That said, the Tiadaghton Audubon Society held its regular Saturday morning bird walk at Hills Creek State Park today. With members absent to go to a birding festival in Erie and to band shore birds in Delaware, only Gary and I showed up to lead the walk--which started at 8 AM with just Gary and me. Two campers staying at the park did join us shortly after we started but we had to end the walk early when the rain returned.
I recorded 15 species in the HQ parking lot between 7 and 8 AM and another dozen or so in our brief walk around the beach area.
Great Blue Heron
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
There may have been other waterfowl on the lake near the northern end but they were too distant for a good ID. Some looked to be Double-crested Cormorants. And we didn't get into the best warbler zones on our brief walk and none of the little buggers bothered to come to visit us.
On the way home, I spotted 4 or more Wood Duck on a small beaver pond along Shaw road but didn't stop to look for more. Then I saw a Ruffed Grouse cross the road and meander into the woods. Not the brightest of birds, grouse depend upon camouflage and surprise to make good their escape. (Anyone who has unexpectedly had a grouse explode from cover at their feet will tell you how heart-stopping the experience can be!) This particular bird went for the camo.