 3 
territories encircling the yard.  

“The” wren has resumed his singing position atop a spruce near the outdoor lamp 
(a street lamp style thing—25 ft high or so) in which the pair somehow managed 
to nest last year.  No electrical events occured and the wrens ignored my much 
lower boxes.


Anne B Clark
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Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] First nest building robin

2017-04-11 Thread AB Clark
Sharp looking female American Robin took long streamers of grasses and tried 
for log-sized goldenrod stalks to a nice solid crotch in an small ash this 
morning.  I have seen more action in the nest site this evening.

A Phoebe tried to fly into our garage, which I take as a nest site seeking sign.

And our FOY Chipping Sparrow is at the feeder, while the Tree Sparrows, here 
two days ago, are apparently absent.  

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Phoebe!

2017-04-02 Thread AB Clark
Phoebes apparently arrived en masse.  The first one I had was right across from 
the Frog Barn on Sapsucker Woods Rd, on Thursday 30 March,  12 noon.  Sounded a 
bit out of practice. 

 Then another was singing in my yard (oob) on HIle School Rd later that 
afternoon.

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com





> On Apr 2, 2017, at 3:15 PM, Geo Kloppel  wrote:
> 
> First Phoebe for my yard today too. And arriving yesterday, six Purple 
> Finches: 3 roseating  (purplescing?) males and 3 brown streaky basic types. 
> These are the first Purple Finches to visit our feeders in months.  They're 
> doing some singing! Also have Wood Ducks visiting our pond.
> 
> -Geo
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[cayugabirds-l] Grey Catbird at Thomas Road

2017-03-12 Thread AB Clark
478 Thomas Road, second house on “W” side from Ellis Hollow Rd.  Seen sitting 
fluffed in low rose bush not far from the feeders, with three similarly fluffed 
American robins, although they were more actively scoping all the rose bushes 
for hips.  First time I have ever seen a robin hovering protractedly over 
anything.  

The catbird moved with the robins farther into the woods as I went back to my 
car for a camera.  

Had left the camera while trying to find a crow with a broken wing that was 
there and across Ellis Hollow Rd on Thursday.  Please call me if you see it!

Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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[cayugabirds-l] foy feeder Song Sparrow

2017-03-12 Thread AB Clark
is eating seed this morning with other current consumers:  chickadees, 
titmouse, downy and hairy woodpeckers, red-bellied woodpeckers, nuthatch, flock 
of house finches, goldfinches, white-throated sparrows, tree sparrows, juncos, 
cardinals, bluejays.  No sign of red-winged blackbirds and cowbirds of last few 
days, yet. 


Anne B Clark
147 Hile School Rd
Freeville, NY 13068
607-222-0905
anneb.cl...@gmail.com






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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Robins

2017-02-06 Thread AB Clark
I had over 1000 robins fly over Hanshaw Rd S of intersection with W Dryden Rd 
on 15 Jan. There were flocks of about 200 or more in my field that same day, 
about the same time.  Since then I have been routinely seeing 100-200 moving 
near dusk, in Freeville area…last weekend on Palmear Rd.  

The large numbers at this time seem unusual, particularly since there are 
females as well as males present.  

Anne

> On Feb 6, 2017, at 8:01 AM, Carol Cedarholm  wrote:
> 
> Is this early or unusual?
> On Sun, Feb 5, 2017 at 6:09 PM Ann Mitchell  > wrote:
> There was a large flock of Robins on Cliff Street south of Vinegar Street. I 
> saw them at 9:00 a.m.and at 4:30 p.m.
> Ann Mitchell
> 
> On Sun, Feb 5, 2017 at 5:07 PM, Gladys Birdsall  > wrote:
> Yesterday morning, Jan. 4th, I was out walking the dogs, up here on Mt. 
> Pleasant and there was a lot of activity with Robins.  Hard to count but 
> maybe 25-30, all around the house and out the driveway.  They were after 
> Hawthorn berries.  There are also wet areas in the woods.  I know there are 
> wild grapes around too.  It was 12 degrees F when I got up and about 10 AM it 
> was still only 14 degrees F.  
> Today I see there are Robins around down the road, west of our driveway.  The 
> past 3 days we have had a good amount of snowfall, dry fluffy snow, a good 
> ground covering, so it was a surprise, but fun to see the Robins.  
> 
> Gladys 
> 
> On 2/5/2017 12:31 PM, Donna Lee Scott wrote:
>> Lotsa Robins this winter!
>> 
>> I had 30 on Collins Road in Lansing , Count circle region 9, Jan. 1, Cayuga 
>> Bird Club Christmas Bird count.
>> 
>> Since then, see flock of them here on Lansing Station Road occasionally. 
>> 
>>  
>> 
>> Eating wild grapes, exploring open water areas of little streams and ditches.
>> 
>>  
>> 
>> Donna Scott
>> 
>> Lansing Station Road
>> 
>> Lansing, NY
>> 
>> East Shore, Cayuga Lake
>> 
>>  
>> 
>> From: bounce-121209964-15001...@list.cornell.edu 
>>  
>> [mailto:bounce-121209964-15001...@list.cornell.edu 
>> ] On Behalf Of Carol 
>> Cedarholm
>> Sent: Sunday, February 05, 2017 12:18 PM
>> To: CAYUGABIRDS-L  
>> 
>> Subject: [cayugabirds-l] Robins
>> 
>>  
>> 
>> Has anyone been seeing robins? I live in downtown ithaca and a flock of 30 
>> robins visited my backyard today!
>> 
>> Carol Cedarholm
>> 
>> --
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[cayugabirds-l] Fwd: FYI for nature photography lovers

