February 17, 2024

Salmon Hole Trail
Cloudy, light wind, no precipitation, 21 degrees F
River bed side, tall trees. buildings and roads along the river.

I hiked out on the salmon hole trail, it was later then I wanted to go out, but it was still a beautiful afternoon. It was very cold, and I did not expect to see many birds, but I hoped the ones I did see would be performing winter behaviors. i sighted several Black capped chickadees on my way in, and they were darting around one large oak moving very fast.

on the walk through I saw 26 dead snags from the trail, many were of off in the brush, several pockmarked with woodpecker holes, but three notable ones next to or lying across the trail. One was completely hollow, and when I poked my head in one side I could see a squirrel huddling up in there. Another lay completely across the trail and was not completely hollowed out, but had several dug holes in the side, I believe it was a den of some sort for several species and I did not want to disturb them. The final notable snag was an upright stub around 3 feet high and when i lightly kicked it two more squirrels scurried out of it.

snags are incredibly important particuarly to wildlife in the winter as the dead bark provides shelter and dens for animals to live out the could weather. Bugs will live in the bark occasionally providing food for animals willing to dig for it, and the natural hollows caused hide small creatures like squirrels from dangerous predators. Many birds, like chickadees, and other small song birds will use the dead trunks for winter nesting.

The main event was when I reached the open bank of the river to hear the sound of hundreds of crows performing their nightly flyovers like some sort of omen. The crows were looking for somewhere to roost, as together they can stay warmer then alone as well as safer. The crows call patterns were very interesting to listen to, as they would have the standard throaty call through a flock, then one bird farther off would call out in a shorter higher pitch, and the others would respond with a similar noise and all converge on the caller, like it was calling them in to a good tree. I tried to get a recording of it, but the audio on my phone is really bad and there was too much static. At around 6:00 pm when the sun was really starting to disappear, the crows were slowing down in their ominous flyovers, and settling in the trees, with a few stragglers still looking for safe places to roost for the night. I wish I had brought my binoculars, because I would like to see if there is any pattern to how they roost and pick spaces in trees.

הועלה ב-פברואר 24, 2024 04:44 לפנה"צ על ידי mothman42 mothman42






פברואר 17, 2024 05:21 אחה"צ EST


I watched the crow nesting migrations


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ירגזי שחור כיפה (Poecile atricapillus)




פברואר 17, 2024 04:56 אחה"צ EST


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