Blackpoll & Chestnut-sided Warblers
- 22-Sept 2006 Firday - Usal Creek Campground - Yesterday the Chuck Vaughn, George Chaniot, and Bob Keiffer "Birdathon" crew found a Chestnut-sided Warbler and an immature Blackpoll Warbler in the same mixed flock with Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Orange-crowned Warblers, Yellow Warblers, Wilson's Warblers, Hutton Vireos, etc.
We found these will walking the creekbed upstream from the bridge. The key is searching the campground and listening for chickadees, then locating them ... usually there are warblers associated with them. "Pishing" sometimes helps. I also find that it helps to wear and old shirt or jacket so that one can lie flat on the ground to view the birds in the treetops .... this helps to prevent a permanent kink in the neck.
There were not as many warblers as on Wednesday ... so we really had to search for them. Activity does not really start until the sun hits the trees ... about 0830 AM. It was quite windy at times but we did find pockets where is was calm ...at least for a while.
There was one Clay-colored Sparrow at the entrance ....right near the campground sign. There were also numerous Vaux's Swift and at least a dozen White-throated Swifts foraging over the north hillside (up near the burned area). The white-throated can easily be seen and identified from the beach access area.
For any of you that pursue the Kentucky Warbler at Chadburne (spelling?) Gulch (I unfortunately did not see this bird) Chuck found it by "pishing" and then hearing a "chup" note call somewhat like a Hermit thrush's but different. He realized it was a warbler and continues to "pish" it closer to him (about 10 feet away) in the thick underbrush riparian along the creek. This guy is a real "skulker" and sticks to the ground or low dense understory. The bird was seen just about 50 feet west of where the dirt entrance road meets Hwy 1. We searched for another 20 minutes or so without relocating the bird ... I even walked (crawled) up the creek in search of it.
Good birding. Bob Keiffer.
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