2017-02-03 Thread AB Clark
> This was just sent around on the Broome Bluewing list and it seems 
> appropriate to alert Cayuga Bird list as well. Hope some of you get to see it!


Anne
>  
> Nature's Best Is Almost Here!
> 
> We cannot overstate how incredibly excited we are for our newest exhibition, 
> Nature's Best Photography.
>  
> Nature's Best Photography is an award-winning showcase of 50 stunning 
> large-scale photographs. The collection includes images from international 
> photographers who have captured the natural beauty and wonder of our planet's 
> creatures and habitats. The only other museum to feature Nature's Best 
> Photography is the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History!
>  
> This exhibition will open to the public on Friday, February 17 and we highly 
> recommend that you come check out these stunning photographs.
>  
> https://www.roberson.org/exhibits-events/the-exhibitions/natures-best-photography/
>  
> 
>  
>  

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] just heard a Cardinal singing

2017-01-06 Thread AB Clark
On 31 Dec, I had two or three notes of a white-throated sparrow, and on 3rd 
Jan, an aborted beginning of a mourning dove “song”.  Days are getting longer 
and sun makes them SEEM longer still.



> On Jan 6, 2017, at 10:22 AM, Laurie Roe  wrote:
> 
> Just heard a Cardinal singing. Maybe the sun inspite of the cold got him 
> going. Anyone else hearing this today? Laurie
> 
> -- 
> Einstein quote:  ‘Setting an example is not the main means of influencing 
> others, it is the ONLY means.’
> 
> Healing Hands of Ithaca
> MassageIthaca.com
> 108 W. Buffalo Street, Ithaca,NY
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] tree sparrows all over (just oob)

2016-11-12 Thread AB Clark
In our various patches of acres on Hile School Rd, mixed with juncos, 
white-throated sparrows, robins, etc. 

These are the first I have seen this fall.  They are looking very bright and 
beautiful.

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Snowy Owl=strikingly white Redtail Hawk

2016-10-26 Thread AB Clark
I checked out the Snowy Owl report and found the bird after getting conflicting 
directions from Thompson Veg farm workers.  It is actually a strkingly 
beautiful Red-Tail Hawk, with markings that make no genetic sense to me.  It 
has a brilliant adult-red tail, lots of dark streaking in head, a nice sharp 
breast line of dark feathers, and everything else is snowy white, not 
leucistic/tan, but white.  No wonder it was mistaken for a Snowy Owl.

Currently perched in the tallest bare tree along Fall Creek as it winds E from 
Herman Rd, which extends S from Fall Creek at the Veg Farm, connecting you with 
38 going to Dryden.  The tree is 2 bends of the Creek, a tall fairly full oak 
next to a poplar?, a stand-out bare tree next to the Creek.  Bird can be hard 
to see, and was just now on the SE part of the tree.  I got looks from along 
Herman Rd, and from the crossing point of the Creek, you can actually see its 
head.  From farther back N, you can see the lower body.  At least that is how I 
left it..and it seems pretty solid right now.

No crows are bothering it, and one normal Red-tail did a circle over it earlier 
but didn’t stop. It preened and may be just watching for prey.

I got some distant pictures, enough to remove doubts about owl vs hawk.

