May 22, 2013
Written by Jack Sanders
Thursday, 16 October 2008 13:22
Adrienne Saint-Pierre of Poverty Hollow Road in Redding met a Black-throated Blue Warbler the other day, about as close-up as you can get.
“The male warbler was a Sunday afternoon visitor who unfortunately met the glass in our kitchen door head on — we think he was hurrying to escape a cat, as we heard a feline yowling nearby,” Adrienne writes. “Since I had heard the bird hit the door, I was quickly able to get outside where I found him on the ground.
“I warmed him in my hands for some time, stroking him gently across his back, and he eventually came ‘back to life.’ By then he thought it was a pretty comfortable situation and was not in a hurry to leave.
“Although I was sorry for the accident, it was a great treat to see such an uncommon bird up close, the beautiful dark blue feathers and black throat. There was actually a trace of green among the blue feathers, too, perhaps a hint of fall coloring.”
Birds hitting windows is a common problem. Depending on the lighting, a window — even a relatively small one — can behave like a mirror. A bird in a hurry, such as one threatened, can mistake the window for open spaces.
With most household windows and doors, a crash like the one at Adrienne’s house happens only rarely, if ever. However, if you have windows — particularly picture windows — that birds regularly crash into, consider a product like Window Alert. These are plastic decals that are virtually invisible to humans on the inside of the house, but are very visible to birds on the outside. According to the manufacturer, “The decal contains a component which brilliantly reflects ultraviolet sunlight. This ultraviolet light is invisible to humans, but glows like a stoplight for birds.”
The product functions sort of like those advertising coatings that you see on commercial vans and city buses that cover not only the metal surfaces of the vehicle but also the windows. People inside can see out perfectly well, though from the outside the window looks like part of a sign.
The decals, which come in various shapes including leaves and snowflakes, are sold in many stores that serve bird watchers and feeders. For more information, see windowalert.com.
Bill Rossiter of Redding loves Bennett’s Pond State Park, the new 450-acre open space just off Route 7 in Ridgefield by the Danbury line, where he believes he got a nice photo of a Lincoln’s Sparrow passing through. “I hope a lot of birdwatchers are enjoying this special place now, as the pond’s edge is crammed with migrants. The Wood Duck, Canada geese and Mute Swan families are still around, and the beavers are particularly active.”
Incidentally, south on Route 7 about eight or nine miles is Allen’s Meadow in Wilton, one of the top birding spots in Fairfield County, where Connecticut Audubon will be having a bird walk Sunday, Oct. 26 (see “Coming Up” below).
Bebe McCarthy of Ridgefield reports on Oct. 8 that “both my neighbor and I still have hummingbirds feeding around our homes.”
Conservation of Birds of Open Habitats in New England with Dr. Robert Askins, Professor of Biology at Connecticut College, Western CT Bird Club, Thursday, Oct. 16, 7 p.m., Southbury Library, 100 Poverty Road, Southbury, 203-426-3901
Hook Mountain Hawk Watch, across the Hudson, includes half-mile hike, Saturday, Oct. 18, 9 to 2:30, Bring lunch, water bottle, hiking shoes, hat, and binoculars, Audubon Greenwich, 613 Riversville Road, Greenwich, Ted 203-869-5272, x230 to register.
“Falcon Fever,” special presentation by the author, Tim Gallagher — known as the person who sighted the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker, Thursday, Oct. 23, 6 p.m., Audubon Greenwich, 613 Riversville Road, Greenwich, 203-869-5272, greenwich.audubon.org
Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, trip, Saturday, Nov. 1, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Audubon Greenwich, 613 Riversville Road, Greenwich, Ted 203-869-5272, x230 to register, greenwich. audubon. org
Winter Birds and Project Feederwatch, how your family can be “citizen scientists” to help count winter birds at bird feeders in the backyard, Saturday, Nov. 8, 1:30 to 3 p.m., Audubon Greenwich, 613 Riversville Road, 203-869-5272 RSVP to store at x221, greenwich. audubon. org
Falkland Island & Patagonian Birds, penguins, albatross and more, presented by Gary Palmer and Tom Baptist, Sunday, Nov. 9, 3:30 to 5 p.m., free, sponsored by the Quaker Ridge Bird Club, at Audubon Greenwich, 613 Riversville Road, RSVP to 203-869-5272 x221 greenwich. audubon. org
Bird walks with Luke Tiller, mostly Saturdays at 8 a.m., $10 each; to register, www. sunrisebirding. com/ walks.htm; 203-981-9924, luke.tiller @ gmail.com.
First Sundays, birding at Greenwich Point with Meredith Sampson of Wild Wings, and other guides, meet at the second concession stand, 203-637-9822.
Copyright (c) 2008 by Jack Sanders. Send sightings or comments to: jackfsanders [at sign] yahoo.com, or to Bird Notes, Box 1019, Ridgefield, CT 06877; or call 203-438-1183, extension BIRD (2473), and leave a message with your report, spelling your first and last names and telling us your town. If you need help identifying a bird, try your local nature center. If you find an injured bird, call wildlife rehabilitator Darlene Wimbrow of Redding, 203-438-0618, Wildlife in Crisis of Weston, 203-544-9913, or Wild Wings of Greenwich, 203-637-9822. The columnist’s website is www. sandersbooks. com.
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