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Bluebird Trail Report 6/8/2020

Today was hot and muggy on the Flatwoods Park Bluebird Trail, but we still have a good report. We have a total of 105 fledglings (94 BB, 7 CC, 4 TM), with 18 chicks and 31 eggs, all bluebird. See attached spreadsheet for details. Also attached are pictures of bluebird chicks in boxes F30 and F36, and bluebird eggs in box F39. During rainy weather parents have to leave the nest for longer periods to hunt for food. I always worry that small chicks in the nest, with few or no feathers, can succumb to hypothermia. This may be what happened to chicks in box F17, but since it's the second brood we've lost this season in that box, it may be another reason. So I am also going to relocate that box to a different location.

Because of Tropical Storm Cristobal, there was water everywhere today, even running across Clay Gully (picture attached), but the water birds were loving it! I saw great blue, little blue, and tri-colored herons, white ibis, great egret, osprey, wood ducks, and black-bellied whistling ducks (picture attached). Other birds seen were great-crested flycatchers, ruby-throated hummingbirds in the native garden, ground doves, and a pileated woodpecker (picture attached).

Some plants really come alive when it rains and I captured a picture of an oak tree covered in resurrection ferns (Pleopeltis polypodioides var. michauxiana), and a string lily or swamp lily (Crinum Americana) that thrives in wet areas. Lastly is a picture of a Gray Hairstreak butterfly feeding on a Phoebanthus (Phoebanthus grandiflora).

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