Re: FOY Joy!
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Awesome day, Tom, and thx for a vote of confidence, but I'd rely more on Jay because while I have a lot of experience, I don't necessarily remember it... ;-)
Whereas Jay has excellent eyes, ears, memory and a lot of experience
There's another factor we don't often discuss... not long ago several of us had this game.... we'd each play a recorded bird on a specific CD set and challenge the others to name all the background songs, chirps, calls, wing sounds, whatever, and of course I always lost because those other birders were quite younger than I was, and they could separate most sounds from the "milieu" whereas I had lost much of that ability...
Spring Migration Rocks !!!!
From: "Tom McCabe" <tmccabe9@...>
To: "IBLE" <IBLE@groups.io>
Sent: Monday, April 27, 2020 4:51:17 PM
Subject: [IBLE] FOY Joy!
Since yesterday on the greenbelt was so crowded (social distancing notwithstanding), I was happy to jump out while it was still raining today because that always reduces greenbelt traffic. I was not disappointed.
My first FOY of the day was a Spotted Sandpiper at the main pond at Esther Simplot. I’m hoping he hangs around for a while.
Next was a Yellow Warbler singing from the trees by the river. Never saw him, but he brought me joy.
Then at the lower end of Veterans Pond there was a pair of Blue-winged Teal. This is not common for “my” stretch of the greenbelt at any time of the year.
At Les Bois track I was pleased to find multiple Western Kingbirds. They have nested around the south end of the track in prior years, so this is a good sign. Also at that end was a pair of Bank Swallows, but the overflow pond that used to attract them is now grassy, so I doubt they will linger.
But the real treat was a flock of 10 American Avocets that flew in tight formation into Quinn’s Pond while Susan was watching. I came along a few minutes later, and they were out in the middle swimming. I had a vague recollection that they, like Phalaropes, swim, but I wasn’t sure. So both Larry Arnold and Jay Carlisle, my go-to experts on such things, confirmed that AMAV’s are swimmers. And while I was watching the Avocets, I realized that a Western Grebe, another FOY, had joined the mixed flock of Buffleheads, Cinnamon Teal and Ruddy Ducks that were on the pond in the morning.
Everywhere I went today, not only did I find the first of year birds listed above, but I also found lots of ducks, swallows and other birds that helped me to tally 51 species in 13 miles. A great day!
Tom McCabe, Boise