Summer in Spring

Although we’re still officially in spring for a while yet, today was the first day that felt more like summer. Temperatures got up into the mid-60s with clear skies. Even the sea breeze was not enough to make it feel chilly. The effect was enhanced with all the plants already fully leafed out.

I got a report of Pectoral Sandpipers at Swan Lake this morning, and since I had yet to be confident in seeing one this year (there was flyover that I think was a Pectoral Sandpiper a couple of days ago), I decided to take a break from the work I was doing and head down there. I saw 10 of them, and spent some time sitting on the lawn enjoying the sun and taking pictures as they foraged on the lawn at the peninsula. Just before I left, I saw a few downy ducklings swimming alongside their mother. Those are the first young I’ve seen this year (though I have seen other birds gathering food).

Connor was down at the park this morning and reported seeing a Lesser Yellowlegs. I seem to keep missing those, but wasn’t able to get down to the river mouth until this afternoon. On the walk down Rowan showed me a tree she had noticed that had grown around some line that someone had tied around it. The tree was doing its best to overcome the constriction, and I’m curious if it is possible for them to rejoin so the sap can run up and down and the tree can continue to grow. She also showed me a nest she noticed on her walk this morning. It appeared to be an old nest – perhaps used last year, though it was still very much intact.

At the river mouth I did not find a Lesser Yellowlegs, but there were at least 40 Pectoral Sandpipers, a flock of 15-20 dowitchers (which I think may have been mostly/all Long-billed Dowitchers), Dunlin, Western, Least, and Semipalmated Sandpipers, as well as a couple of Semipalmated Plovers.

This evening there was ultimate up at Kreuger Field. I was interested to see a few noseeums out already. Fortunately they weren’t too bad, but it seems like usually they show up later in the season.

Tree Swallows are working on a nest in one of the nest boxes Connor hung on the deck. A couple of times today they gave me a little extra attention when I was out checking on plants.

(pictures to come)

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