Monday, March 7, 2011

Winter #23: City Birding

March 7
6:15-6:45am, South Orange, New Jersey
misty, overcast

This morning I multi-tasked: listening for my bird while wheeling my luggage and self down to the train station.

It wasn't much of an expedition, but I did catch a chickadee along the way, doing that hey sweetie call.

Unfortunately, I was too slow to the draw with the recorder; here is the residue of what was going on behind the chickadee:

Keeping the recorder on the ready was no use at the train station, despite a couple of trees that seemed promising; the most prominent non-human sound was that of a plastic bag rustling in the wind. This is actually a recurring theme in the last few days (Philly, New York, and now New Jersey)!

I had the chance to appreciate something I had also noticed on my early AM trip out of Boston. Actually there are lots of other people up, out and about at dawn, but most of them are glumly getting themselves to work in some kind of noisy, busy, urban gritty environment. I'm lucky lucky to be spending most of my dawns with nature!

March 6
6:10am-6:45am, City College and environs, Harlem, NY
drizzly grey, windy, cool

Ah, the Sunday calm. Fun to take in the Harlem's alter-ego on this drizzly early Sunday morning.

A couple of "only on a Sunday" moments:
- Two cardinals calling across a small side street at one another, rather low-pitched, their voices resounding off the pavement and smooth buildings. No traffic to compete with!
- A seagull diving low across Amsterdam Ave, below the traffic lights, well within bus-crashing range had there been any out
- A hawk perched imperiously on a tree branch in St. Nicholas park. Ok, this is not particularly Sunday moment, but I always get a kick out of seeing hawks in very urban areas.

It was too windy to get a good recording today.


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