Saturday quickly became a beautiful morning, with a slight coolness to the air. When we first got going it was 50 degrees.
Anthony Gray was a knocking on the door at abour 10 minutes to 8 this morning. After a quick stop at a gas and go, we headed north towards the Cumberland River. We headed out on the "new" Old Hartsville Pike. I wonder if the coolness of the morning kept the Rough-wing Swallow from venturing out of their nest.
We take a feft onto Ford Road and drive it all the way to the Cedar Creek Baptist Church on Beasleys Bend Road. This area sometimes is a hot spot for birds, especially with the open pasture land to the west. All we have to do is stop, look and listen. There was a cedar tree with a small hole in it and some small bird going in and out.
We headed out to the end of Beasleys Bend which terminates over in Trousdale County. This large parcel of land was sold a couple of years ago. We figured that it would be subdivided and a house on every corner, but the new owner has kept it for agricultural purpose with a crop of soybeans planted. If it were mine, there would be a special plot with millet and sunflowers planted. I can dream.
Returning back to the C C B Church, we checked out the hole in the cedar tree once more. We finally got to see the small bird and it was a House Sparrow, or Weaver Finch. This sparrows presence has probably taken away the chance that a Carolina Chickadee might have nested there.
Overhead we saw a Great Blue Heron headed toward the direction of the river. One lonely Wild Turkey was feeding next to Ford Road. We went by too fast to determine if if were male or female. Other birds found there was Bluejays and a long winded Mockingbird.
Leaving that area, we head toward the Blown Out Bridge on South Dickerson Road where we spot a beautiful Baltimore Oriole. It flies into the sun light and looks like it is on fire, where the color explodes before our very eyes. Red-winged Blackbirds are singing "gurgilee," in the area of cat tails next to the road.
Pulling up next to the Blown Out Bridge, we first see a Great Blue Heron trying his hand at fishing. Over to the right, across the small slew, we hear the "witchity witchity witchity" of the Common Yellowthroat. These birds have finally made it this far north and will be here all summer lomg. Another Baltimore Oriole is singing here, but he is keeping close to cover.
Tree Swallows are flying out over the surface of the lake catching their breakfast. After we got home, me and Anthony checked my nesting Tree Swallows. I couldn't see too good, but Anthony said the mama was sitting on the eggs, so we left her alone.
Other birds we saw or heard next to the bridge were Tufted Titmouse and Indigo Bunting. One other beautiful bird we heard was the Prothonotary Warbler. This bird makes her nest in tree cavities or other holes found. Years ago, I saw one that was nesting inside a pipe where the General Jackson docks.
We drive over to Orian Lane that goes over to the Hunters Point boat ramp. Several boats and helpers were there for the 2nd annual "Ducky Derby" where numbered ducks are dropped off of the river bridge and good prize money is paid to the 1st, 2nd, 3rd place ducks that cross the finish line. Even the last one over gets a prize.
Close to the boat ramp, we found a pair of Ospreys looking for their fish breakfast. A Common Loon was swimming across the other side of the river. One Snow Goose looking bird was paired off with a solid white goose of some king. My peanut butter cracker was a little stale, so I shared it with the larger of the two. It gently took the cracker from my fingers.
Driving out Canoe Branch Road we found a pair of Eastern Kingbirds. These birds are fearless, even going as far as chasing Hawks away that get too close to their nest or babies. Eastern Blubirds were in abundance here also a plethora of Purple Martins were wheeling and soaring overhead.
Out to the end of Canoe Branch Road, we come to the facility that I have always called the "Game Farm." Off to our right, Anthony with my electronic ears could hear the song of the Bob White Quail. Other birds found there were the American Goldfinch and Eastern Meadowlarks. Field Sparrows, along with Red-winged Blackbirds are singing in the tangled weeds down by the waters edge.
We take a short cut on Burford road over to Belotes Ferry Road where we find Red-bellied Woodpeckers and Tufted Titmouse. We can never catch a brake because of the traffic. Someone always gets right on our bumper, especially when we want to stop to get a look. I believe we could be in a hay field and someone would still be on our rear bumper.
Driving up Cedar Grove Road, we hear an Eastern "Rufous-sided" Towhee singing his trade mark song, "Drink your tea." A Great Crested Flycatcher is singing up above in the tree tops along with a fussing Carolina Wren.
Over to the Tyree's Access, a pair of Red-tailed Hawks are circling above in the bright blue skies. We also find Great-blue Herons and Common Loons around the place.
Our last stop for the morning is a small road called Cooks Road Extention. We give it a quick listen to and we hear a Red-eyed Vireo singing up in the tops of the trees. We also hear a Solitary Vireo, not too far from where the Red eyed is singing. Time to head back to town for our Snow White hamburger fix and to shoot our weekly video.
You can write me at 606 Fairview Ave., Lebanon, TN, 37087, or e-mail me at email@example.com