Carolina Wren

A Carolina Wren

Payne County rare birds of the week include Dark-eyed Junco, and Pink-sided and Slate-colored Dark-eyed Juncos, Canvasback, Solitary Sandpiper, and Harris’s Sparrow.

Early mornings are showing us a stream of migrants at Boomer Lake like this Wednesday’s few Gadwall among a group of 15 Double-crested Cormorants. The male cormorants were still in their breeding dress with a single female among them. Looking around in the same vicinity, a Killdeer was out on a west side jetty nearest the water seeking its first meal of the day. Two Great Egrets were side by side just off the pier not far from a couple of Great Blue Herons with another lone blue enjoying the quiet of Heron Cove. Canada Geese and Mallards made their normal appearance, as did House Sparrow and House Finch.

Multiple Myrtle Yellow-rumped Warblers were dining upon the insects on the east side of the lake along with only one Orange-crowned Warbler, while a Northern Mockingbird observed, soon departing to see what the yellow-rumps were having.

One Blue Jay called in the distance moving further away, while a Downy Woodpecker announced its presence on a nearby tree with its specific drill. An American Crow gave the call-to-arms though no compatriots answered, and the call of an Eastern Bluebird became the highlight. Our occasional Carolina Wren visitor came on the scene belting out its classic song, as though it was the only one that deserved to be heard.

A single Mourning Dove shared the high wires with almost a dozen starlings, one of which was sounding the Mississippi Kite call, a common sound for the wrong time of year to try to prove otherwise.

We then moved to OSU Botanic Garden for several Rock Pigeons, followed up with our seasonable Red-tailed Hawk, Red-bellied, Downy, and Hairy Woodpeckers, and a Yellow-shafted Northern Flicker. Multiple Blue Jays, American Crows, and Carolina Chickadees announced their presence, while a good dozen American Robins, House Finches, Chipping Sparrows, Dark-eyed Juncos, and Northern Cardinals formed another segment of the fall clan. We rounded out the numbers with a Red-winged Blackbird.

Whittenberg Park added Green-winged Teal, Pied-billed Grebe, Red-shouldered Hawk, and Brown-headed Cowbird to the mix.

Yesterday October 18, the OSU Research Range counted Eurasian Collared-Dove, Turkey Vulture, Eastern Phoebe, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Sprague’s Pipit (an unusual find), as well as Vesper, LeConte’s, and Savannah Sparrows, and Eastern Meadowlark.

Lake Carl Blackwell then gave us good representation with Gadwall, Redhead, and a Ruddy Duck, as well as several American Coots, mostly Franklin’s and a few Ring-billed Gulls, multiple Turkey Vultures, Belted Kingfisher, a few Barn Swallows, and almost a dozen Chipping Sparrows (or chippies).

Boomer Lake’s numbers included Blue-winged Teal, Ring-necked Duck, Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, and the Western Meadowlark.

Just a reminder that it is still appropriate to leave those hummingbird feeders out until mid-November for any stragglers that might be on their way through the area heading south or east, whatever the case may be. You could even claim bragging rights to a new species for Payne County!

Deb Hirt is a wild bird rehabilitator and photographer living in Stillwater.

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