Pelham Bay Park (Bronx) and Central Park: Late June Bird Walks
Updated: Feb 28
26 June 2019
Bird Notes: This Saturday (29 June) we are headed to Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx, meeting at 9:30am at two places (train or driving): (a) for those coming by train: the last stop of the #6 Lexington Avenue local station (called Pelham Park Park); and (b) for those driving: at the free parking lot at the old Rice Stadium just off the New England Thruway at Watt Avenue and Middletown Road (called the Aileen B. Ryan Recreational Complex, Middletown Road, The Bronx, NY 10465). Further details below and/or email us if you need more info etc.
We're birding in two fine NYC Parks this Sat/Sun: looking for nesting warblers (three species), cuckoos and any June surprises we can turn up.
Willow Flycatcher at Jamaica Bay by Deborah Allen on 22 June 2019
In this week's Historical Notes, we present only one (1) article: migrant and resident birds observed in Chelsea (14th street just west of 7th Avenue in Manhattan) from 1944-1950 by Laurence Hawkins. As you read it, note the absence of birds we see regularly in Manhattan these days such as Red-tailed Hawks and Cooper's Hawks (+ only one mention of Kestrels)...also note how many more birds (and species) are seen on autumn (southbound) migration, than spring migration. Just looking at the number/diversity of warblers (22 species!) seen in the trees opposite the author's third floor window in Chelsea in six years - suggests that there were many more warblers migrating over Manhattan not so long ago. Finally, if the author (Laurence F. Hawkins) sounds familiar, perhaps you used his text in college? https://tinyurl.com/y5wqeqa8
Nesting Eastern Kingbird at Turtle Pond (Central Park) by Deborah Allen on 23 June 2019
Good! The Bird Walks for Late June
All Walks $10/person
Directions to All Meeting Locations can be found here: https://tinyurl.com/ya65n5a8
1. Saturday, 29 June at 9:30am - Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx. We give directions for those taking the train from Manhattan first, and then for those driving.
What to Bring?: Wear lightweight hiking shoes - we might go through a couple of muddy patches but nothing too terrible. Bring water to drink (check weather forecast - supposed to be warm/humid), and make sure to bring mosquito repellent. We will be out about three hours.
For those taking the train from Manhattan: Take the Train on the East Side of Manhattan! The #6 Train - Meet at the last stop of the #6 train (Lexington Ave. local - the last stop is called Pelham Bay Park). When you get off the train walk down one flight of stairs and find the doors to the LEFT of the token booth (easy) - go through those doors - they lead onto a flat wide ramp (that goes over the New England Thruway). I will be standing on the other side of the doors on that ramp from 9:20-9:35am. We will then join up with the group that drives in and parks at the free parking lot. (Deborah will meet that group.)
Please Note: apparently on the #6 train route this weekend, there is track work going on. So at 125th street you will switch to a shuttle bus (free) that will take you to 138th st. and Brook Ave (Bx), where you can get back on the #6 train (free)...and then continue to the last stop. So plan on adding an extra 20 minutes to your trip...
See the MTA web site for directions: https://tinyurl.com/4xjne4p
-- Type in as your destination: Pelham Bay Park
-- Your starting point could be the 59th street Lexington Ave station.
For those Driving! DO NOT drive to the Orchard Beach parking lot - we are not meeting there! We are meeting at a free parking lot at the old Rice Stadium: Watt Avenue and Middletown Road (Bronx 10465). For driving directions, use this as your destination: Aileen B. Ryan Recreational Complex, Middletown Road, The Bronx, NY 10465. Parking is free! Meet Deborah at that lot at 9:30am...and if you are lost take her cell number: 347-703-5554
2.***Sunday, 30 June at 7:30am/9:30am - Boathouse Cafe; 74th st/East Drive (Central Park)
*** On mornings when two walks are scheduled, you can do both walks for $10/person. So you get two for one. OR you can do either the early walk or the second walk for $10/person.
Any questions send them our way: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 718-828-8262 (home)
Carolina Wren at Jamaica Bay by Deborah Allen on 22 June 2019
The fine print: On Sundays starting June 23 through November, our walks meet at 7:30am and again at 9:30am at the Boathouse Restaurant (approx. 74th street and the East Drive). Please note: the Boathouse is not one of the buildings that surround the nearby Model Boat Pond - people make this mistake all the time!.
