May 27, 2006 [LINK]

Montgomery Hall Park

I had an errand to run in the western part of Staunton today, so I figured I might as well stop at Montgomery Hall Park for a few minutes. No warblers were visible, but I did see a Pewee for the first time this season. Today's highlights:

I also heard but did not see a Blackpoll warbler (close but elusive) and a Red-bellied woodpecker.

On Wednesday morning behind the Staunton-Augusta Rescue Squad, I saw two Wilson's warblers, some cedar waxwings, a Red-eyed vireo, and an Indigo bunting. This is pretty much the end of spring migration season, and I'm surprised that I didn't hear more Blackpoll warblers this year; they are usually very common in the latter part of May.

Martha returns to George

"Martha," the female Bald eagle that was injured in a fight with another female and then rescued early last month was released a few days ago after her wounds healed. She found her way back to the Potomac River bridge construction site south of D.C. where she had built a nest, and her mate "George" was waiting for her. Eagles, like Canada geese and other large birds, tend to form long-lasting conjugal relationships, so these two will presumably try to raise another brood next year. George tried to incubate the eggs for a couple days after Martha was injured, and one chick may have hatched, but if so, it didn't live long. See Washington Post. Lest you get all sentimental over this episode, remember that eagles typicaly lay two eggs, and the chick that hatches first usually pushes the second one out of the next. Survival of the fittest!