Monday, 4 November 2013

October in Review

The most of my birding this month was in search of the seemingly elusive Black Poll Warbler “Setophaga striata” at Harrison’s Point St. Lucy. Up until the end of October this bird was nowhere to be seen.  However for the month of October, I posted five (5) birds moving my Photo Challenge count to 75 species.  I also was able to add three (3) new species to my year and life count, both of which now stand at 82 species.

The search for Blackpoll Warblers
I spent three Saturdays and some weekday afternoons in search of Blackpoll Warblers at Harrison’s Point.  The first Saturday I met with Edward Massiah, Co-author of the book Birds of Barbados, at about 6:30am. I was happy to add the Yellow –billed Cuckoo” Coccyzus americanus” to my list on that day. The Yellow Warblers were also plentiful at this location and I was able to get my best photo to date of this bird.
The 2nd Saturday we were joined on our expedition by Dr. John Webster, Host of the Local, Regional and dear I say, International, bird show Breakfast with the Birds.  I felt honored to be birding with my mentors.  There is a wealth of knowledge between the two of them, which I so often tap into. However, after about 4 to 5 hour of looking we called it quits.
The 3rd Saturday we were all hyped up. We heard of a massive Blackpoll Warbler fall out in Bermuda. I met Edward at about 6:30am to continue our hunt. I am not just a birder I am “naturer", (lookup that word in your dictionary and add it, if it is not there); hence, after realizing that this outing was going to be like the others, I switched from my long lens to the micro lens and took photographs of some of the insects around. The hunt for the Black-poll Warbler will continue but you will have to hear about that next month.

Photograph of the Month
My Photograph of the Month is of a Juvenile Peregrine Falcon "Falco peregrinus". The photograph was taken on October 31, 2013. 


Harrison’s Point
October 5th would have been the second time I had been to Harrison’s Point but the first time for Birding. Located on the Northern tip of the island, Harrison’s Point, a decommissioned American Naval Base turned make shift prison, now stands abandoned with empty dilapidated buildings, over grown  by shrubs and trees.  The Myamosee or River Tamarind tree “leucaena leucocephela” is the predominant tree in this area. This tree is known to attract many worms and caterpillars making this area a perfect place for migrating birds like Warblers. A study done by Douglas McNair, Edward Massiah and Martin Frost at Harrison’s Point involving mist netting, added a number of species to the local Avifauna and offered valuable information on the migration of Blackpoll Warblers. So this location known for its lighthouse, is also an important area for birds. Link to the studies done at Harrison’s Point.
The Lighthouse @ Harrison's Point

On Identified Moth


On To November
I entered November needing twenty-five birds. This pretty much seems like an impossible task, however, I am hoping to get at least ninety birds. I will continue the lookout for the Blackpoll Warblers and also the Godwits. The Blue-winged teals are here, and I will be looking for any vagrant among them.  I missed out on two juvenile Yellow-crowned Night Herons at WSR, but I hope that they are still around. So I am keeping my ears to the ground my eyes to the sky. So here is to another month of birding in Barbados.  

See the following post for Photograph for the Month of October.