Water Birds

On May 18th I went to the Ausable Marsh Wildlife Refuge just outside of Peru New York. The refuge is primarily a marsh land situated just off of Lake Champlain. The bulk of the refuge is located between the Ausable river and Dead Creek. The refuge then juts up against the Ausable Point Campground. The weather was very nice throughout the day. I arrived at the refuge at about 7:35 in the morning and the temperature was 50 degrees Fahrenheit with a lightly overcast sky and a 10 mph wind out of the north. As the morning progresses the sky cleared off to mostly sun and the temperature warmed up to just over 60 degrees F.

The habitat of the refuge was quite varied. There were numerous small bodies of water isolated from each other by small strips of land. The Ausable river splits at the southern end of the refuge with one part of the river emptying directly into Lake Champlain and the other snaking up north through the refuge before moving west where it enters Lake Champlain. Dead Creek, the Little Ausable River and parts of the main Ausable river provide even more water sources within the refuge. The refuge is composed of a mixture of marshland and floodplain forest. The main part of the marsh is accessible by a dike which snakes its way through the Marsh. within the marsh there is a large amount of vegetation particularly cattails, rushes and reeds. The floodplain forest which borders much of the marsh is composed predominately of deciduous species and riparian vegetation. In the campground which meets the western edge of the marsh there is a small stand of coniferous trees mostly Red Pines.

I saw a large number of Red-winged Blackbirds in the refuge approximately 45, a large number of Common Grackles and a significant number of Tree Swallows. When I first entered the marsh along the dike these three species were very active and quite vocal. I also encountered a number of species in much smaller numbers. These included a pair of Osprey, a Baltimore Oriole, an American Goldfinch and a Great Egret among others. Towards the end of my outing as I made my way back towards where I had parked I encountered three Northern Flickers. The three birds were all out on an open area of grass probing the ground. I had not encountered a Northern Flicker before and was unaware that they fed on the ground. The Flickers I observed were probing at the ground for food.

In terms of water birds that I observed I saw Great Blue Herons, Mallards, Common Mergansers, a Belted Kingfisher and several Caspian Terns and Ring-billed Gulls. The Refuge is quite large and these species were spread out over a considerable geographic extent within the marsh. The Great Blue Herons and the Great Egret were all out wading in deeper water within the marsh while I observed both species of ducks in the Little Ausable river towards the northern part of the refuge. The Belted Kingfisher was at the southern edge of the refuge and was circling over a stretch of the Ausable River.

Posted by tsshafer tsshafer, May 18, 2020 19:53

Observations

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Yellow-rumped Warbler Setophaga coronata

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Common Grackle Quiscalus quiscula

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Northern Cardinal Cardinalis cardinalis

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Blue Jay Cyanocitta cristata

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Canada Goose Branta canadensis

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Song Sparrow Melospiza melodia

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Baltimore Oriole Icterus galbula

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Common Yellowthroat Geothlypis trichas

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

American Goldfinch Spinus tristis

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Osprey Pandion haliaetus

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Mallard Anas platyrhynchos

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Goosander Mergus merganser

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Spotted Sandpiper Actitis macularius

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Tree Swallow Tachycineta bicolor

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Warbling Vireo Vireo gilvus

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Downy Woodpecker Dryobates pubescens

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

American Robin Turdus migratorius

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Eastern Bluebird Sialia sialis

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Belted Kingfisher Megaceryle alcyon

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Double-crested Cormorant Phalacrocorax auritus

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Great Egret Ardea alba

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Song Sparrow Melospiza melodia

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Northern Flicker Colaptes auratus

Observer

tsshafer

Date

May 18, 2020

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