Sunday, July 6, 2008

The Creek is Sparkling Clean

I trust everyone had a fine 4th of July weekend. Here are some results from today's excursions.

My friend Josh Chapman and I set out on kayaks at the crack of dawn (or maybe it was 10AM?) for the first annual 'Clean Up the Mess on the Bay Day'. Our prize? We took home SEVEN fully-stuffed black garbage bags filled with old cans, glass, styrofoam, nets, yards and yards of cloth, Tyvek house wrap, rusty wire crab traps, and more plastic bits of junk than one could ever imagine. I hope everyone enjoys the new, much cleaner looking Severn River.

Oh, but what about the birds you ask? Here are some highlights...

TWO PURPLE MARTINS. They have recently moved into one of the two Martin gourd houses that I installed around Weems Creek in West Annapolis. The white gourds are easily visible from the Ridgely Avenue Bridge just to the North. As for the second martin house, it is located high up on a hill at my friend's home, a far too difficult location for us to reach today. We had our minds on our garbage-collecting mission. I did send my friend an email to inquire about his gourds. As of yet, I have no information on the second martin house and/or it's possible current residents. As per the usual, there were numerous Ospreys and Barn Swallows. But the best news of the day: TWO PEREGRINE FALCONS may have started a family. After some extended observation, it is highly likely that these two have a scrape and are in the process of raising chick(s). More soon.

I returned home and took a much needed shower to remove that wonderful marshy-mud smell. Decided to get back out and do some more birding... this time with less trash.

Later, I was joined by Warren and Lisa Strobel of THE BIRD COUPLE fame. We spent a few hours at Waterworks Park and vicinity in Annapolis. Blue Grosbeaks, Indigo Buntings, Northern-Rough Winged Swallows, Grasshopper Sparrows, Eastern Meadowlark, Belted Kingfisher, Ruby-Throated Hummingbird, Barn Swallows, Cedar Waxwings and Orchard Orioles were just some of the avian highlights. We also found some really interesting plants and empty eggs that will be fun to ID.

It was deja vu all over again. I returned home and took yet another shower, this time to remove the bug-repellent. And now... I'm happy enjoying some much needed relaxation.

Good Birding,


1 comment:

av_m said...

Hi Dan! - I'm in Annapolis too, near Spa Creek.

I'm thinking about entering the wide wide world of purple-martin-ing -- mainly to make still another try at cutting down on those pesky skeeters swarming my backyard.

Any suggestions for getting started? I know it's late for this season, but nonetheless, I'm looking online re: the houses, poles, etc.

Know any local purple martin birdhouse craftfolks?


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