Brambling – Medina County, Ohio

On December 30th, Katie Barnes and I set out to twitch two ABA rarities, Kelp Gull and Brambling, before trying to get her additional year birds. More on the Kelp Gull later. We arrived at Allardale Park in Medina County, Ohio to find 30 or so birders staking out the feeder station for the Brambling. We waited, waited, and waited some more. The bird finally showed itself in the top of a Sweetgum after an hour of waiting, but only gave brief looks before flying off. While we waited for it to return, we enjoyed excellent views of Mourning Dove, House Finch, American Tree Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, and a variety of other birds visiting the feeders.

Finches at Allardale Park, Medina County, OH on December 30, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60x85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Finches at Allardale Park, Medina County, OH on December 30, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60×85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

After a short, cold wait, the Brambling returned to the feeder station, but this time stuck around for a couple of minutes, giving the crowd the desired look and providing a decent photo opportunity. It was well worth the wait! Here are two of my best digiscoped shots of the bird.

Brambling at Allardale Park, Medina County, Ohio on December 30, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60x85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Brambling at Allardale Park, Medina County, Ohio on December 30, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60×85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Brambling at Allardale Park, Medina County, Ohio on December 30, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60x85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Brambling at Allardale Park, Medina County, Ohio on December 30, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60×85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Observing this bird without ticking anyone off is somewhat of a challenge, so here’s a map of where to park (red pin), where to stand (yellow pin), and the feeder station the bird visits (blue pin). Click on each pin for more information.

Let me know if you have any info to add to the map. I hope this helps clear up some confusion about seeing the bird as there have been many posts to the Ohio Birds listserv about it.

Wordless Wednesday – December 30, 2015

Eastern Bluebird - Grove City, PA - Tim Schreckengost - IMG_4324

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Indiana, PA CBC – December 26, 2015

I participated in the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count the day after Christmas. Weather was a bit unusual this year, with temperatures hovering around 50 and a chance of rain. In past years, it’s been cold, snowy, and miserable. I had a small section that I was somewhat familiar with, so it didn’t take me long to “beat” it. Hunters were out in full-force, so I didn’t do much walking on roads and kept to “road birding” and walking around small, public parks.

I spent four hours counting and drove 36.7 miles and walked only one mile. I tallied 30 species (complete list below), with Field Sparrow and Northern Flicker as highlights. They were also unique additions to the count total as a whole, which is up to 70 species. Here are a few of my favorite shots from the count.

Black-capped Chickadee during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Black-capped Chickadee during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Field Sparrow during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60x85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Field Sparrow during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60×85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

American Tree Sparrow during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60x85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

American Tree Sparrow during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Digiscoped with a iPhone 6 Plus + Vortex Optics Razor HD 20-60×85 & Phone Skope Adapter. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Creekside Baseball Fields during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Creekside Baseball Fields during the Indiana, PA Christmas Bird Count on December 26, 2015. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Canada Goose
Red-tailed Hawk
Mourning Dove
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Pileated Woodpecker
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
White-breasted Nuthatch
Brown Creeper
Carolina Wren
Golden-crowned Kinglet
Eastern Bluebird
American Robin
Northern Mockingbird
European Starling
American Tree Sparrow
Field Sparrow
Dark-eyed Junco
White-crowned Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
House Finch
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow

This trip summary was created using the eBird app for iPhone and iPad.
See eBird for more information.

Christmas Bird Counts in the News!

Here’s a fantastic news segment on the Christmas Bird Count from Bozeman, Montana. It’s always a delight to see birds and birders in the news!

I tried embedding the clip, but that broke, so here’s a link to the online news article with the video.¬†http://www.ktvq.com/story/30800791/annual-christmas-bird-count-in-bozeman

New Article: Migratory Birds Descend on Peru

Remember all of those Franklin’s Gulls that showed up in the eastern United States last month? Well, where did they end up? Check out this article from GlobalVoices showcasing thousands of Franklin’s Gulls stopping over in Peru during migration.

Franklin's Gull at Veolia WTP in Wilmington, Delaware on November 14, 2015. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Franklin’s Gull at Veolia WTP in Wilmington, Delaware on November 14, 2015. Photo by Tim Schreckengost.

Wordless Wednesday – December 23, 2015

Bellevue State Park - Tim Schreckengost - 22880559625_e19f3c9afc_k

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Video: Imperial Woodpecker from Cornell Lab of Ornithology

I just came across this video series showing the only footage of a living Imperial Woodpecker from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. It’s definitely worth a couple minutes of your time.