Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas in the Park

Jack and I decided to go to the park for a nice walk today.  It was cold but not unreasonably cold, cloudy but not raining or snowing, altogether a pretty neutral day, weather-wise.  I asked Jack where he wanted to go int he park, and he said, "Where the hawks are!"  I laughed and said that the the subway would probably take way too long so we headed for the pond.

Good decision!  About half way to the bridge, Jack spotted this hawk perched in a tree!  It was low, and Jack had seen it swoop in, so I'm guessing it was hunting.  It posed for us for a few minutes, and then swooped right over us, hopefully to catch a nice fat pigeon for lunch.  We didn't follow it, we kept on.

About half the pond was frozen, so the ducks were fairly concentrated, but we still didn't see the wood duck.  Just mallards.

What we did see what tufted titmice and black-capped chickadees, pretty much everywhere!  And blue jays and cardinals, and white-throated sparrows.  Here's a downy that came to flirt with us once we crossed the bridge.

And a tufted titmouse that played by the rocks across the bridge for a surprisingly long time.  Not very shy, this one!

Continuing up the park road on the way to the carousel, we ran into this beauty.  I don't know if it's the same guy as by the pond (I haven't compared the pictures although I probably could) but he was also low and swoopy and probably hunting.

Once we got up to the fountain, I saw another hawk in the trees to the left, so we went to check it out.  He was just hunkered down, way up there, and looked like he meant to stay for a while.

From there, over to the oven, where there was a lot of action, it was actually ridiculous.  Chickadees, titmouses, a nuthatch or two, even a goldfinch bathing.  Of course the light was so terrible that none of the pictures are decent, but it was still a nice experience.  :-)

Then a quick stop by the feeders where this creeper kindly posed for me.

We swung my the maintenance meadow to see if the varied thrush was holding court, but the cold drove us away before we saw it.  Oh well, maybe another day!

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