Thursday, June 07, 2007

Bird on a Wire

My photo today is an Eastern Kingbird, a bird of grasslands, not a forest. Here at Roundtop, the "grasslands" are the ski slopes, which apparently are suitable enough for the kingbirds. In some years, I've only seen a single pair but this year multiple pairs are around. Perhaps they are birds who were fledged here, perhaps not. In any event, this species is plentiful this year.

And speaking of plentiful species: as much as I think Chipping Sparrows are cute little things, I'd really like to see more variety in the sparrows around the mountain. If I see 500 sparrows here in summer, 499 of them will be chipping sparrows and one will be a song sparrow. Even cute wears a bit thin after a while.

I've been hearing a Yellow-billed cuckoo in the mornings when I walk Dog. The bird hasn't been all that close--certainly not close enough to try and locate it. They are uncommon to rare around here, and I rarely get to see one. From what I've read, in years past they were once more common locally than they are today. Today, they are somewhat more common to my north. I've seen or heard them frequently in the lower Adirondacks, but in this area, anyway, they are considered a declining species. Habitat loss is one of the reasons. And lately, whenever a once common species is still common to the north of me, I always wonder if planet warming is another cause.

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