Anne
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Snowy Owl

2016-10-26 Thread AB Clark
That would be just E of Ed Hill Rd, on Fall Creek rd.  Heading out there now.  
Don’t be fooled by the wooden sculptured owl that is on the right, leaving 
Freeville, going E.

Anne

> On Oct 26, 2016, at 9:33 AM, W. Larry Hymes  wrote:
> 
> Just got a call from the manager of the Thompson Veg. Research Farm that a 
> SNOWY OWL is hanging around the farm.  The farm is just outside Freeville on 
> the road that goes to McClean.  It was last seen in a cherry tree on the 
> south side of the road near Fall Creek.  Isn't this way early
> 
> Larry
> 
> -- 
> 
> 
> W. Larry Hymes
> 120 Vine Street, Ithaca, NY 14850
> (H) 607-277-0759, w...@cornell.edu
> 
> 
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] Lesser Black-backed Gull--Stevenson Rd Compost

2016-09-18 Thread AB Clark
Adult with only very small amount of head flecking (i.e. close to breeding 
plumage).  

Today, 18 Sept,  around 1030 am, on the mounds amidst a plethora of Ring-billed 
Gulls and maybe 7-8 Greater Black-backed Gulls, ca 120 crows (about 1/3 Fish 
Crows), plus pigeons, starlings and Turkey Vultures.  There were quite a few 
“cowl” wearing vulture juveniles being curious and investigative, carrying 
objects around. 

No boobies, though.

I saw a very similar looking Lesser BB Gull at the Compost within the last two 
weeks, also.  A current regular?

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] aggressive humming birds

2016-09-04 Thread AB Clark
Not only have the several hummingbirds visiting my feeders been displacing each 
other frequently, but I just watched a hummingbird in a long, high chase of a 
goldfinch nowhere near a feeder.  Not sure what the precipitating event or 
state was…but of course, staying in good condition must be extra important now, 
just before migration. 

Anyone else familiar with interspecific aggression by hummingbirds?

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Fate of Great Horned Owl--Hile School Rd

2016-09-03 Thread AB Clark
As some will recall, there was a sick young Great Horned Owl on Hile School Rd, 
at the marshy headwaters of the Owasco Lake, where some were finding rails, 
gallinules, marsh wren etc.  As I promised at the time, I am passing along the 
news that I received from the Wildlife Clinic: sadly the owl died of its 
injuries. It definitely had a serious eye injury when delivered to the Clinic.  
It was not euthanized, according to the card, so I think the clinic tried hard 
to save it.  

An adult Great Horned Owl, perhaps a parent,  has been seen since near the 
marsh, in case anyone is interested.  Other regulars include at least 3 Little 
Green Herons (1 juv), Wood Ducks, a Virginia Rail heard in early August, 
and—exciting for me—a tagged 2 year old crow (brown tags, white numbers 00) who 
was hatched near Warren and Hanshaw and left her family in early 2016.  She 
hangs out with a varying size flock of crows in the fields between the railroad 
trail and the woods at Hile School x Ed Hill Road.  Her peanut experience back 
home may be the reason that the rural crows have taken so quickly to a small 
food source we have set up.  

Anne Clark
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[cayugabirds-l] 3 Great Egrets--Hile School Road

2016-08-12 Thread AB Clark
Just now, 12 Aug, in the marshland at Hile School Road and Rt 38, where the 
Common Gallinule, rails etc were earlier in the summer.  
My neighbor called me down and I got there in time to see them slow-flapping to 
the N visible end of the marshland where they disappeared downward.  He also 
confirmed their size because a Great Blue Heron had been present with them.  

Out of Basin, by a bit, of course.

Anne
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Why larger predatory birds flee smaller birds

2016-07-18 Thread AB Clark
And the dangers are real:  I saw Red-winged Blackbirds lose their nests to 
large bumbling goose families that, heads in the air, simply walked the nests 
over and into the swamp.  It doesn’t require a predator to do damage!

Anne
> On Jul 18, 2016, at 2:00 PM, Asher Hockett  wrote:
> 
> I have see R-w Blackbirds attack deer like this, grabbing hold just back of 
> the shoulders, to get them to move away from their nest.
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[cayugabirds-l] fledglings everywhere--Oriole today

2016-06-21 Thread AB Clark
Hile School Road-Freeville

One of several Baltimore Oriole nestlings became a fledgling this morning, and 
is now giving new meaning to the adjective “incessant”.  Its sibling(s) are 
still being fed in the nest and I am seeing relatively little parental 
attention going to it.  But the parents couldn’t possibly be missing it, as its 
call rate per minute is about 17 little ch-ch-chs of 1-2 sec each.  Its like 
having a baby monitor that broadcasts your baby breathing!  Any interruption 
could mean trouble.  