Our home phone is 718-828-8262...and Deborah's cell is: 347-703-5554. Email is above (email@example.com). If you are lost and trying to get to the bird walk, call Deborah's cell phone...but remember on weekends there will be 2-3 other people calling who are also lost - please be patient! If in doubt about whether a walk will take place or not the morning of the walk: check the main landing page of this web site as well as the "Schedule" page - if the walk is cancelled, information will be posted there by 6am the day of the walk, and usually by 11pm the night before. If still confused and as a last resort, call us at home - if no one answers it means we left for the bird walk! We end all our Central Park walks (except Fridays) at the Boathouse at about noon; you can get a cup of coffee and a muffin there (around $6 total). Walks last about 3 hrs (less if hot or rainy), and you can leave at anytime - we won't be offended. If you need directions/help to your next destination, just ask someone on the walk - we are a helpful group.
Black-billed Cuckoo at Jamaica Bay by Deborah Allen on 22 June 2019
Here is what we saw last week (brief highlights)
Saturday, 22 June (Jamaica Bay Wildlife Reserve in Queens at 10am) - our best finds were the two cuckoo species: two Black-billed Cuckoos (see above) and one Yellow-billed (see below)...all three birds on the trail to the north of the Visitors' Center (to the right as one exits the rear of the building). We believe both species nest here. Other highlights include the sheer number of Yellow Warblers throughout the area; the male American Redstart that came in close to us; Willow Flycatcher (so many mosquitoes here!), and Great Crested Flycatcher...and the Clapper Rail calling to us, but not seen.
Yellow-billed Cuckoo at Jamaica Bay by Deborah Allen on 22 June 2019
Sunday, 23 June (Boathouse Restaurant/Cafe at 74th st and the East Drive at 7:30am/9:30am) - this is late June birding, and it will continue this way through July in Central Park: nesting Warbling Vireos; nesting Cedar Waxwings; nesting Baltimore Orioles...If you come to the Central Park walks for the next few weeks (until early August) with an open mind to plants (there is an orchid in bloom in Central Park/NYC that is fairly common), and enjoying the park, you will have a great time. If you want to see rare birds...wait until early August when the first southbound birds will arrive in number. For those keeping track, the pair of Tree Swallows at Turtle Pond seem to have abandoned their potential nest due to pressure from Starlings; and one reliable Central Park observer (Roger Pasquier) found singing Acadian Flycatcher and Eastern Wood Pewee last week (21 June)...and Roger and I both agreed that there is only one Wood Thrush remaining in the Ramble (south side of Belvedere Castle), while the other two singing males left the park in the past two weeks. Amazing to think we had three singing (male) Wood Thrushes at one time this spring in the Ramble - and no pairs were formed - and no nesting behavior observed.
Boat-tailed Grackle October 2014 at Jamaica Bay
Seven Years of Bird-Watching in Chelsea (Manhattan) Laurence F. Hawkins The following is a record covering the years 1944-50 of birds I have observed from my third-floor apartment windows, which look out upon a row of typical Manhattan back yards. The ten yards visible contain sixteen Ailanthus trees; several of the yards are grassy, with a few bushes; most are quite bare; one large yard is cemented over and provides a playground for a nursery. These yards are located between 14th and 15th Streets just west of 7th Avenue, and are enclosed on each side (north and south) by five or six four-and-five-story houses. Attracted chiefly by the view of trees, my wife and I moved to our present quarters in the fall of 1941. Not being a bird student at that time and assuming, as people generally do, that no birds other than English Sparrows, Starlings, and Pigeons frequent the thickly built-up sections of the city, I did not look for birds in our trees. But seeing a male Scarlet Tanager in the spring of 1942, and again in 1943; finding a Hummingbird at a red geranium on the window sill; observing a Nuthatch on the trunk of the nearest tree,these experiences led me to realize that country birds may be seen now and then in downtown Manhattan. It was not until April 15, 1944, however, that it occurred to me to begin keeping a record of my 14th Street birds. This was the date on which I saw what looked to me like a sparrow with a bloody pate; after studying it with opera glasses, I saw that the bird was