Rockfish Valley Trail 9/26/12

All photos are Marshall Faintich

I met up with Walt Childs near the first wooden bridge off of route 627 at 8:30 this morning. Three Charlottesville birders - Janet Paisley, Stauffer Miller, and another birder - had just arrived, and the five of us birded together down the east side of Reids Creek. They had already seen Nashville and Blackpoll Warblers that I did not see this morning. I saw three more warbler species on this side of Reids Creek: Magnolia, Palm, and Common Yellowthroat. When we reached the second wooden bridge, the Charlottesville birders headed back on the east side, and Walt and I crossed over to the west side of the creek for a while before going back on the east side to the first wooden bridge. Walt then headed for home, and I did some more birding around the bog area that was filled with birds, and added a Tennessee Warbler plus four other species to bring the morning total to 37 species including 6 warbler species. I saw two new birds to add to the trail's September 2012 total species count: Chimney Swift and Dark-eyed Junco.

Tennessee Warbler

Magnolia Warbler

Magnolia Warbler

Magnolia Warbler

Magnolia Warbler

Palm Warbler

Rose-breasted Grosbeak hanging out with Bluebirds

Rose-breasted Grosbeak hanging out with Bluebirds

Indigo Bunting

Downy Woodpecker

A distant Broad-winged Hawk

A close-up flyover by a juvenile Cooper's Hawk

Carolina Wren

Scarlet Tanager

Least Flycatcher

Swainson's Thrush

Walt and I saw a bird that really stumped us at first. It looked to be about the size of a Cuckoo, but neither of recognized its facial pattern. Can you identify this bird?

Mystery bird

Mystery bird

After reviewing the photos on my camera screen, I noticed a yellow tip to its tail. It was a juvenile Cedar Waxwing molting into adult plumage - but the largest Cedar Waxwing either of us had ever seen.

Cedar Waxwing

Adult Cedar Waxwing

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