Sunday, March 13, 2016

Golden-cheeked Warblers Are Back

We took a walk on the Cactus Trail at Warbler Vista in the Balcones Canyonlands NWR this morning to look for our two Central Texas endangered species, the Golden-cheeked Warbler. Initially, I heard a half-dozen Black-and-white Warblers. Danielle saw one clearly but I never did. We final heard a couple of Golden-cheeked Warblers overhead in the budding Red Oak trees. Though I caught a quick naked eye glimpse, Danielle did not see it. Yay, they are back! In addition to these special birds, we found a few Titmice, Ruby-crowned Kinglets and Ladderback Woodpeckers. We also saw two Western Scrub-Jays which surprised me.

After lunch we went to try the Travis Audubon Baker Sanctuary. This is a members-only tract of land. It was a scenic walk with an nice babbling stream at the end of the loop. Perhaps it was because it was mid-afternoon but there was no bird life other than a Titmouse and a lone Orange-crowned Warbler. No pictures taken today; the camera and tripod were merely annoying ballast.

Update March 20 - Back to the Balcones Canyonlands NWR this morning. Once again a half-dozen Black-and-white Warblers along the trail. Still the best place I have been to see this species. There were more Golden-cheeked Warblers this time. I heard six or more and we saw three. Actually, all three were in the same tree which was somewhat surprising. Perhaps they have not staked out separate territories?

This time we managed to get some pictures of both the Black-and-white and Golden-cheeked Warblers. We also met Carlos Ross, one of the active birders from Austin.

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