not injured but possessed a crown of red feathers. Thumbing through my Audubon's Birds of America, I identified the bird as a Redpoll. Soon I began to look for birds, and the more I looked the more birds I saw. I bought field glasses, later 8-power binoculars. I had trouble identifying birds from the Audubon pictures, and finally discovered Peterson's Field Guide, I enlarged my acquaintance with birds by making trips to the city parks and to the country. Of course I had many difficulties in making identifications at first. In presenting this list, however, I have made a genuine effort not to yield to wishful thinking. I include some birds seen flying above (most of the smaller ones I can't identify), as well as birds in the trees or on the ground. I have classified my birds as "permanent residents," "winter residents," and "migrants"; but I base these classifications upon my own observations in this location, not upon those of Mr. Cruickshank in his Birds around New York City. Strictly speaking, there are no "summer residents" here, except for some of the House Sparrows. As for summer visitors, if they come in June, I consider them spring migrants; if in July or August, fall migrants. (I probably miss a good many of them because of the thickness of the foliage and also because of my frequent absence from the city.) Certain birds that are permanent residents of the New York City region are seen here only as migrants; for example, in this record I clarify Chickadees among the "migrants." The Duck Hawk [Peregrine Falcon] is a permanent resident of the region, but for five years I have seen Duck Hawks only as winter residents. Here is the record, including a few notes from 1951: Permanent Residents The only birds that are permanent residents of this neighborhood are the Pigeons and the House Sparrows. One flock of kept Pigeons is to be seen almost daily, wheeling through the air for exercise, and also some apparently free birds dart constantly from one tall building to another. I have also seen single birds and even flocks flying in a straight line across the city. As for the House Sparrows, only one or two pair winter here as a rule; others arrive in the spring, to raise their broods, to spend the summer and most of the fall. In the fall these birds, quite numerous at this season, spend the day elsewhere but return in the late afternoon to spend the night under the eaves. These sparrows often drive away more "interesting" birds; thus they constitute an unfavorable element in this environment for the visiting birds. Starlings, though common permanent residents of the city, rarely appear in this neighborhood. Only three birds seen: Feb. 16, 1945 (attacked and driven away by sparrows); Dec. 8, 1948; May 9, 1949. Herring Gulls may be mentioned, since they are frequently seen flying over this part of the city in winter, and rarely in summer. Winter Residents Duck Hawks [Peregrine Falcons]. The last five winters (1946-50) I have seen a Duck Hawk and at times two hawks, on and about a tall building several blocks' away. I first discovered and identified this bird on Oct. 7, 1946; the next day it perched in one spot all day long. I saw it again the following day, but not after that until Jan. 6, 1947; then again on Mar. 5. On Oct 9 1947, I saw two Duck Hawks; that winter I saw one or two birds at frequent intervals (on 17 days) up until Mar. 7, 1948. On Nov. 5 1947, I saw a Duck Hawk and a Buteo circling about (the Buteo looked to me like a Broad-wing, but a Broad-wing is most improbable on this date); the Duck Hawk attacked the Buteo and drove it away and a short time after, I saw the Duck Hawk perched on a ledge of the building plucking a pigeon. On Jan. 21, 1948, I noted pigeons streaming across the sky in all directions and among them the Duck Hawk. During the winter of 1948-49 I saw one or two Duck Hawks on 11 dates (Sept. 24 to Feb. 3). In the fall of 1949 I discovered the Duck Hawk quite early (Sept. 2), but did not see it again until Nov. 4. I saw one or two hawks again on 13 days between Nov. 5, 1949, and Apr. 19, 1950. (On Feb. 7, I saw one of the hawks catch a Pigeon.) In 1950 I spotted the Duck Hawk on Sept. 20 and on nine other days up to and including Dec. 2. (On this last date I saw the hawk drop like a dive bomber, from a great height, onto a flock of Pigeons.) As I revise this paper, on Jan. 19, 1951, I have just seen two Duck Hawks. On Oct. 11, 1945, a small hawk-like bird pursued a smaller bird across the rooftops toward me, wheeled and flew away; it seems to me extremely likely that this was a Sparrow Hawk [American Kestrel].
