Thursday, December 12, 2013

Brown-headed Nuthatch, Black-throated Green Warbler, and Blue-headed Vireo

[Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. November 2013]

In the second late-November post from Corkscrew, a different mix of species will be profiled:
  • Brown-headed Nuthatch
  • Black-throated Green Warbler
  • Blue-headed Vireo
  • Eastern Phoebe
  • Great Crested Flycatcher
  • Yellow-crowned Night Heron
  • Black-crowned Night Heron
  • White Ibis
First, the nuthatch:

Brown-headed Nuthatch

Sharing the honors of the world's smallest nuthatch with the Pygmy Nuthatch, the Brown-headed is restricted to the Southeast US.


Although a small number of Brown-headed nuthatches are also found on the Bahamas, this subspecies is a candidate for a future split in which case the US population will get elevated to endemic status.


In addition to the irresistible nuthatch, a late migrant -- the Black-throated Green Warbler -- was also spotted in a mixed feeding flock :

Black-throated Green Warbler

Moving from warblers to vireos, a small yellowish bird is seen perched up in a tree, going about its feeding routine in a calm and collected fashion. The grey head and white spectacles both point to its identification as the Blue-headed Vireo.

Blue-headed Vireo

This vireo ranges in the Eastern US; breeding in the North and overwintering in Florida as well as Central America.


On the flycatcher front, we have Eastern Phoebe and Great-crested Flycatcher:


Great Crested Flycatcher

Fairly common at Corkscrew, Great Crested Flycatchers can be heard calling in the mornings as they hunt for insects in dramatic swoops; the result of which, in the case depicted below, is a large dragonfly for breakfast.


Now moving on to larger birdlife from the tiny songbirds profiled thus far -- Corkscrew boasts many species of Florida herons and this morning is no exception, the highlight of which are both species of night herons:


A Yellow-crowned grooming itself, and ...



...a Black-crowned Night Heron perches in a statuesque pose; much like a nearby White Ibis which is taking a rest from feeding energetically on the damp floor earlier.


But birds alone do not enthrall at the Swamp -- other denizens  -- representatives of the amphibian, insect and mammalian persuasion also abound:
American Green Tree Frog

American Green Tree Frog

Queen Butterfly

Racoon

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