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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

June 27, 2010 3-4 pm Cloudy & humid Pleasant Valley Audubon, Lenox MA

A handsome Common Yellowthroat greeted us as we stepped out into the parking lot of the beautiful and wildlife-full Pleasant Valley Audubon (this was the last day of our vacation and the most enjoyable).

Three overly friendly Goldfinches dashed gracefully over head twittering madly on their iPhones. Birds sang from all sides. A Catbird meowed angrily from a bush while a dark wraith of a bird soared quietly overhead - it was the garbage man of the bird world, a Turkey Vulture (later we saw another one glide past on its two-toned wings).

Three Black-Capped Chickadees chattered noisily from a pine tree. A red-Eyed Vireo darted through the canopy. Tree Swallows flitted through a small meadow. Soon we came upon a small marshy pond which was connected to some other ponds of the same architecture. Right across from where we were standing a mountain loomed peacefully in front of us (generally rocky mountains are menacing and tree covered ones are peaceful). Robins moved through the mud and weeds of the marshy pond while two Cedar Waxwings zipped by. And it was not just their flight that was zippy - their call is a short and buzzy "ziiiiiip-ziiiiiip-ziiiiiip" - they were REALLY zippy birds.

An Eastern Phoebe stood resolute on a branch waiting for a fly (the buzziest dish in the world) to fly (as its name suggests) by it's branch. Occasionally we would find a Veery moving through its woodland domain. A smart looking White-Breasted Nuthatch clambered smoothly down a tree trunk while what we think were Common Ravens croaked occasionally in the distance.

A beaver slid smoothly to its lodge in the middle of one of the ponds - it was very close to its dam which presumably created the pond. Our trek looped back to the meadow where we saw the swallows (in fact the swallows were still there) but now they were joined by a female Wild Turkey - it stared at us for a little while before it walked off.

We found a Chipping Sparrow feeding in the grass at the entrance. There were also a few Chipmunks throughout the walk.

Our vacation was over. We got into the car drove home.

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