TAS walk at AD Barnes Park 4/8/2023

Approximately 35 birders swarmed to AD Barnes Park for a walk to find spring migrants. Due to the size of the group, we had to split into 2 groups. I led the first, and Luis Gonzalez led the second. This report pertains only my group.

Unfortunately, the weather was beautiful. That may sound strange, but in spring in southeast Florida good weather does not bode well for a huge list of migrants! Our group ended up with only 2 species of warbler – several American Redstarts, and a heard (by a few) Prairie Warbler. Birding was overall fairly slow. A White-crowned Pigeon flew overhead as we were gathering, as did a flock of Cedar Waxwings, and a part of that flock was also seen later in the morning. A few Purple Martins were overhead, and a small flock of red-masked Parakeets was flying about noisily. A likely Peregrine Falcon was glimpsed by a lucky few who happened to catch a glimpse as it sped away from us. The pond area yielded a single Gray Catbird, plus Common Gallinule, Tricolored Heron, Egyptian Goose and the ubiquitous Muscovy Ducks.

As slow as it was, birding never disappoints. While we were out in the open, a textbook perfect Broad-winged Hawk was soaring towards us, wheeling in circles. Suddenly, like a bolt of lightning, a female Cooper’s Hawk came right at the Broad-winged, and they tussled and fought as the Cooper’s drove it away to the south! Later, we found another young Cooper’s Hawk in the pinelands at the Nature Center, which sat cooperatively for everyone to see.

Our group finished the morning about 10:15 with 30 species total. A copy of the full group eBird report (both groups) was/will be sent to all participants. My group eBird report can be found at https://ebird.org/checklist/S133050911