juvenile Herring Gull on 14 October 2015 at Pelham Bay Park
Migrants Once about six years ago (I did not record the date) I caught sight of perhaps a dozen large grayish birds that flew over this house at rooftop level and rounded the corner of a taller building. I had no time to distinguish markings, but I am now convinced that these birds must have been Black-crowned Night Herons. Laughing Gulls. May 6, 1950 (overhead); May 26, 1951. Black-billed Cuckoos. Sept. 23, 1947; Sept. 9, 1950 (immatures). Yellow-billed Cuckoo. Sept. 26, 1949. Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Spring of 1943 (at geranium on window sill). Belted Kingfisher. March 22, 1951, female seen at 7a.m. and 11:30a.m.-1p.m., perching in the tree and on a building. Flickers. Regular visitors in the fall; seen on 15 dates between Sept. 25 and Oct 23; also, when there are waves of migrating birds passing overhead I usually recognize Flickers among them. Only two spring birds: Apr. 11, 1947; Apr. 7, 1950. Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers. Eleven fall birds: Sept. 24-Oct. 16. Hairy Woodpeckers. July 8, 1949; (or Downy.?) Sept. 21, 1949; Nov. 6, 1949 (2). (Woodpeckers do not, as a rule, remain here more than a few minutes.) Crested Flycatchers. Sept. 21, 1947; May 31, 1949. Phoebes. I have 14 fall dates for Phoebes: Sept 21-Oct. 24. Phoebes seem to feel quite at home here, and have stayed, I feel sure, for two or three days. My only spring dates are Mar. 28 and Apr. 8, 1949. Yellow-bellied Flycatchers. June 12 and Oct. 6, 1945; Sept. 25, 1946. Wood Pewees. Seven spring birds: May 11-June 2; five fall birds: Sept. 13-17. Singing Pewees, May 22, 27, 1951. Least Flycatchers. (some may be other Empidonaces). Six spring birds: Apr. 29-May 30; 12 fall birds: Aug. 16-Oct. 14. Blue Jays are regular visitors, spring and fall; I've seen 38: May 7-June 13; Sept. 22-Oct. 29. Flock of six on May 8, 1948. Often the Jay comes in screaming, terrifying and enraging the House Sparrows. Chickadees. Seen only in Oct., 1949 (eight birds, Oct. 2-23); on the first date three birds announced themselves with their characteristic name call. White-breasted Nuthatch. Spring, 1943. Red-breasted Nuthatches. Sept. 13, 16, and Oct 9, 1946; Sept. 22, 1948; Sept. 26, 1949. Brown Creepers are regular in the fall (26 birds). One appeared on the remarkably early date of Aug. 31 (1949); other dates: Sept, 24-Oct. 29. This bird is always heard giving its shrill little cry. I have not yet seen the Creeper here in the spring. House Wrens. Oct. 16, 1944; Oct. 8 and 15, 1948; Sept. 25, 1950. Winter Wrens. Oct. 11, 1945 (2); Oct, 3, 9, and 22, 1947. Catbirds. Five in May; one on Aug. 19, 1945; eight between Sept. 22 and Oct. 19. Brown Thrashers are regular visitors (21 birds): Apr. 29-May 18; Sept. 13-Oct. 2. The Robin is a fairly common bird in this locality. But I have only two spring dates: Apr. 14, 1945, and Apr. 18, 1950 (4). The Robin is the only bird, besides a Hairy Woodpecker, to visit the area to my knowledge in July: July 1 and 4, 1945; July 14 and 28, 1946; July 21, 1950. I have seen 24 Robins in the fall: Sept. 28-Nov. 7. Robins do not seem to feel at home here; they do not stay long. Wood Thrushes. Oct. 4, 1945; May 3 and 14, 1947; May 5, 1950; heard one singing on May 22, 1947. The Hermit Thrush is, next to the Junco, my commonest visiting bird. He seems to feel at home, and sometimes remains for two or three days. The numerous cats are a hazard to this ground-feeder; I once rescued a young Hermit, its wing broken, from