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Wooded Island Bird Walk Report

Submitted by Jennie Strable on Mon, 09/26/2016 - 5:37pm

Event date:

Saturday, September 17, 2016 - 8:00am 



Hello to All,

It was another good day for fall migration. Although the number for each species was much lower than in years gone by, the number of species was fair.

For some unknown reason Red-breasted Nuthatches have decided to migrate along the lakefront and in the northern Illinois area in general.  In recent years past, we were happy to see a few.  They and their cousin, White-breasted Nuthatches are a delight to see.

There was one very tired juvenile Red-tailed Hawk that perched on a snag on Wooded Island. After harassment by crows for a while, the crows actually gave up and left the hawk alone. Migration is fatiguing.

A special sighting was a flock of nine Northern “Yellow-shafted”Flickers.  The golden yellow under their wings and tails were very noticeable and caught the morning sun.  This is the largest single flock I have seen.

Later in the afternoon, Karin C., Karin D. and I saw the Brant resting in the north basin of Lake George in Hammond, Indiana.  The location is at Calumet Ave and 122nd Street. Parking and a paved path offered easy access.  I have seen this species along the Delmarva Peninsula on the east coast, where it is a common species. It is a Rare Bird for our area.

BIRDERS:      9. (1) Caroline H., (2) Marian N., (3) Mark W., (4) Eric G., (5) Tobias G., (6) Tracy W., (7) Karin C., (8) Karin D. (9) Pat D.

TIME:             8:00 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

PLACES:        Bobolink Meadow and East Lagoon

WEATHER:    Initial cloudiness gave way to sunshine. Temperature 69 to 76 F., Wind WSW 5 to 10 mph, Humidity 96%, Dew Point 68 degrees.

TOTAL SPECIES COUNT:  44 + 2 other taxa

X = commonly seen and/or not counted.

  1. Canada Goose  37     flow overs - two flocks

  2. Wood Duck  22     Looked like three families together on logs along the east side of Wooded Island. Count by Mark W.

  3. Mallard  17     Total in North and East Lagoons. Count by Mark W.

  4. Double-crested Cormorant  2

  5. Great Blue Heron  6

  6. Black-crowned Night-Heron  4

  7. Cooper's Hawk  1

  8. Red-tailed Hawk  1

  9. Ring-billed Gull  6     fly overs

  10. 10.  Chimney Swift  100Airborne. Activity and count picked up by mid-morning.

  11. Ruby-throated Hummingbird  2

  12. Belted Kingfisher  2

  13. Red-bellied Woodpecker  1

  14. Downy Woodpecker  2

  15. Hairy Woodpecker  1

  16. 16.  Northern Flicker  9  Families together in migration. Perched together.

  17. Peregrine Falcon  1seen flying from Wooded Island towards Vista Homes on Stony Island Avenue.

  18. 18.  Monk Parakeet  6

  19. Eastern Wood-Pewee  2

  20. Empidonax sp.  1

  21. Eastern Phoebe  1

  22. Eastern Kingbird  1

  23. American Crow  15

  24. Black-capped Chickadee  6

  25. 25.  Red-breasted Nuthatch  4

  26. White-breasted Nuthatch  5

  27. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  2

  28. American Robin  4

  29. thrush sp.  2

  30. Gray Catbird  3

  31. European Starling  2

  32. Tennessee Warbler  3

  33. Nashville Warbler  1

  34. American Redstart  2

  35. Cape May Warbler  3

  36. Magnolia Warbler  1

  37. Bay-breasted Warbler  1

  38. Chestnut-sided Warbler  2

  39. Blackpoll Warbler  12

  40. Palm Warbler  12

  41. Yellow-rumped Warbler  3

  42. Black-throated Green Warbler  2

  43. Wilson's Warbler  1

  44. Song Sparrow  1

  45. Northern Cardinal  3

  46. American Goldfinch  4


This is a group report, with many birders contributing to the list. Most of the birds were seen by at least several or all of the birders. Mark Webster shared his list for creating this report.

Corrections, additions and comments are welcome.

Recordings are not used to attract birds.

This report will be recorded on eBird as a group report for the Wooded Island Bird Walks.

The Walks are free and open to one and all. They are held year round.Newcomers are warmly welcomed. 

Darrow Bridge: Darrow Bridge has been barricaded by the Department of Transportation. No one can cross. A high black metal iron fence has been erected on all four sides. It appears that the fence will remain in place until Darrow Bridge is completely rebuilt, which could be several years away. The Bridge has been deemed unsafe.

The Walks start at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday.

Birders meet in the southwest corner of the East Parking Lot. Wooded Island is closed off by a fence while work in being done. Birders walk through Bobolink Meadow and view the eastside of Wooded Island and the East Lagoon.

Please note: The Wednesday morning Walks have been decommissioned. An informal group often meets, but the start time varies and the distance traveled can be curtailed.

Metered parking is available in the East Parking Lot that is accessible from South Lake Shore Drive at 57th Street (labeled Science Drive on a small blue street sign). There is a Stop Light at 57th Street. Make a turn at the Stop Light towards the Museum. Turn Left (south) at the intersection of Science Drive and Columbia Drive. Go through the parking lot to the west end.

Parking and Lots: While restoration is ongoing, heavy equipment has taken over half of the east parking lot, off of South Lake Shore Drive, and half of the southwest parking lot which has an entrance off of Hayes Drive (63rd St.) and just east of Cornell Drive. Birders will be able to find metered parking in both lots. The East Parking Lot is preferred. There is also unmetered parking along Stony Island Avenue from 56th to 59th Street.

Best of Birding to All,                    

Patricia Durkin

Earlier Event: September 10
Wooded Island Bird Walk Report
Later Event: September 24
Wooded Island Bird Walk Report