The first day of winter brought a Long-eared Owl to Central Park. A wonderful bird that flew out for the evening around 5:15.
After years of research and lobbying, NYC Audubon, along with a consortium of partners has gotten Initiative 1482B, the Bird Safe Glass Bill passed and sent off to the mayor, who is expected to sign the bill into law. NYC Audubon's press release is here.
I'm so proud of the staff, board and members of NYC Audubon. This has been years in the making and included the extensive documentation of bird fatalities by scores of volunteers of Project Safe Flight who created the D-bird database. The hard work has paid off.
For about a week a Red-headed Woodpecker has been reported in Central Park. I finally got a chance to see it on Saturday. Like most of the Red-headed Woodpeckers we get in Manhattan, it is an immature bird, without a red head. It has selected a stand of oak trees west of ball field number 2 in the North Meadow and east of light W9802. (If you don't know the "secret code" of the park street lights, this decodes as W=West Drive, 98=98th Street, 02=the second street light in the block.)
Red-headed Woodpeckers excavate cavities and then store nuts in them. If this one behaves like ones we've had in previous years, it should be fun to watch this activity through the winter.
I caught up with Pale Male on Wednesday on one of his favorite window railings at 73rd Street and Fifth Avenue. The days have gotten short and soon he and Octavia will be working on the nest for next season. Last year, there were no reports of anyone seeing Pale Male and Octavia copulate and the eggs didn't hatch. Let's hope for a more productive 2020.