Our trip to Ralph Simmons State Forest was well attended and the unique habitat produced different bird species. We observed over 30 species with the highlight being the singing Bachman’s Sparrows until 9:30 am. We were able to observe one of them that was teed up. We also had cooperative Brown-headed Nuthatches and a pair of Northern Bobwhite that startled us more than we startled them when they burst in flight next to the trail. We observed 8 species of early migrant warblers with only one of them, the Black&White, not starting with a Y or a P. The Ps were represented by Northern Parula, Pine, Prairie and Palm. The Ys were Yellow-throated, Yellow-rumped and Yellowthroat. Half of the group left early before we encountered a new challenge, flooded trails. Due to the heavy rains, the trail was flooded near the river. We were able to bypass the first flooded obstacle but were soon on an island. The second flooded area required us to wade across. The consolation was that we encountered a mix flock of warblers and vireos including a Blue-headed Vireo.
Our next trip is is with Duval Audubon Saturday April 9th at Ft. Clinch. We will meet at 8 am at the parking area for the beach. Please join even if you can’t sign up on Duval Audubon’s website. We hope to see migrating warblers including the Worm-eating Warbler.