It didn’t stop when its mother trilled roughly (warningly) at me.  But it 
hopped expectantly when its dad dropped a few liquid notes out of the tree well 
above it. 

Yesterday it was up and looking around out of the nest, after feedings.  At one 
point in a gust of wind,  it nearly lost it, wings outstretched apparently 
clinging to the entrance side that I wasn’t watching.  I have not seen its sibs 
appearing over the rim like that, so there may be more than 1 day of asynchrony 
in fledging.

Anne
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Re:[cayugabirds-l] Merlin nesting update

2016-06-16 Thread AB Clark
I heard a merlin twittering on Christopher Circle/Christopher Lane yesterday 
evening, although hadn’t seen activity on it.  I have not scoped it recently.


> On Jun 16, 2016, at 6:26 PM, John Confer  wrote:
> 
> Not good news, overall, for Merlin nests.
> 
> The Titus Ave. nest, and the Dryden nest, and the City Cemetery nest have all 
> failed. I saw red-tails in the vicinity of two of the nests. The sticks in 
> two of the nests were dis-assembled, allowing light to penetrate where it had 
> been opaque, suggesting a struggle with a predator.
> 
> The Wells College nest, the Christopher Lane nest, and now maybe, perhaps the 
> new Congregational Church nest, may still be active. I never located the 
> possible nest near Freeze Rd. despite 4 trips of over an hour each from 
> ~6:30-7:30. Darn. Thanks for the input!
> 
> John Confer


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Merlin(s) @ Cayuga Heights

2016-06-14 Thread AB Clark
Hi Suan and All Merlin Watchers,

The Merlins on Christopher Circle have either gone completely silent or fledged 
(too soon?) or they have moved.  I saw no birds around or visible on the nest 
by late last week.  IS this related to the Highland Avenue pair?  I have no 
idea how far they might move for a renest. 

Anne

> On Jun 14, 2016, at 10:10 PM, Suan Yong  wrote:
> 
> At 7:30 this evening as we were about to enter the First Congregational 
> Church on Highland Avenue in Cayuga Heights, we heard a Merlin calling from a 
> pine tree up the hill SE of the church. Soon we saw a Merlin circle around in 
> a display flight. I couldn't be sure, but it felt like the vocalizing bird 
> was different from the flying one, suggesting a pair, perhaps. Seems possible 
> that a nest is nearby, but without binoculars and being late for the 
> rehearsal, I didn't see anything more.
> 
> Suan
> _
> http://suan-yong.com
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[cayugabirds-l] Ravens and the new mown hay

2016-06-02 Thread AB Clark
Today, as the June mowing of the last few days was smelling good, but causing 
confusion among the previously nesting Red-winged Blackbirds and Bobolinks, a 
group of Ravens parked themselves on fields next to my house.  

I suspect this is the same group as flew through earlier in the week—there were 
6 then and there were at least 4 today.  They foraged on a field mostly out of 
sight through brushy trees and spent the whole day whooping, quonking and 
making noises that turned out to be fledglings demanding what adults were 
finding.  Definitely fledglings involved, as they occasionally landed and 
vocalized high enough in the trees that I could see them well at the edge of 
the field and our scrubby land.  The landings entailed a great deal of flapping 
and some sudden vocalizations as the branch did not hold. I got a few sightings 
of flying ravens with relatively small heads, in the stretching, 
trying-to-fly-faster posture of young corvids. 

I got a few other views, including one of an adult carrying a whole,small 
rodent low across the field back toward where the fledglings seemed to be 
perched.  The vocalizations from the waiting birds crescendoed and everyone 
followed the bird with the food along the tree line, so I had glimpses and some 
good views of 4 or more. 

They seemed to ignore  one of the local pair of Redtail Hawks as it also soared 
back and forth over the fields, being attacked by Redwinged Blackbirds.

Anyway the picnic on the hayfield lasted noisily all day until about 7 pm.  Now 
they have disappeared, I think off to the South and back into the Basin, which 
might be Hammond Hill area or closer to 13. Wish they had been more visible.  

