From Donna Kuhn:
We had great weather for our June trip, temperatures in the 60s to low 70s and mostly sunny with a light breeze. We ran into a light fog as we left Columbus.
Clear Creek Metro Park is a great place to look for breeding warblers. It is in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains and has many beautiful rock formations. As we pulled over for our first stop, we spotted an American Woodcock on the trail to the river. We watched it use its long bill to probe the mud for insects. Red-eyed Vireos, American Restarts and Northern Flickers were seen in the trees above us. We took a short walk down the Hemlock trail where we were able to see and hear a couple of Worm-eating Warblers. The mud and the bugs made it easier to move on. The fog was lifting by the time we reached the Barnaby Picnic Area. Three Brown Thrashers were calling from trees in the parking lot. An Olive-sided Flycatcher was perched in a dead tree nearby.
Crown City is a reclaimed strip mining area known for grassland birds. Prairie Warblers were one of our most common birds. We also saw a number of Chats. We saw a Henslow’s Sparrow perched and singing on an Olive Bush. Northern Bobwhite were calling persistently in the late afternoon. They would stop calling whenever we got close and several times we heard alarm calls, leading us to suspect nests with young, so we left them alone. A Grasshopper Sparrow watched us from the brush. It had a bug in its mouth that it did not consume, perhaps intending it for a mate or young.
After returning to Columbus, a few of the more avid Avids headed to Heritage Preserve. A Great Egret and Great Blue Heron were near the water. We finished the day with a Blue Grosbeak as the light was fading. Total of 82 species for the day:
Great Blue Heron
Northern Rough-winged Swallow