Tuesday, July 24, 2012

High Point Summer II: More Special Birds

[It's a baby! Recently fledged Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, High Point State Park, Sussex County, NJ last weekend. Sapsuckers only began breeding in NJ within our lifetimes - unless you are a very young birder. Now they are the most common woodpecker in High Point. The brown fades to buff and white by the time we see the youngsters in migration.]

It's hard to get past warblers, hence the previous essay. And I love the little bright sprites, but High Point is a woodpecker haven, too,with all of them except Red-headed breeding. And Red-headed used to, in the abundant beaver ponds up there, and perhaps does still and if not, hopefully will again.
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker is a real story, going from never having bred in NJ (okay, there's a report from the 50's) to colonizing in the '90's to being now the most common woodpecker of this north Jersey boreal forest outpost. 

 [Eastern Wood-pewees are single brooded, and yet a number were still singing last weekend. Trying to re-nest after weather-ruined first attempts, perhaps, or just singing because they like to.]

 [Song Sparrows, in contrast to pewees, are at least double-brooded, sometimes having 3 or even 4 sets of offspring in a year. This one poked about our Sawmill Lake Campground site for food to bring its young, in this case a tiny grasshopper picked from near the grill. We could hear the babies beg when the adult disappeared into a nearby thicket.]

[This is a picture of a Ruby-throated Hummingbird. It was aggressively hassling an adult Red-tailed Hawk along Ridge Road in High Point State Park, NJ.]

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