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] a flight of ravens this morning

2016-05-31 Thread AB Clark
At around 730 am this morning, a flight of whoop-calling ravens flew SW to NE 
across land just S of us on Hile School Rd.  First two birds, flying together, 
followed closely by a calling third, and then shortly after that, a strongly 
calling group of 3.  All kept heading across Ed Hill Rd toward 13, and 
disappeared.  But then around 830, I heard ravens faintly again, S over toward 
Irish Settlement Rd. 

Could this have been a family outing?  Or would raven fledglings be flying that 
strongly yet?  Four would be a large brood to fledge, but it seems to be a good 
year for young Corvus rearing. 

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] oriole nest, h-birds and cuckoo

2016-05-28 Thread AB Clark
Among other things on this clearly summer day:

The Ruby-thoated Hummingbirds found the newly offered feeder and a male was 
doing U-shaped display flights not far from the feeder area within hours.

An Baltimore Oriole nest is complete in clear view  (nice for us, maybe not for 
the oriole) off a cherry branch.  Not sure what stage, but males have been 
competitive for days.

A Black-billed cuckoo has been calling today, first this morning, and now again 
this evening. Hadn’t heard it before today.

A Willow Flycatcher is back exactly where one sang last year.

And the Mourning Doves are incubating their third (I think) clutch in our 
garage, this time right on top of my field equipment.  Fortunately most of the 
equipment in current use is in my car.

Oh—and last night I saw fireflies for the first time.

Anne  (just over the Basin Border)
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[cayugabirds-l] migrating birds react to street level lights

2016-05-18 Thread AB Clark
I thought that this Conservation Mag article would be of interest to those on 
Cayuga and Bluewing lists, since it relates both to the nocturnal migrant calls 
people hear and raises some questions about why.  Despite the url, I am not 
sure we can conclude they are disoriented by them.  

http://conservationmagazine.org/2016/04/even-porch-lights-can-disorient-migratory-birds/

Here is the published article on which the write-up is based:
Watson, M. J., Wilson, D. R., & Mennill, D. J. (2016). Anthropogenic light is 
associated with increased vocal activity by nocturnally migrating birds. The 
Condor, 118(2), 338-344. DOI: 10.1650/CONDOR-15-136.1 
.

If anyone wants the actual Condor article, I can send.  The link will give you 
the abstract, but not the whole paper.


Anne
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] W-C sparrow-yes, today

2016-05-16 Thread AB Clark
“MY” white-crowned sparrow turned back up this morning, after I neglected to 
fill feeders Fri and Saturday, but refilled them midday Sunday.  I have had one 
since late winter, got up to four recently (and thought I could tell the one 
apart by crown and also confident way it moved around the feeder area).  I 
think this is the same one from winter.  

Anne

> On May 16, 2016, at 9:40 PM, Bill Mcaneny  wrote:
> 
> Surprised this a.m. to see a White-crowned Sparrow scratching around in the 
> hedge.  I thought they had moved on by now.  Are others still around?
> Bill McAneny
> TBurg
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[cayugabirds-l] A not-quite-basin report-Boblink singing

2016-05-09 Thread AB Clark
147 Hile School Rd:   First (in my irregular birding around the paths) bobolink 
singing hopefully over a patch of golden rod stalks that the red-winged 
blackbirds call their own.  And first blue-winged warbler  (or maybe 2) in the 
breaking tree buds, foraging and singing, and a first catbird, also this 
evening.  First singing Baltimore oriole this morning.

My all-winter  white-crowned sparrow, joined by a second last week, was joined 
by a third conspecific this morning.  This evening,  two of them might be 
“interacting positively”—or maybe not.  I think I can tell them apart. 

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Rose-breasted Grosbeak

2016-05-02 Thread AB Clark
Male--over my feeders this am.  Yes, just a bit outside the basin, but the bird 
flew toward the boundary and Fall Creek…and of course, there were reports 
starting 25th April. :)

Anne
Hile School Rd
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] osprey nest on Warren Rd.

2016-04-21 Thread AB Clark
That explains the flyover osprey when I was on Winthrop Dr. a couple of days 
ago.  And on Tuesday also, a bald eagle and a raven (chased off by two resident 
crow families) over Muriel.  The bald eagle was remarkably low!  The raven 
looked distinctly young, brownish and broken primaries.  

