Sunday, May 3, 2015

Spring Birds and Butterflies

We had another beautiful, warm and mostly sunny day today, which was great for getting outdoors.  I had some nice spring migrants and good luck with a new butterfly too!

I started the day at Westborough Wildlife Management Area, where I hiked for two hours and fought off "warbler neck" as I watched birds in the highest trees for most of that walk.  My neck does not like spring warblers, even though my brain and heart do.

Yellow Warbler

 mystery Blue-Winged Warbler
(thanks to Josh F. for sending me the ID!)

Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher

 Palm Warbler

 need more time on this one, too
Warbling Vireo
(again, thanks to Josh F. for sending me the ID!)

 Yellow-Rumped Warbler

 Spring Azure on some dog poo
not quite as pretty as on a flower...

During the second hour of my hike, the termperature really warmed up, and I ended up seeing 18 of these Spring Azures and one Mourning Cloak.

 Snapping Turtle

 closeup (but not too close)

 Eastern Kingbird

 American Redstart

 Yellow-Rumped Warbler
showing the spot for which it is named

Palm Warbler (looking for a bug up there)

Late morning I checked out the Sherborn Power Line Trail and found it to be totally quiet.  I did have a fly by Clouded Sulphur, my first sulphur of the year.  Besides that, I only photographed one bird and saw no other butterflies in the woods or on the trail.

Field Sparrow

Wood Anemone

Disappointed with the lack of butterflies, I decided to try Arlington's Great Meadows and see if I could find my first elfin there.  I had gone to an MBC field trip there several years ago, and we struck out.  Then, I returned on my own one or two times and struck out on my own too.  This time I did find one and I think it's a Henry's Elfin.  I saw more Spring Azures here, too, but not in the numbers I had in Westboro.  There were also Palm and Yellow-Rumped Warblers here.

Henry's Elfin


  1. I've got some thoughts on your mystery birds...
    1. Blue-winged Warbler
    2. Warbling Vireo
    Happy May!

    1. Yay! Thanks, Josh! These are a match! I knew I would remember the song of the first one, so that made it easy to match up with your idea! I should have known the 2nd one, having seen it before. It's like starting over ever year!

    2. Every year we get to remember what we've previously known and hopefully add additional layers to our awareness... one step back, two steps forward... or something like that...

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