Photos from 04-30-15 – Nyquist Harcourt Sanctuary

Common Mergansers

Common Mergansers

Another week, another visit to a local hiking spot.  Seeing that I had some success in New Paltz last time at Nyquist Harcourt Sanctuary, I went back for another hike.

There were several new birds at the park this time around, including new Spring arrivals, such as my first gray catbird and green heron of the season.  There were also several female common mergansers on the Wallkill river as well.

At one point, it actually starting to flurry!  While it didn’t amount to anything, to see snow at the end of April was a real downer, especially after the difficult winter we had.  Thankfully, it was the last reminder of winter, as Spring powered through and remained.

You can view the rest of the photos by clicking the link below.  Continue reading

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Photos from 04-26-15 – Vassar Farm

Yellow Warbler

Yellow Warbler

The quest for warblers continues, this time at Vassar Farm in Poughkeepsie.  At the back pond area off the main gravel road, there were several warblers, including my first of the season yellow warbler.

The yellow warbler was joined by several yellow-rumped warblers too, of which I also got photos of.

Rounding out the day included a couple of run in with hawks, bluebirds, and sparrows, all of which can be seen in the latest gallery.

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Photos from 04-25-15 – Franny Reese State Park

Pine Warbler

Pine Warbler

For the second straight time in a row at Franny Reese State Park in Highland, I encountered a very cooperative species.  This time, it was a pine warbler, a species I don’t run in to very often.  Singing and basking in morning light resulting in the most striking photos I’ve gotten of this guy.

I didn’t see much else that day, but I have plenty of pine warbler of shots to share in the latest gallery:

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Photos from 04-24-15 – Nyquist Harcourt Sanctuary

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Just around the corner from the Gilded Otter Brewpub in New Paltz is the Nyquist Harcourt Wildlife Sanctuary.  This unique spot is a place I’ve tried to visit more frequently since it’s somewhat close to where I live.

Along the Wallkill River, I stumbled upon both palm warblers and yellow-rumped warblers.  Warblers are my spring time obsession, as many of you know. 😛

Warblers, as well as other birds from the day, are included in the attached gallery:

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Photos from 04-19-15 – Franny Reese State Park

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Living in Ulster County, the closest spot for me from my home is a place called Franny Reese State Park.  I wanted to try and explore this place a little bit more since there isn’t much data on eBird for this location.  The thought of finding a spot not commonly birded always intrigues me, because I never know what I might come across.

On this day, I came across a nice variety of species, but one in particular stole the show.  One of most cooperative blue-gray gnatcatchers put on quite a singing display near the trail, allowing me excellent looks and photos.  Those, as well as others seen during the day, are included in this post’s gallery.

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Photos from 04-18-15 – Peach Hill Park/Vassar Farm

Barred Owl

Barred Owl

Warmer weather means more birds and longer hikes!  I spent a considerable amount of time at Peach Hill Park and Vassar Farm on this day, and it was a terrific day.

Not only did I see my first warbler of the year, I also spotted my first barred owls of the year!  I was awe struck as the owl glided silently overhead and into a tree.  The pictures didn’t come out great, but it’s not everyday you see in owl in the afternoon!

This, as well as many other photos, can be seen in the gallery.  It’s a larger one, so I hope that you enjoy all the shots. 🙂

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Photos from 04-17-15 – Shawangunk Grasslands

Eastern Meadowlark

Eastern Meadowlark

I wasn’t able to look for short-eared owls this year at the Grasslands, but thankfully, winter isn’t the only time to see interesting birds there!

It was an extremely overcast day, and I only had one goal… find and photograph an eastern meadowlark.  I heard them almost immediately after stepping out of my car, but they are a very shy species.

After nearly 30 minutes, I began to see a couple on the ground.  When their backs were turned to me, I barely noticed them!  It wasn’t until they turned did their bright yellow markings make them an easy target.

I also saw some kestrels from afar as well, which are also contained in the gallery below.

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