a cat. I have seen about 75 Hermits here, only 18 being spring birds: Apr. 11-May 6; fall dates: Oct. 8-Nov. 13. Gray-cheeked and Olive-backed [Swainson's] Thrushes. It took me several years to learn to distinguish one of these species from the other, so that my earliest dates are confused. The Olive-back is regular in the fall (Sept. 1-Oct. 10), but I have recorded only seven spring birds: May 20-25 and June 7. On May 23, 1949, a bird sang at intervals from seven o'clock to one. I have recorded five spring Gray-cheeks: May 15-23, one a singing bird; and five fall birds: Oct. 4, 1946; Sept. 15, 1948 (2); Sept. 21 and Oct. 1, 1949. Olive-backs sang, 6-10 a.m., May 22, 1951. Veeries. Sept. 12, 1946; Sept. 10 and 15, 1947; May 12, 1948; May 23, 1949; May 6, 1950. Golden-crowned Kinglets. Twenty-three fall birds: Oct. 4-Nov. 1; five spring birds; Mar. 30-May 6. Ruby-crowned Kinglets. Twenty-five fall birds: Sept. 16-Oct. 31; twelve spring birds: Apr. 13-May 16. The kinglets seem to feel at home, and the records would indicate that the birds sometimes stay overnight here. White-eyed Vireos. Oct. 4, 1948; May 19, 1949. Red-eyed Vireos. Sept. 8 and 26, 1949; June 3, 1950. Singing bird(s): May 22, 23, 1951.
male Common Yellowthroat by Deborah Allen in Central Park, September 2018
Warblers. Until I got the 1947 edition of Peterson's Field Guide I had to let a number of warblers, especially fall birds, go unidentified. Most of the warblers seem to feel at home in this situation and find enough food to keep them here sometimes for hours, sometimes for two or three days. Though I have heard only a few singing warblers here, the warblers usually call attention to themselves by chipping as they feed. Black-and-white W. Nine spring birds: Apr. 27-May 17; six fall birds: Aug. 16-Sept. 26. Tennessee W. Two on Sept. 22, 1950. Also Aug. 19, 1951. Orange-crowned W. Oct. 25, 1949 (and perhaps once or twice before). Parula W. Six spring birds: May 3-17; four fall birds: Aug. 28-Oct. 4. Yellow W. May 17, 1944; May 10, 1946; May 19, 20, Sept. 27 and 28, 1947; Aug. 30 and Sept. 8, 1949. Magnolia W. Four spring birds: May 16, 1945; May 12, 17, 1946; May 20, 1947. Eight fall birds: Sept. 20, 24 (2), Oct. 3, 1947; Sept. 22, 29, 1948; Sept. 10, 1949; Sept. 20, 1950. Cape May W. May 17, 1946 (female). Black-throated Blue W. Sept. 27, Oct. 10, 1945; May 13, 1946 (f.); May 13 (f.), Sept. 24, Oct. 2 and 3, 1947; May 9, 1948; Sept. 19, 1949. Myrtle W [Yellow-rumped W.]. Twenty-two fall birds: Oct. 3-Nov. 1; only four in spring: May 2 (2), 6, and 17, 1946. Black-throated Green W. Thirteen fall birds: Oct. 4, 1945; Sept. 22, Oct. 13, 1946; Sept. 24, 26, 27, Oct. 1 (2), 10, 1947; Sept. 11, 26 (2), Oct. 1, 1949; only two spring birds: May 17, 1947; May 1, 1948. Chestnut-sided W. Three birds on Sept. 17, 1947. Bay-breasted W. Sept. 7 (2-3 birds), 8, and 20, 1949. Black-poll W. Eight spring birds: May 17, 1945 (2); May 23, 1946; May 19, 1949; May 20, 31, June 1 (2), 1950: nineteen fall birds: Sept. 26, 27, Oct. 1 (3), 2, 3, 1947; Sept. 14, 1948; Sept. 25, 26, 29, 30, Oct. 1 (2), 2, 16, 1949; Sept. 20, 21, 25, 1950. Prairie W. May 2 and 3, 1947. Yellow Palm W. Apr. 29, 1946. Ovenbirds. Sixteen spring birds: Apr. 29-May 24; three in fall. Sept. 26, 1946; Aug. 30 and Sept. 26, 1947. This bird is usually seen walking on the ground, as in the woods. Louisiana Water-thrushes. May 17, 1946; Aug. 4, Sept. 3 (Northern?), 1950. Connecticut or Mourning W. Three times (Oct. 14, 1946; Oct. 9, 1947; Sept. 22, 1950) I glimpsed warblers