A Fox and a Wren

I thought I would take a break from posting on the local endangered species and recap the past weekend.

Since I knew I would be birding all day Sunday on the Johnson County CBC I only went out Saturday afternoon for a couple of hours.  Mainly to walk.

A Fox

Birding was slow at Franklin Township Community Park but I had a rare encounter with a RED FOX. When I arrived in late afternoon it was lying in the grass out to the east. I watched it stand up, lie down, check me out, lie down again, and finally trot away. No telling how long it had been out in the open. It was wary but not overly so.  It was good to watch an animal I hardly encounter.

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The Red Fox was low in the grass when I first arrived. As seen in the next photo I think it was eyeing a treat. Franklin Township Community Park 12/19/15
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I enlarged and cropped this photo but still couldn’t tell what was hanging from the fox’s mouth. A snack?

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A Wren

As usual Jules and I covered the SE section of the Johnson County CBC.  We had little problem calling in EASTERN SCREECH OWLS or hearing the calls of GREAT HORNED OWL. But BARRED OWL was missed by all groups. Either the species is getting rarer in this area or I’m just not timing it right. I will put some emphasis on it for next year.

Otherwise waterfowl was basically non-existent. But the lack of cold that drive waterfowl south meant that other species were still hanging around. The total for the complete count was about average with 59 species. Jules and I totaled 41 species which is about average for our part of the circle.

Highlights for us were a PIED-BILLED GREBE, migrating SANDHILL CRANES, lingering WILSON SNIPE, the above mentioned owls, YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER, and several BROWN CREEPERS. We had a lone BROWN-HEADED HORSEBIRDCOWBIRD, a tough bird to find locally in winter.  The bird was following a horse continually around its pin.  A funny thing to watch.

But the highlight was a singing WINTER WREN.  We still hadn’t heard a CAROLINA WREN when I heard a bird trilling.  I told Jules there is our Carolina but when it trilled again I knew it was a Winter Wren.  It didn’t take long before the little brown blob came into view and then continued to flit about and sing.  We watched it for several minutes as I attempted to take a photo in the poor light.

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The best photo of the Winter Wren I could muster in the poor light. It even sat out in the open singing for several minutes. Irwin Park 12/20/15

It eventually flew away and we continued on.  It then started singing from a different spot and gave good views.  And I’m almost sure there was a second one calling down the river. But not 100%.

This was Jules first and only the second Winter Wren I have seen in Indiana, so it was a special treat.

 

 

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