Date: Mon, 4 Oct 2010 12:24:10 -0700
Reply-To: Joel McNeal <j.mcneal@YAHOO.COM>
Sender: Georgia Birders Online <GABO-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From: Joel McNeal <j.mcneal@YAHOO.COM>
Subject: Mourning & Nashville Warblers,
Philly Vireo @ State Botanical Garden: 4Oct10
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The drop in temperature overnight brought quite a changeover in birds with it here in Athens. Most unexpected was a juvenile-plumaged MOURNING WARBLER at the State Botanical Garden's beaverpond wetland. I first heard the call notes of a Swamp Sparrow (my personal first of the season here) and, being greedy, decided to pish a bit to get a look at the bird. My pishing serendipitously caused the Mourning Warbler to crawl out to the edge of a dense tangle and let out 3 of its 'spwick' calls. The bird gave me good looks at all the requisite field marks before ducking back into the thick undergrowth. Richard Hall and I did an intensive search for the next few hours to relocate the bird but came up empty.
If you do try for this bird, please keep in mind that using playback and trampling habitat is seriously frowned upon here (also see the ABA code of ethics: http://www.aba.org/about/ethics.html , namely section 1B which states- emphasis mine- "Limit the use of recordings and other methods of attracting birds, and NEVER use such methods in HEAVILY BIRDED AREAS, or for attracting any species that is Threatened, Endangered, or of Special Concern, or is RARE IN YOUR LOCAL AREA."). A juvenile bird might be just as likely to be driven off rather than drawn in by playing songs or calls anyway.
If not for the Mourning, the highlight would have been the botgarden's first NASHVILLE WARBLER of the year (and a county year-bird for me, much to Richard's chagrin). And if not for those, a PHILADELPHIA VIREO, my second ever at the botgarden (both this year) would have been fine.
Sharp-shinned Hawk 1 flying high, heading S
Yellow-billed Cuckoo 5
Red-headed Woodpecker 3
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker 1
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 4
Eastern Wood-Pewee 8
Yellow-throated Vireo 2
Philadelphia Vireo 1 white trail side of powerline near river
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 5 three in privet eradication area
Swainson's Thrush 3
Wood Thrush 1
Brown Thrasher 20
Swamp Sparrow 1
Scarlet Tanager 5
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 6
Indigo Bunting 20
Warblers (14+ species)
Tennessee Warbler 8
Nashville Warbler 1 lower powerline on right ~40 yards towards river from lower lot
Chestnut-sided Warbler 12
Magnolia Warbler 15
Blackburnian Warbler 1 eye-level in main garden shrubbery
Yellow-throated Warbler 1 in Sycamore, as usual in fall migration
Pine Warbler 2
Palm Warbler (Western) 1
Bay-breasted Warbler 1 junction of orange and orange-spur trails
American Redstart 8
Northern Waterthrush 1
Mourning Warbler 1 Edge of beaverpond; juvenile plumage, with mustard-yellow from throat to vent, solid olive upperparts with no wingbars. Extremely thin, broken eye-ring and very slight extension of olive back color onto breast (giving a slightly vested look). Shortish tail with 'beefy' undertail coverts. Gave 3 loud 'pwich' notes and skulked into view in response to pishing, then ducked back into dense vegetation and wasn't relocated despite intensive effort.
Common Yellowthroat 4
Hooded Warbler 5
(Richard also added an Ovenbird for the day)
Earlier in the morning I stopped by the UGA fields southward and across Milledge Ave. and turned up 6 BOBOLINKS as well as my first local SAVANNAH SPARROWS of the fall. A female Black-throated Blue Warbler in trees along the railroad tracks was a good omen of what was to come.
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