Anne
 
> On Apr 20, 2016, at 3:05 PM, howard london  wrote:
> 
> The nest (new?) is atop a utility pole just past the Sheriff's Dept. on the 
> northbound side of Warren Rd. and opposite Borg-Warner.  Passing by there 
> this afternoon I glimpsed just a bird's head.
> 
> Howard London
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[cayugabirds-l] Raven forager--Freese x Hanshaw fields

2016-04-17 Thread AB Clark
I encountered a Common Raven alighting and foraging in the wettest spot in the 
NE corner of the field at Freese x Hanshaw (a spot just SW of the corner 
signs). The nearest pair of crows was quite upset at this, diving at it, but it 
didn’t even look at them while landing. 

 It captured something quite frog-like, used its feet in some way to carry it 
up and transfer the prey to its bill, and flew off East down Hanshaw.  It got 
out of sight before I could see where it went beyond old Ludgate Farms.  Quite 
possibly the same one/pair that I have encountered foraging along Hanshaw just 
a bit north of 13.  But after that, where???  Could there be a raven nest 
fairly close to Sapsucker Woods?  


Also, for those keeping track of raptors:  a) for the 3rd time since Thursday, 
a Broadwing Hawk was circling overhead in the vicinity of the DeWitt Middle 
School playing fields; b) a Merlin pair is back on Christopher Lane area since 
early last week and as of today, appears to have successfully harrased our 
oldest female crow (19 years old) off her nest and established their access to 
the nest.  

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Cortland County--BUT Wild Turkeys in flight!

2016-04-06 Thread AB Clark
This is an out of county observation this morning at 815 am.  (in Cortland 
county, south along 38 from Harford, and about a mile N of Morton Road, based 
on map.  I thought it said Morey road. ).  It was just so unusual to see, 
thought it worth sharing.

Wild turkeys coming out of a roost along the ridge to the W of 38 and 
gliding/flapping down to the bottom lands to the E of 38…maybe 30+ of them.  
Not sure.  But it was a bizarre sight to see so many wild turkeys from 
underneath as they flew.  It took me a few seconds—not geese, not what

A mix of males, females and young ones, based on the various sizes.  It was a 
strange and wonderful event on the way to work in Binghamton.

Based my past life of studying wild turkeys in Michigan, they do seem to love 
to roost on wooded ridge sides.  They get into the roost from above it, 
launching into the trees, and then they glide easily out of it.  

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] a surfeit of urban vultures?

2016-04-01 Thread AB Clark
While checking on and looking for crow nests around Ithaca, mostly to NE side 
and Cayuga Heights, I am encountering numerous vultures swooping low through 
neighborhoods, just sailing around looking for your backyard carrion, I 
suppose.  But my impression is that there are more than in years past, and 
closer, lower and more “residential”.  

In my view, the crows have had a lot of reason to attack as the vultures have 
come within 20-30 meters of nest sites, looking pretty predatory.  Yesterday, I 
watched an acrobatic event between crows and a low swooping couple of vultures 
over Pleasant Grove Road near Forest Home and Hasbrouck community buildings 
yesterday, with the vultures having to dodge and sail pretty fast, after they 
dropped in over a nest.  

Am I just not remembering past years, or are there more vultures close at hand 
over residential and campus Ithaca?

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Raven correction and update

2016-03-27 Thread AB Clark
Yesterday, 26 March, I reported watching a raven sitting beside a yard at 
junction of Neimi Road and Hanshaw Road.  (I also spelled Neimi incorrectly).  
Actually it was on the S side of intersection of ETNA and Hanshaw, where there 
are actually houses.

Today, 27 March, at about 11 am, just barely S of yesterday’s perch, a raven 
was at the side of Hanshaw, eating a roadkill.  Is it in residence near there?  
Unfortunately I am unable to identify the raven as the same one. 

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Raven gets friendly?-and Crow 9U

2016-03-26 Thread AB Clark
As I was coming back to Freeville via  Hanshaw Road (13 to West Dryden Road), 
there was a Raven just sitting in a tree along the road, basically in the front 
yard of the house or two on the W side of Hanshaw, just before getting to Niemi 
Road.  Two crows came out from W of the house to call at the raven, which just 
sat comfortably. I pulled into Niemi Road to get a few photos, just to document 
the event of seeing a raven sitting calmly so close to a  house.  

And speaking of the stretch between Etna and Niemi Roads, we have a disperser 
crow, a young 3 year old female tagged with green tags, black letters 9U.  Last 
year she moved from her natal area between Hanshaw and Cardinal lane, 
apparently finding a mate and territory between Etna and Niemi Roads.   The 
pair are often to be seen on one side of Hanshaw or the other.  BUT now that 
nesting is upon us, they have been hanging out E of Hanshaw, a little less than 
halfway from Etna to Niemi, at the N edge of the first big pasture/marsh open 
area after passing Etna Road going N.  

