At 7:30 AM this morning, met up with Naturalist Dave Spier in the parking lot of Montezuma Audubon Center (MAC).
Dave and I went inside the center to await any late arrivals. Looking east through the foyer windows, Dave focused the lobby bird scope on a Red-tailed Hawk, which evidently perches out there every morning.
These birds where photographed by Dave in December 2009
Peering out the French doors in the MAC conference room, we observed a variety of birds at the feeders. Jays, chickadees, downy woodpeckers (male & female), tree sparrows, mourning doves as well as a few starlings.
Since no one else appeared Dave and I headed out for a short walk through the woods. Dave pointed out a berry patch in the open field and a cluster of golden rod that the winter birds were using as cover. Dave also had me observe a gall.
Upon entering the wood a rabbit popped up just to the right of the trail. Dave took the opportunity to take a few photos. Dave then showed me a berry stem that the rabbits had gnawed. Amazing how the creature is able to chew around the thorns.
Further into the wood Dave identified the call of a Red-bellied Woodpecker. It was quite a distance away and difficult to lock in with our binoculars.
Continuing on the path after passing the observation deck we came to my favorite tree, the massive wolf tree.
Completing our walk we were greeted by two DEC workers who were shoveling out around the MAC.
While the bird count was meager the walk with Dave sharing his insights was most pleasant. Before returning home had breakfast at the Country House Restaurant.