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Golden Triangle Audubon Bird Alert -- 22 April 2012


Date: Sun, 22 Apr 2012
Subject: Sabine Woods Sunday
Sunday at Sabine Woods was very similar to Saturday. The Tropical Mockingbird was easily seen by most or all in the same areas as yesterday, the open areas on the south-east side of the woods. The Black-whiskered Vireo was seen several times by numerous people but is the tougher of the two birds to "get". It is still favoring the southern fence line west of the entrance but disappears for long intervals. Otherwise, things were pretty slow. Like yesterday, the diversity of warblers seen was quite high and some nice species were recorded (Prairie, Blackburnian, Blackpoll, Cerulean, etc) but numbers of individuals was low and finding any one bird was tough. A few possible new birds were seen on the day including Warbling and Philadelphia Vireos and Chuck-will's-widow but it appears that there were practically no ariving birds yesterday or today by the time I left the woods (~4pm). The Western Kingbird was still hanging around and there were still Tanagers, Thrushes, Cedar Waxwings and Buntings.
John Whittle spotted a Black-billed Cuckoo in the early morning at Texas Point NWR just east of Sabine Woods but the bird was not refound later. There were singing Seaside Sparrows and a single Nelson's Sparrow on Pilot Station Road along with some Whimbrels and other shorebirds but few passerines other than Orchard Orioles. Hard to predict what will happen tomorrow but hopefully our birds will stick around and be joined by some more in the coming days! 
Steve Mayes
Date:   Sunday 22 Apr 2012
From: Steve Mayes
Subject: Tropical Mockingbird, etc. at Sabine Woods
As has been noted by others the Tropical Mockingbird (I think there is little doubt of the i.d. at this point) was seen throughout the day Saturday and was very cooperative.  He likes the field just east of the main entrance and is usually nearby.  He did use the smaller open area just in front of the main entrance at times and dove into the eastern section of woods to feed on lantana berries.  I think most if not all birders who came to see it got one or more looks. The Black-whiskered Vireo was a bit harder but still gave a lot of good looks to a lot of people.  It ranged over a greater area of the woods but seems to favor the southern fence line from the entrance to the western fence line.  He also appeared in the wooded area around the picnic table/kiosk. There were 20+ warbler species reported but with very few individuals of each (often just one) and I doubt anyone saw all of them.  Highlights among them included Cerulean, Blackburnian and Prairie.  There was a report of a possible Townsend's Warbler late in the day but I never found the bird.  Tanagers were easily found and there were the usual bunting species here and there.  Not too surprisingly a Green-tailed Towhee was seen late in the day by a few birders.  A late Eastern Phoebe at the pond was a surprise.  Outside of the rarities though the woods were pretty slow.
Steve Mayes
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