Posted by: atowhee | May 6, 2017


You don’t need a dictionary…just think life abandons shyness!

MAY 6, 2017

It is a spring day of clouds, sprinkles, chill air and the season’s imperatives.  Trees and bulbs in bloom, birds building nests, male birds back from winter vacation are singing, hormone levels on extra-strength, leaves are opened and even oaks are showing some green now.  In the past 2 days I’ve seen several Wilson’s Warbler plus Warbling Vireo, male Black-headed Grosbeak (singing in flight) and Western Tanager.  Vaux’s Swifts are now daily over our house.  Starlings have nestlings in one end of our garage.  The Scrub-Jays are grown secretive, meaning they have nestlings as well. Our blueberry bushes are already loaded with berries we will share with the jays. The parsley threatens to over-run our entire planter box.  The rhodies and azaleas and dogwoods are shameless in their make-up.  Their gaudy outer wear would shame any fauvist painter, perhaps even Gauguin.  And then there were the flashes of golden sunlight moving through the trees at Wennerberg Park.  Even though the sun was under clouds…it was my first male Western Tanager of the season…shine on, oh bird of cherry-head and gilded chest. For complete spring abandon I await my first dragonfly…ST WIRDMale Spotted Towhee giving full-throated calls in McMinnville…see how his throat feather pooch out?ST WIRD3Male Western Tanager in Wennerberg Park.WETA0-MAY3WETA-LOOK

Yesterday at Joe Dancer Park a male Wilson’s Warbler worked at hide-n-seek along the river.WW2Then he turned and briefly gave me the full stare, though I doubt he was really looking at me…WW-BESTHe’s our tiniest warbler in the west but he has quite an impact. Love the black beret.WW-BEST2Female kestrel at Joe Dancer, then a Red-tail in flight.K1K6rth-jdprkAt Dancer Park, I believe this is a Townsend’s chipmunk, named after the same man who discovered his namesake warbler.  Townsend and Nuttall came to Oregon in the mid-1830s and made numerous discoveries in natural history that were new to science.CHPCHP3CHP4

Joe Dancer Park, Yamhill, Oregon, US
May 5, 2017. 10 species

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)  1
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  1
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)  1
Warbling Vireo (Vireo gilvus)  1
American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)  2
Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)  3
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  6
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Wilson’s Warbler (Cardellina pusilla)  2
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)  2

Wennerberg Park, Carlton, OR, Yamhill, Oregon, US
May 6, 2017 11:55 AM – 12:25 PM.  12 species

Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)  1
Anna’s Hummingbird (Calypte anna)  1
Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)  X
Bewick’s Wren (Thryomanes bewickii)  1
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  16
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Orange-crowned Warbler (Oreothlypis celata)  1     singing
Wilson’s Warbler (Cardellina pusilla)  2
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)  6     some singing
Western Tanager (Piranga ludoviciana)  1
Black-headed Grosbeak (Pheucticus melanocephalus)  2
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)  1

Michelbook & 13th Street, Yamhill, Oregon, US
May 6, 2017 10:00 AM – 10:20 AM.  11 species

Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto)  X
Vaux’s Swift (Chaetura vauxi)  3
Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)  4
Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)  1
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  12
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)  1
Black-headed Grosbeak (Pheucticus melanocephalus)  X     one singing
House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus)  2
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)  3
House Sparrow (Passer domesticus)  X

McMinnville, Yamhill, Oregon, US
May 6, 2017.  8 species

Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto)  X
Vaux’s Swift (Chaetura vauxi)  X
Anna’s Hummingbird (Calypte anna)  1
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  X
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)  X
Orange-crowned Warbler (Oreothlypis celata)  1; Spotted Towhee
Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)  1

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