Posts Tagged 'Bush Terminal Park'

American Wigeon

Male.
Female.

Choate says wigeon is from the French vigeon, for a whistling duck. Possibly from the Latin vipeo for small crane.

Raptor Wednesday

One of the local feral cats was passing by below.

Cooper’s hawk at Bush Terminal. I’d say a male because it wasn’t so big. (Females are substantially larger.)
***

It all seems so tenuous sometimes. Here is awful news on the American Kestrel front. The Montreal population is in free-fall, mirroring downward trends across North America, and nobody knows why.

The hell we don’t. The answer is in the mirror.

Kingfisher!




A male Belted Kingfisher patrolling the bays at Bush Terminal. Yesterday I saw one in Green-Wood. I wonder if this is the same bird moving between fresh and salt water? The Green-Wood bird, which I’ve seen twice now, is very vocal, calling between flights and while rattling away while perched.

N.B. All the strings and plastic in the pictures above are attempts to keep Canada Geese from eating the Spartina.

Goldeneye

We surprised each other. I think this Common Goldeneye had just come up from a dive when I reached the end of the pier. It shot off. I shot off a few pictures.
The eyes are really something, aren’t they? Even from some distance, they jump out as gold on the black and white face.

The Morning Sun

Saturday dawned at 49F, the coldest day since some time back in the early spring. A small huddle of Palm Warblers were exploring Bush Terminal Park with me.
A couple of hours later, I spotted this White-crowned Sparrow in Green-Wood.
Earlier, when I entered G-W around 9:30, it was still cool but the sun was out. There wasn’t much insect activity yet: I saw a few flies and heard a cricket. So this was noticable: these Eastern Yellowjackets were already up and about, streaming in and out of their ground nest under a funeral monument. Good morning back at ya, ladies!

Great Egret

Ardea alba have even been known to show up in small backyard goldfish ponds. If there’s food… and they do seem readily habituated to the presence of similarly long-legged hominids.One of the bird’s long plumes, or aigrettes. These are breeding plumage feathers; this one about 18″ long. They’re the reason these birds were nearly hunted to extinction, so these plumes could be stuck in ladies’ hats. This one was on the ground, so I kicked it into the water to dis-incentivize anyone from sticking into their hat. (Possession of such a feather would be illegal, but hardly anyone knows this.) Here’s another in the spartina at Bush Terminal Park.

Great Egrets nest in the smaller islands of the NYC archipelago.

 

PSA: How to Debate A Science Denier (from Scientific American.)

Cottonwood Air

There was so much Eastern Cotton fluff, it was easy to scoop up a handful off the ground. A single mature Populus deltoides can produce an estimated 40 million seeds in a season. The seed is inside the dried fruit or achene attached to cotton-like filaments that help transport it through the air.Here’s my attempt to photograph the stuff in the air at Bush Terminal Park recently. Cottonwood time is a virtual snow storm.And looking the other way: a thicket of the fast-growing saplings beyond the fence.

More Spring

Red maple flowers. Eastern Phoebe.These are wind pollinated trees, so early spring emergence isn’t predicated on insects.An early arriving migrant, this bird is dependent on insects.Speaking of which, beetles and flies are emerging.A millipede in a leafy liverwort. Interesting similarity of shape…And here’s a frog-sex teaser. There’s some amplexus in the water…

Winter Killdeer

Rocks, Ring-billed Gulls, and hey, a Killdeer! (You can’t see the rats inside the rocks, but when they scurry around in broad daylight, you know the tubular rodents are all over; suckers have always loved waterfronts.)

Bush Terminal Park had breeding Killdeer last year.

Dawn Corvids

One morning recently, a great parliament of crows flew over the apartment heading towards the bay. I estimated fifty at least. They boiled around the air column over the empty parking lot of the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal, before turning right to head northish along the coast of Brooklyn. They must have been roosting inland. They didn’t make any noise that I heard, so I couldn’t tell if they were American or Fish. (American or Fish should be a game.) Both species are found here year around.

A few days later, I saw at least twenty crows flying over Bush Terminal Park. These were vocalizing, and so identifying themselves as Fish Crows. They were relatively low, too, so I snapped a picture or two.

(Yes, the proper collective noun for a group of crows is murder or congress, but collective nouns are more wordy historical fun than anything else, so why not bend the rules?)


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