Birding at Washington Crossing Park

On March 24th, I spent the evening in Washington Crossing Park along the Delaware River in Pennsylvania. I was there from 4:40 pm to 6:48 pm. It was a beautiful day, sunny, calm, and around 50 degrees Fahrenheit. This park has a great diversity of habitat. I started off in a sparsely wooded area along the Delaware River. Then I moved toward field edge habitat, followed by marshland and lake habitat. I observed 31 species, most notably a Red-headed Woodpecker which was being reported from that location.
Another interesting bird that I got to see, and one that I love to see no matter how many times I already have, was the Brown Creeper. One of the reasons I love seeing Brown Creepers is because of how cryptic they are. I first heard the bird and had a very difficult time locating it from just that. Its very high-pitched call made me question over and over again which exact direction the sound was coming from. Then, when I finally got a glimpse of the bird, it still did a great job of hiding. Their cryptic coloration is some of the best camouflage I have seen. The various browns on their back make them blend seamlessly into a tree trunk. However, cryptic coloration is not the only plumage type that can provide good camouflage.
I also observed a few Dark-eyed Juncos feeding along the dark, paved roads going through the park. Their countershading plumage is a perfect example of energy efficient camouflage. The entire top half of these birds are a dark slate color which, on certain surfaces, provides great camouflage. However, the belly of these birds is white. This saves energy because they don’t have to make pigments for these feathers. A final plumage type that can provide defense against predators is disruptive coloration.
The Red-headed Woodpecker that I was lucky enough to see that day was a great example of disruptive coloration. This bird can be broken into just a few major blocks of color: a completely red head, a white belly, and a majorly black back with a large white patch in each wing. While this won’t directly camouflage the bird into its surroundings, it breaks up the general outline of a bird, so it may be more difficult for a potential predator to identify as food.
Another species that I was happy to observe was a large group of Yellow-rumped Warblers. While a few individuals will winter over in PA, this group was likely a migratory flock on its journey to breeding grounds. They had started their pre-alternate molt and were singing their full songs rather than their typical call note which can be used to pick them out in the winter. Since the whole migratory process is very taxing on birds, these Yellow-rumped Warblers were constantly foraging and pausing occasionally to sing. Since I was so excited to see warblers (almost) in breeding plumage, I pished for a little bit to see if I could get a closer look. I think most of the individuals were too preoccupied with their feeding to care about my pishing, but a few came down briefly to see what was going on. I imagine that this sound is so enticing for small birds because it somewhat imitates an alarm call. Since many small birds are preyed upon by tactics of surprise, identifying the location of potential predators helps their survival. So, they may come in to see why the noise is being made.

Anotado por phil_stoll phil_stoll, marzo 26, jueves 02:03

Observaciones

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Carpintero de Pechera Común Colaptes auratus

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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No hay fotos o sonidos

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Chara Azul Cyanocitta cristata

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Square

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Carpintero de Cabeza Roja Melanerpes erythrocephalus

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

Descripción

Rare observation for the area. This bird was being reported previously from the location. I was lucky enough to get good, long looks at it.

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Zopilote Aura Cathartes aura

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Carbonero de Carolina Poecile carolinensis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Carpintero de Vientre Rojo Melanerpes carolinus

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Carpintero Moteado Sphyrapicus varius

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Chipe Rabadilla Amarilla Setophaga coronata

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

Descripción

Large flock that I assume was a breeding flock moving up to breeding territory

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Mirlo Primavera Turdus migratorius

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Trepadorcito Americano Certhia americana

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Carbonero Copetón Baeolophus bicolor

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Bajapalos Pecho Blanco Sitta carolinensis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Cardenal Rojo Cardinalis cardinalis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Tordo Cabeza Café Molothrus ater

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Aguililla Cola Roja Buteo jamaicensis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Papamoscas Fibí Sayornis phoebe

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Tordo Sargento Agelaius phoeniceus

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Junco Ojos Negros Junco hyemalis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Azulejo Garganta Canela Sialia sialis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Pinzón Mexicano Haemorhous mexicanus

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Huilota Común Zenaida macroura

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Gorrión Cantor Melospiza melodia

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Pato de Collar Anas platyrhynchos

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Estornino Pinto Europeo Sturnus vulgaris

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Cuervo Pescador Corvus ossifragus

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

Descripción

Distinguished from American Crow by the very nasally "caw caw"

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Cuervo Norteamericano Corvus brachyrhynchos

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Gorrión Garganta Blanca Zonotrichia albicollis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Ganso Canadiense Mayor Branta canadensis

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Garza Morena Ardea herodias

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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Gavilán de Cooper Accipiter cooperii

Autor

phil_stoll

Fecha

Marzo 24, 2020

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