By Seth Davis
On Saturday, October 21st, two young birders led our team around Mt. Agamenticus and the Center for Wildlife, and we had a blast! Despite it being the tail end of fall migration and having slightly unfavorable winds, we had a pretty “birdy” day.
Some of the highlights on the mountain included Red-bellied and Pileated Woodpeckers, a close interaction with a mixed flock of Black-capped Chickadees, Golden- and Ruby-crowned Kinglets, and a Brown Creeper. After hiking around, we came upon some fallen logs and decided to perch on them for a while. As we rested, we exchanged nature stories about our personally memorable encounters with wildlife. We left our mark on Mt. A in the form of some MYBC graffiti. (Don’t worry! We used pieces of charcoal that we found to draw the silhouettes of birds and tracks on some rocks. These will wash off in the rain soon.) We “topped” it all off with a hawk watch at the peak of Mt. A, where we spotted 12 Turkey Vultures and 5 Red-tailed Hawks.
We then drove to the base of Mt. A. to the Center for Wildlife, where we did a self-guided tour. This was a fun experience, since we got close-up views of awesome wildlife like a Long-eared Owl, Merlin, Porcupine, and some Painted Turtles! We also learned about how the Center for Wildlife cares for sick and injured animals. (As we were walking around, we also had three Common Ravens fly overhead, croaking loudly.) Toward the end of the tour, one of the staff—Sarah Kern—was kind enough to bring out one of their ambassador Peregrine Falcons, Freyja, and she fed her a quail and a couple of mice. Watching this majestic falcon feed at such a close distance was simply incredible. Sarah shared with us a wealth of information about Peregrine Falcon ecology and behavior, and she answered our many questions. Thank you, Sarah, and the Center for Wildlife, for being the highlight of our day for all the hard work you do to help wildlife.
Our full eBird list can be found here. Thanks to our two young birders, Brendan and Anna, for making the day super fun and reminding us how a walk in the woods can be so rejuvenating and uplifting.