June 12, 2005
As the result of a small but real wildlife tragedy, we made a brief, unscheduled visit to the Blue Ridge today. Jacqueline saw a neighbor's cat attack one of the chipmunks that lives in our back yard, and saved the poor thing's life, just barely. We took it to the Wildlife Center of Virginia, near Waynesboro, where the veterinarians administered painkillers while keeping it under observation... Unleashed cats often kill songbirds, especially newly-fledged young ones. Let this be a lesson for cat owners: See the American Bird Conservancy for information on Cats indoors! The Campaign for Safer Birds and Cats.
Since we were in the area, we took a casual drive around, and at the entrance to Lake Sherando I spotted a Louisiana waterthrush for the first time this year. The Blue-gray gnatcatchers that had built a nest there were nowhere to be seen, however, so I presume the babies have already fledged. Then we drove up the Blue Ridge and saw some Worm-eating warblers, a Blue-headed vireo (close!), a female Scarlet tanager, an Ovenbird, and some Redstarts.
Note that many of the birds listed on the Wild Birds page now show popup photos when you click on their names.