It was a beautiful, cool, September morning, when both Olney and Juniata Park residents joined TTF bird expert, Keith Russell of the Audubon Society, for a bird walk in Tacony Creek Park.
We started at a new meeting location, seting off from the park’s trail north of Roosevelt Blvd. According to Keith, now is the perfect time for birdwatching. Why? Because Autumn is the season in which many birds migrate south for the winter, flying through Philadelphia on their way. They travel at night, navigating their way through a sensory organ in their brain. Because birds fly during many hours, it’s important for them to have a place to rest. And Tacony Creek Park is an essential resting area for their survival.
With the help of Keith Russell, we spotted a raccoon, many squirrels, and 25 bird species:
Canada Goose (20), Cooper’s Hawk (1), Rock Pigeon (2), Mourning Dove (10)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (3), Downy Woodpecker (3), Northern Flicker (2)
Red-eyed Vireo (1), Blue Jay (10), Carolina Chickadee (10), Tufted Titmouse (1)
White-breasted Nuthatch (1), Carolina Wren (3), American Robin (50), Gray Catbird (6)
European Starling (35), Black-and-white Warbler (1), American Redstart (2)
warbler sp. (10), sparrow sp. (1), Scarlet Tanager (2), Northern Cardinal (4)
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (1), Common Grackle (6), House Finch (4)
American Goldfinch (2), House Sparrow (25).
Our enthusiastic group learned many interesting facts from Keith. For example: Did you know that birds sing more in the Spring to attract mates and defend territory? Did you know that cherry trees are a host tree for many species of butterflies? Did you know that “Norway Maple” trees are a non-native, invasive species that secrete substances in the soil to eliminate other native plants? And did you know that our native insects can’t continue to exist without native plants?
Join us for our next bird walk on Saturday, December 6, 2014. Learn about the wonderful birds, plants and wildlife in Tacony Creek Park — and impress your friends!