I would LOVE to find her nest and will be trying to watch the pair.  But it 
isn’t going to be easy.  Their territory seems to go far E and W.  If anyone 
gets some information from them (a direct flight to near a conifer farther 
east, for instance?), an off-list email would be much appreciated.  

Thanks, Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] feeder birds

2016-03-19 Thread AB Clark
Just outside of the Basin, Hile School Road:

Since Thursday 17 March, only two rather than a dozen American Tree Sparrows 
have visited my feeders. They are here this morning, and one just did 
“crest-up" at the other, which kept crest feathers flat—I assume two males.  

This morning 19 Mar, the White-crowned Sparrow adult, I assume the same one 
that has been here for weeks, again showed up to confirm his continued 
presence.  Also a definite female Red-winged Blackbird came to the feeder area 
where about a dozen males in various stages of maturity are feeding.  

Larger Tree Sparrow flocks (12 or so) were still around in hedgerows on 
Thursday, however; they just didn’t zero in on my feeders.

Tuesday last week (15 Mar) was the first day I confirmed females in a flock of 
Red-winged Blackbirds along Hile School Road. 

And the maple tree on the NW side of the house is blooming strongly today.  

Anne


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Audubon: The Film... needs 9 more to make happen, by 3/10, 7pm (8 more needed)

2016-03-09 Thread AB Clark
6 more—I just got two tickets.


> On Mar 9, 2016, at 2:21 PM, Marie P. Read  wrote:
> 
> I just signed up.
> 8 to go!
> 
> Marie
> 
> Marie Read Wildlife Photography
> 452 Ringwood Road
> Freeville NY  13068 USA
> 
> Phone  607-539-6608
> e-mail   m...@cornell.edu
> 
> http://www.marieread.com
> 
> 
> From: bounce-120252137-5851...@list.cornell.edu 
> [bounce-120252137-5851...@list.cornell.edu] on behalf of Sandy Wold 
> [sandra.w...@gmail.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, March 9, 2016 1:51 PM
> To: Jae Sullivan
> Cc: CAYUGABIRDS-L
> Subject: [cayugabirds-l] Audubon: The Film... needs 9 more to make happen, by 
> 3/10, 7pm
> 
> Jae, If you used the link Marc sent out, check your spam folder.  I got email 
> notification within a minute.  Also, I think they (Tugg ticket reservation 
> platform) are holding tickets and charging after the magic number is reached, 
> then they will send email notification of how to pick up tickets.  I think 
> they will let you choose if you want to print out, electronic, or 
> Cinnemapolis will hold at the door for you.  If that doesn't solve it, I'd 
> call Cinemapolis to see if they can look up and see if your reservation went 
> through!  Glad you are going!
> 
> 51 signed up, 9 MORE NEEDED to make this event happen!  
> https://www.tugg.com/events/92425?utm_source=Cornell+Lab+eNews_campaign=970fbb23c1-Sapsucker_Woods_Events_Feb2016_medium=email_term=0_47588b5758-970fbb23c1-277945065
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> On Wed, Mar 9, 2016 at 1:21 PM, Jae Sullivan 
> > wrote:
> Who is handling the reservations?
> 
> I signed up for two tickets but did not receive a confirmation...?
> 
> I was told that I would receive one.
> 
> Jae
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> From: Sandy Wold >
> To: Upstate NY Birding digest 
> >
> Sent: Wednesday, March 9, 2016 10:29 AM
> Subject: [cayugabirds-l] Audubon: The Film... needs 16 more to make happen, 
> by 3/10, 7pm
> 
> Reserve your ticket by tomorrow, March 10, 7pm.  We need at least 16 more to 
> do this or the film will be canceled!  They take your credit card info and 
> won't charge unless the event is happening.  I forwarded and invited friends 
> via Facebook.
> 
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] very young and singing Blackbird

2016-02-25 Thread AB Clark
A young male Redwinged Blackbird, still in all stripy plumage with no visible 
red on wing, sat outside the house at 730 AM running through bits and pieces of 
Redwinged Blackbird songs and calls.  I recorded a short bit.  Regular very 
breathy “kr” of the conkereee-- identifiably male blackbird--but also but 
also the sharp “chicks” and bits of the whistles.  Resembled what you might 
imagine if a Brown-headed Cowbird and Redwinged Blackbird song were somehow 
fused.

