Thursday, March 5, 2009


About four years ago American Bald Eagles began to build their nest near where I now live. Idid not live here at the time. But those who did, mainly Father Gene got a call from someone who works for the Audubon Society . They could see the eagles building the nest. Since then Audubon has tagged the nest and some of the eaglets born there. (The year before the tagger just missed tagging one of the eaglets as they flew from the nest.) Unfortunately one of the things they did was to leave a chain up near the nest which would help the skilled Audubon expert get close enough to grab and band the eaglets. However last year it probably was that very metal chain that attracted the lighting bolt which destroyed the nest. But, thanks be to God American Eagles are very tenacious. And so they are in the process of rebuilding the nest, if they haven't done so yet. I said "OUR" eagles. Well, of course they are not "ours". They BELONG TO US ALL. I have seen at least one of them flying above our roof last week. Two men that had come to make a Matt Talbot spotted them as they were getting their luggage out of their trunk.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


One of the real happy moments here at The Mount is this month of February when the Red-Winged Blackbirds return. Their "call" and their unmusical song, ---Con-Con-Coreeeeee!! is pretty easy to recognize. The Tufted Timouse's "Peter, Peter, Peter" is also is a no brainer to recognize. The same is true for the ever present Black-Capped Chickadees and the White-Breasted Nuthatches with their plaintive "Ank, Ank, Ank!" We have at least one Piliated Woodpecker and their call is pretty easy to recognize as is the broken or off-key guitar call of the Red-Bellied Woodpecker. I usually to to the net occasionally to sites that have birdsong. The Cornell site that is over to the right in my Birding Favorite Links will have pretty much all the North American birds. You can google the name of pretty much any bird and the net is more than likely going to take you to a site where you will both hear it and sometimes see it graphically represented. I have heard that sometimes the only way that experts can come to a positive ID of two birds that sing "sort of" similarly is to graph it. If you read Marie Winne's book Central Park After Dark which I enjoyed immensely, you will see that sound graphs (or whatever they are called) are often the only way to distinguish the sound of certain bats. I will give you hear an interesting link to NORTH AMERICAN BIRDSONGS. It is

Monday, March 2, 2009


Even the jays are taking a rest today! And if there are saw whet owls, short eared or long eared ones one in our inviting connifers they are saving their diving and predating skills till the winds die down. (Is there someone "out there" who knows if an owls vision is impaired by swirling snow flakes??). If we get at least another foot of snow out will come my closeted snowshoes. Maybe those white-winged crossbills that have been seen in such abundance in Central Park will be back up here, if indeed they ever passed through Esopus. By the way if any of you know any birders in the Kingston, Esopus, West Park, Ulster Park, Highland or Pougkeepsie, Wappingers Falls area, let me know. Other than Rusty Johnson who is a licensed falconer, does eco tours in the Amazon and is the recognized "Hawk and Bird Man" here in Esopus . (His wife Jessica works with us at The Mount). I haven't connected with many of the local birders. Let me know if you know someone that would like to bird in this area with this HUDSON RIVER "LONE" BIRDER.