that must have been one of these two species, but each time I have been unable to make a positive identification. Singing male, Mourning W., May 26, 1951. [Common] Yellow-throats. Thirteen spring birds: May 3-31 (one killed by a cat); three in fall: Aug. 28 and Sept. 20, 1947; Sept. 29, 1948. Wilson's W. May 21, 1945; Sept. 14, 1946; June 7, 1948. Canada W. May 15 and 23, 1947; May 23, 1949 (2); May 25, Sept. 18 and 22, 1950. Redstarts. Seven spring birds: May 18, 1945; May 16, 17, 23, 1946; May 26, 1949; May 24, 25, 1950; seventeen fall birds: Sept. 23, 1944; Sept. 9, 1945; Aug. 12, 1946; Aug. 28, 29, Oct. 1, 1947; Aug. 5, Sept. 26, 29, 30, 1949; Aug. 24, 30, 31, Sept. 2, 14, 20, 27, 1950. Bobolinks. Heard characteristic "spink" at 6:30 a.m., Aug. 25, 1950; bird(s) flew before seen. Baltimore Orioles. May 17, 1946 (2); two imm. Sept. 25, 1949. On July 24, 1951: atypical Oriole; long white patch on wing; entire back and back of head orange. Grackles. Oct. 21, 1948 (3). Scarlet Tanagers. It was, I have related, the brilliant spring male Tanager, seen in 1942 and again in 1943, that first startled me into the realization that not all back-yard birds are English Sparrows. Since 1943 I have seen the spring Tanager May 14 and 20, 1947, and May 23, 1950. But I have seen 15 fall Tanagers: Sept. 12-Oct. 11. These birds sometimes spend the entire day hereabouts, and, I believe, sometimes stay more than one day. Rose-breasted Grosbeaks. Sept. 26, 1946 (m.); Sept. 21, 1950 (2 imm.). Indigo Buntings. Oct. 1 and 3, 1947 (both f.). Purple Finches. Oct. 11, 1945, and Apr. 26, 1949 (both males; the April bird sang) Redpoll. Apr. 15, 1944. Goldfinches. Nov. 13, 1947; Oct 19, 1948 (3). Towhees. Regular visitors, spring and fall. Eighteen spring birds: Apr. 27-May 23; eight in fall: Oct. 1-11. The Towhee, like the Hermit Thrush and the Junco, is often on the ground and much in danger from cats. Savannah Sparrows. Oct. 4, 1948; Apr. 27, 1950 (2). Grasshopper ? Sparrow. Oct. 20, 1947 (immature bird, streaked; a probable identification). Slate-colored Juncos. The Junco is the commonest of my backyard birds in the fall; I have seen about 95 Juncos at this season, sometimes in small flocks: Sept. 29-Nov. 24, and one on Dec. 29, 1950. But spring Juncos have been few: one on Feb. 20, 1945; five in March; four in April; two in May (May 6, 1947; May 10, 1950). I usually see the Junco feeding on the ground. Tree Sparrow. Nov. 15, 1949. Chipping Sparrows. May 10-11, 1948; Oct. 18, 1949, May 10, 1950. Field Sparrows. Oct. 14, 1946; Oct. 9 (3) and 24, 1947; May 10, 1950. White-crowned Sparrows. Oct. 9, 1944 (2). White-throated Sparrows. These birds are very common visitors, following the Juncos and Hermit Thrushes in numbers. My first acquaintance with this bird occurred on May 2, 1944, when I heard a thump at the window and found a pair of these beautiful little birds bouncing up and down on the window ledge (looking at their reflections, I suppose). I have seen 20 White-throats in the spring (Apr. 17-May 19) and about 45 in the fall (Sept. 24-Nov. 2). Fox Sparrows. Early spring migrant: Mar. 14, 1945; Mar. 25, 1947; Mar. 19, 1948; late fall migrant: Nov. 12, 1944; Oct. 15, 1948; Oct. 25, 1949. Swamp Sparrows. May 2, Oct. 9 (imm.), 1947; Apr. 17, 1948; Oct. 16 and 19, 1949; Oct. 16, 1950. Song Sparrows. Nine spring birds: Mar. 20-31 and May 31 (several of these birds sang); 14 fall birds: Oct. 1-25. I find that I have presented a list of 79 species of birds that I have identified from my apartment windows, besides at least