Posted by: atowhee | April 30, 2009

Mac is back

The MacGillivray’s Warbler is back in his narrow, damp canyon up beyond the end of Granite Street, about 2600 feet in elevation.  The Forest Fervice had done brush clearing & burning, but it was on the dry slope facing the brush in the damp, shady area he likes.  One pish and he was out into the low bushes spying on the noise-maker. No picture as he flitted rapidly from branch to leaf cluster to shaded trunk perch.

There were numerous singing Black-headed Grosbeaks and Nashville Warblers in the mixed forest and manzanita there.  Also spotted one slow-moving Cassin’s Vireo gleaning leaves in the cottonwoods.  Only my second this spring.  The MacGillivray’s was a first for 2009.

MacGillivray, you should know, was the Scottish naturalist who actually wrote the nine volumes of text for Ausdubon’s BIRD BIOGRAPHIES Audubon’s English prose was not the greatest.  For that writing MacG got a pittance per page, and a brilliantly colored warbler named for him in gratitude by Audubon.  MacGillivray never saw his warbler alive nor visisted the U.S.  The warbler was first noticed and collected for science by Nuttall and Townsend and Tolmie in the 1830s, probably somewhere near Astoria, Oregon.

I checked out North Mountain Park late today, no Yellow-breasted Chat nor Orioles seen there yet but many Wilson’s Warblers along Bear Creek.  Also one female Yellowthroat.  And a Green Heron fly-over.  Best sighting: a double play by the shortstop for the Ashland High School baseball team.   During a game against Crater High the shortstop managed to get a pair of Canada Geese off the field. They had landed in blopper territory in short left field.  The third base umpire called time out.  Goose-eggs for the the gander and his mate, you might say.  Double-play, two outs, by the shortstop.

Location:     Granite St.–upper
Observation date:     4/30/09
Number of species:     9

Turkey Vulture     3
Pileated Woodpecker     1
Cassin’s Vireo     1
Steller’s Jay     3
Common Raven     1
American Robin     1
Nashville Warbler     6
MacGillivray’s Warbler     1
Black-headed Grosbeak     5

Location:     North Mountain Park
Observation date:     4/30/09
Number of species:     21

Canada Goose     2
Mallard     7
Green Heron     1
Anna’s Hummingbird     1
Acorn Woodpecker     2
Downy Woodpecker     1
Western Scrub-Jay     4
Tree Swallow     8
Violet-green Swallow     1
Black-capped Chickadee     1
Bushtit     2
American Robin     1
Common Yellowthroat     1
Wilson’s Warbler     6
Lincoln’s Sparrow     7
White-crowned Sparrow     1
Golden-crowned Sparrow     1
Red-winged Blackbird     9
Brewer’s Blackbird     4
Lesser Goldfinch     3
American Goldfinch     25

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