Monday, April 27, 2015

Domestic arrangements

While Spring migration is in full swing, some birds are settling in for nesting season...or trying to. At Turtle Pond in Central Park, a pair of Downy Woodpeckers are excavating a nest hole in a willow tree. Saturday, we saw a Hairy Woodpecker come around...and the Downys chased him away. Elena got a photo of the action.

Downy vs Hairy
Woodpecker dispute (Photo by Elena Gaillard)

Meanwhile, on the pond's shore directly below, a pair of Mallards was browsing. A second male flew in--and then scooted right back out. The male of the pair chased the interloper all around the pond, hanging onto his tail.

Ed Gaillard: birds &emdash; Duck duel
take that, you bounder!

Things were a little calmer away from the water. Singing was everywhere, as males advertised for mates. Passing migrants sang:

Ed Gaillard: birds &emdash; Pine Warbler singing, Central Park
it's been a great Spring for Pine Warblers in the Park.

Resident birds sang as well, some not so musically,

Ed Gaillard: birds &emdash; Red-Winged Blackbird singing, Azalea Pond
whaddaya mean? I sound great!

while others seemed possessed by the spirit of Al Jolson.

Ed Gaillard: birds &emdash; Starling singing, Central Park
I'd walk a million miles for one of your smiles

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