Unbelievable balmy day for January. Drove over to Union Springs to see what birds might be there.
Pulling in beside the Mill Pond immediately observed a bevy of Mallards and Canada Geese along the east and west shorelines of the pond. Counted 65 Mallards and 35 Canada Geese. Then to my surprise a new duck came into view through my binoculars. After referring to my Sibley’s I realized it was a Bufflehead. While I have seen Buffleheads in the past this one was the closest that I have ever come upon.
Proceeded to the Factory Street pond. The Eastern Screech Owl was not home today. But there were 13 Mallards and 2 Redheads, one male and one female.
Scoring the Bufflehead and the Redheads made my initial foray for 2011 a satisfactory venture.
This cold but snowless afternoon I decided to refer once again to Rich and Sue Freeman’s Take a Hike! Family Walks in New York’s Finger Lakes Region Guide Book (Footprint Press) and revisit the Auburn-Fleming Trail.
Previous walks October and November 2008 – January 2010 – April 2010 – Auburn-Fleming Trail – Bird Tour.
Parked at the south entrance on Route 34 across from Dacy’s Auto Shop. Upon entering the path I encountered a gentleman. He indicated that the trail was walkable just be careful of icy patches.
Two horses were outside the barn on my right as I started my trek.
The trail was easy walking. However there were no birds with the exception of two cawing crows off in the woods to my left. I also heard two other bird calls but I could not identify either.
I went as far as about 200 yards pass the first bridge. Upon turning around I noticed a man and his dog coming from the Dunning Avenue entrance. They followed me almost to the car. But once I get in the car they turned and retraced their steps.
Took a drive south on Rt. 34. After passing Willowbrook road there on the wire to my left was a Red-Tail Hawk. Turned around in the next driveway and returned to take some photos of the hawk through the front windshield. Got out of the car and the hawk took often towards the woods stopping to perch in a tree along the hedgerow. Just then another hawk flew across the field and a white-tail deer skirted along the edge of the woods.
The two hawks made the trip worthwhile.
Driving home I pulled over on Stone School Road to take a photo of Owasco Lake.
The Auburn-Fleming Trail
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