five or six other species which, through inexperience or insufficient opportunity for observation, I have been unable to identify positively. Thus it would seem to be well established that most of the commoner passerine birds, and some of the relatively uncommon ones, do not hesitate to settle for a few moments, and sometimes for several days, in the back yards of Manhattan. Also one may occasionally see various species of hawks, or marsh or water birds overhead. Some Additional Comments "Bird Days." As waves of migrating birds pass over Manhattan, the result for me is the occurrence of what I call "bird days." My best bird day so far has been October 9, 1947, a warm, partly cloudy day with, I believe, a southerly wind. I was awakened by bird calls at about six o'clock. During the next two hours hundreds of birds passed overhead, all flying north (a local movement, probably, and not the only time I have noted flocks of birds flying northward in the fall, at this location). Of the flying birds, I could recognize numerous Flickers. My two Duck Hawks turned up for the first time that fall. In the trees outside there appeared, between six and eight o'clock, a Flicker, three Sapsuckers, a Winter Wren, two Hermit Thrushes, a small flock of Ruby-crowned Kinglets, a Junco, a Song Sparrow, a Swamp Sparrow, and about a dozen White-throats. Later that day I saw a Creeper, a Connecticut or Mourning Warbler, and three Field Sparrows. Species Seen Most Frequently, with number of visits given in parentheses. Junco (c. 105), Hermit Thrush (c. 75), White-throated Sparrow (c. 65), Olive-backed Thrush (c. 45 = Swainson's Thrush), Blue Jay (38), Ruby-crowned Kinglet (37), Robin (34), Golden-crowned Kinglet (28), Black-poll Warbler (27), Brown Creeper (26), Myrtle Warbler (26), Towhee (26), Redstart (23), Song Sparrow (23), Brown Thrasher (21), Scarlet Tanager (20), Ovenbird (19), Empidonaces (18), Phoebe (16), Yellowthroat (16), Flicker (15 perching, many flying). Black-and-white Warbler (15), Black-throated Green Warbler (15), Catbird (14), Pewee (12), Magnolia Warbler (12), Sapsucker (11), Gray-cheeked Thrush (10?), Parula Warbler (10). Total Number of Visiting Birds Seen. Eliminating Pigeons, House Sparrows, and Gulls, and birds flying overhead, I have recorded about 1000 birds in this location during the seven-year period 1944-50. Fall and Spring Birds. During the seven years 1944-50 inclusive, I have seen an average of about 40 visiting birds each spring and a little over 100 visiting birds each fall. It is striking that I have seen 26 Brown Creepers and 11 Sapsuckers in the fall, but none of either species in the spring; other species have been common in the fall and more or less uncommon in the spring. (See data.) Singing Birds. Few visiting birds feel sufficiently at home in this area to sing. But I have heard the Song Sparrow singing on three occasions. Of the thrushes, the Gray-cheek and the Wood Thrush have given out brief bits of song, and an Olive-back once sang boldly at intervals from 7:00 to 1:00. I have had three singing Redstarts: on Aug. 28-29, 1947, May 24, 1950, and Aug. 30, 1950. Two Black-polls sang on June 1, 1950. Lastly, a Purple Finch wakened me with its rich voice on April 26, 1949 (but took flight the moment it saw me looking at it). In 1951: Pewees, May 22, 27; Olive-backs [Swainson's], May 22, 26; Red-eyed Vireo, May 22, 23; Ovenbirds, May 9, 13; Mourning Warblers, May 26; Redstart, May 7; White-throats, May 9, 11.
Great Egret in Central Park on 23 June 2019 by Deborah Allen