944 Fifth Avenue Chimney Swift Roost

While watching Eastern Red Bats and Big Brown Bats on Thursday, I ran into a bird watcher studying Chimney Swifts that roost at 944 Fifth Avenue at 75th.  It turns out the best place to watch them is the "hawk bench" where "regulars" watch Pale Male's nest in the spring.

The swifts swarm around the roost and then around 6:30 into the video they start to enter the roost.  In a few minutes, they are almost all inside.  Thank goodness for pre-war buildings.

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Western Kingbird

Early on Saturday, Ben Cacace found a Swainson's Hawk on Governors Island.  While the chances of others finding it was slim, it was such a rare bird for Manhattan, lots of very good birders made a trip to the island.  As is bound to happen with so many good birders on the island, Loyan Beausoleil found a Western Kingbird about 150 feet west of Tango Pier, a life bird for me.

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Ramble Red-tailed Hawk

While this hawk was in Pale Male's territory, I don't think this hawk was Pale Male.  Pale Male has a clean white neck and his chest pattern reminds me of Oak leaves.  This hawk while having a light belly band, seemed a bit different.  The markings are more like paint drops.

No mater who it is, I'm glad to see one less rat in the Ramble.

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Lark Sparrow

Also in the northeast of Central Park was another nice sparrow this past week, in the Compost Heap, a Lark Sparrow.

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Red Phalarope

A Phalarope was found in Stuyvesant Cove Park this morning and after much discussion was identified as a Red Phalarope.  It was an amazingly cooperative bird, staying close to the shoreline.  It as a life bird for me.

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Dickcissel

For the last few days, there has been a Dickcissel up by the compost heap in Central Park, which is near the East Drive and 105th Streets.  I got lucky and was in view for a few minutes.  It harder to find later in the afternoon.

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Pale Male

Pale Male continues to hunt near the "Polish statue" in Central Park.  He might be the easiest Red-tailed Hawk to watch in New York.  He had caught a small mouse before I arrived, but was certainly keeping an eye out for his next meal, while I watched him.

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Bryant Park Sora

One of the joys of New York City birding is its great network of birders who freely share their discoveries.  Another joy is the pocket parks of Manhattan that due to light pollution end up with an interesting number of rarities.  Yesterday and today, these intersected with a Sora in Bryant Park.

It was a tough bird to find, as it kept hiding in the undercover but if you were patient, you could get some good looks at the bird.  It was in the western section of the plantings just north of lawn.  It worked east and west before climbing up into a small conifer, after dusk, and may have ended up roosting there.

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Tennessee Warbler

Fall migration has been slowly starting over the last few weeks.  Birds take some work to find at times, but there are interesting species moving through the area now.  Today, I was lucky to have a number of birders direct me to a Tennessee Warbler in Central Park's Maintenance Meadow.  It was a very cooperative bird and it gave great looks for over two hours.

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Pale Male Again

Pale Male continues to eat and hunt in the late afternoons east of the Great Lawn in Central Park.  He's not there every day, but he's there often, as he has in past years.  I caught up with him on Friday and Sunday.

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Pale Male

Pale Male was in one of his favorite late summer/fall eating spots on Saturday.  He likes a tree with a wide flat branch that makes a great picnic table in a triangle shaped lawn that is north of the Polish statue and south of the Obelisk.  He was eating a rat.  After he was done, he flew over to the Met.  He should enjoy now before the roof reopens to visitors.

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Tropical Storm, Belted Kingfisher and Catfish

Odds and ends from a quiet day in the park.  Central Park lost a number of trees and there were a lot of broken branches blocking paths after Tuesday's storm.  On Turtle Pond there was a Belted Kingfisher, a nice bird for early August.  The Gill in the Ramble had two nice sized catfish and lots of minnows.  It's amazing that such a small stream could have such good sized fish.

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Governors Island - A Week Later

I got lucky on Monday.  When I arrived at Governors Island, the Red-tailed Parents and a fledgling flew back and forth from the weathervane to the communications tower for about 45 minutes.  It looks like in early August the fledgling is being a pest.  It's time he/she starts to learn to hunt and he/she was looking for handouts.  How this develops over the next few weeks will be fun to watch.

After all of the action was over, I did catch up with one of the adults who was harvesting branches.  I think it was the male.  It looks like he's adding twigs to a different spot on the communications tower.

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Governors Island

I went out to see the Red-tailed Hawk family on Governors Island today, and got to see the parents and at least one fledgling. Folks have reported seeing two fledgling, but I haven't seen them together yet.  Hopefully, I'll see both at the same time the next time I go out to the island.

One of the parents was hanging out near Fort Jay in various trees only about 15 feet high.  It seemed unusual but might be a defense against the American Kestrels (one is in the video and the photographs below) and Fish Crows that hang out around Fort Jay.

The fledgling was all over the place, at the weathervane, on the communications tower (where the nest is located), flying around Fort Jay and even circling in the sky. 

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2020 Manhattan Red-tailed Hawk Nest Update 16

Final news is coming in about Manhattan's Red-tailed Hawk nests.  Inwood Hill is confirmed to have 2 fledglings.  Governors Island has at least one fledgling.  Randals Island has fledged three.  A fledgling has been discovered in Riverside Park near Columbia University.  And Fort Tryon must have fledglings by now.

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