I had been looking forward to today since a frigid day in January, when a friend from work planted the seed of the idea; let’s go birding in Central Park in May for migration. It may sound odd, but the birding in the middle of Manhattan is superb. The outing grew to 5 of us. We had been carefully monitoring the ListServs for weeks. Deb works in the City and had checked out the park on several occasions. Both she and Pam used to live in the City and knew the park well. We were ready.
I drove into the City with one friend to meet the others and spend the day doing what we love best. As we walked toward the Diana Ross playground clutching our Starbucks coffees, Di said, “I hear a Parula.” We froze, scanning the trees. This is why we had come–to see warblers. And see warblers we did. This weekend there happened by chance to be a fallout. There were warblers in almost every tree. We birded the Ramble, the Gill, the Grassy Knoll, and the trees along Central Park West from 81st-70th. The birds were mostly in the oaks, plucking tiny green worms from the catkins. In the end we saw 50 species of birds with 13 warblers. Our full list is below.
Magnolia Warbler, Common Yellowthroat, Blue-winged Warbler, Redstart, Nashville Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Black and White Warbler, Northern Parula, Black-throated Green Warbler, Prairie Warbler, Eastern Towhee, Barn Swallow, Rough-winged Swallow, Ovenbird, Northern Waterthrush, Palm Warbler, Hooded Warbler, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Black-capped Chickadee, Blue-headed Vireo, Baltimore Oriole, Northern Cardinal, Sharp-shinned Hawk, Ring-billed Gull, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Yellow-shafted Flicker, Hermit Thrush, Catbird, Veery, Wood Thrush, Rusty Blackbird, House Wren, Brown Thrasher, Broad-winged hawk, Red-tailed Hawk (Pale Male), Grackle, Double-crested Cormorant, Mallard, Goldfinch, Cedar Waxwing, Robin, White-breasted Nuthatch, Canada Goose, Chipping Sparrow, Swamp Sparrow, White-throated Sparrow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Solitary Sandpiper.