This little guy was not in patchy black plumage, just very dark stripes, 
although the lighting this morning is challenging and my video clip doesn’t 
show the plumage well at all.

But it is the first blackbird song I have heard!  And the first blackbird near 
my feeders, though he wasn’t showing any interest.  

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Eagles "everywhere"

2016-02-20 Thread AB Clark
Feb 20 2016  1045 Freeville:  Two adult Bald Eagles soared over 38 just S of 
the intersection with Hile School Road, one of which soared E up Hile School Rd 
and across Ed Hill RD (in and out and into the basin).. They stayed very high; 
an adult Red-tailed Hawk soared with them over Rt 38 and I thought briefly that 
it was going to try a little chasing, but I think they were just riding the 
same thermal.

1330 Stevenson Rd:  A Bald Eagle (3rd year with eye stripe) 
soared from the E over the Stevenson Road compost mounds, bringing up almost 
every bird, crow, gull, etc and left by way of the Pheasant Pens.  Not the same 
one as the two that Kevin saw there earlier, based on his pictures. 

1530 NE Ithaca:  A juvenile Bald Eagle soared N to S across 
NE Elementary School, across Christopher Circle and disappeared to the SE, 
eliciting some strong calling from  our Oldest Crow (18 years, 10 mos old) and 
her family.   She has seen some changes in the number of urban avian predators 
in her time!

Seems to be a lot of eagles around.   Perhaps it is time for juveniles and 
immatures to leave the vicinity of adult nesting areas?  I don’t know enough 
about eagle life histories.

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] White-crowned sparrow--Hile School Rd feeders

2016-02-11 Thread AB Clark
>From just outside the Basin: 

Feb 11 2016.   For the second time since yesterday am, a White-crowned Sparrow 
was investigating and feeding a little at my feeder on Hile School Road, ~0.2 
mi W of Ed Hill Road.  As yesterday, it didn’t stay long. Today, I have watched 
off and on all day, and it first turned up at about 5pm.

 I have some poor pics in dim light through the window, but I see nothing to 
indicate that it is other than an Eastern form.  Pink bill vs Pink-orange 
bill??  Mainly it looked cold, with its head feathers fluffed like a “fur hat”. 
 But maybe I am projecting.

Anne—Just Outside the Basin Boundary
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[cayugabirds-l] brown-headed cowbirds again--Hile School and Ed Hill Roads both

2016-02-02 Thread AB Clark
ABout 10 am, today 2 FEb 16, a brown-headed cowbird male was at my feeder and I 
thought I saw a small flock of them moving SE into the brushy areas around our 
house on Hile School Road…just out of the basin.  But these are birds, with 
wings.  At 330 pm today, several (or many) cowbird males flew ESE with a large 
flock of starlings, across Ed Hill Road, about 1/2 way between Hile School Road 
and Fall Creek Road i.e. “in the Basin”.  I assume that they probably included 
some of the same ones seen in the morning, ca 3/4 mi from there.  

Anne
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[cayugabirds-l] Crow Roosts and a new Crow Roost website

2015-12-21 Thread AB Clark
Greetings, fellow birders!   Announcing a new website www.crowroosts.org 
 that I hope will be of interest and use!

As some of you are aware, we have an ongoing study of crow roosts as sources of 
nitrogen and agents of changes in N-cycling.  Crow roosts are seen as creating 
“hot spots and hot moments” of N input.  Anyone whose backyard has hosted a 
crow roost of any size will appreciate those terms.  The study is in 
collaboration with my ecosystem ecology colleague Dr. Weixing Zhu and our 
graduate student Ben Eisenkop.

One of our goals is to identify locations of crow roosts (from the barely 
noticeable of ca. 50 to the obvious 50K+ birds) and get some idea of their 
distribution, number, and location across NY State in this and ensuing winters. 
Our website above provides information on roosts, but also invites everyone to 
fill in a form about any known roost.  We have collaborated with the Lab of 
Ornithology’s YardMap to link a group mapping activity, so everyone can map the 
kind of trees, shrubs, water sources, etc where crows are roosting.  Our goal 
is to quantify the habitat characteristics of roost sites, which we can then 
compare with surrounding areas they aren’t using.  

I hope those on the list will note such roosting activity and participate by 
reporting the site…or if feeling particularly lazy, contact me (Anne Clark)  
that you know of such a site and we will check it out!

Best wishes for a bird-filled holiday in this peculiarly warm and perhaps 
low-roosting year!

The Crow Research Group-ees 
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