Montrose Point, April 9, 2017

Got up to 70 degrees today. Overcast; windy at times.

Today we took an early afternoon trip to the hedge. Met two experienced birders who mentioned they are in the Chicago Ornithological Society. They showed us where a red bat (presuming it is an Eastern Red Bat) was perched, sleeping. (It was on the west side of the hedge about half-way up.) Bright colored bat! Like a robin’s breast. And, we saw another bat. This one was on our apartment building. It was probably there, on the outside, because we recently had our roof entirely replaced.

Today was a really nice birding day too. We saw:

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Yellow-rumped Warbler
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Winter Wren
Eastern Phoebe
Eastern Towhee
Brown Thrasher
Brown Creeper
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (several, including an immature)
Northern Cardinal
Hermit Thrushes (a lot)
Swamp Sparrow (a first for me and my wife)
Fox Sparrows
Song Sparrows
Dark-eyed Junco
Northern Flickers (Yellow-shafted)
American Robins
Red-winged Blackbirds
Common Grackles
European Starlings
House Sparrows

Dark-eyed Junco
Dark-eyed Junco
Swamp Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
Fox Sparrow
Fox Sparrow
Eastern Red Bat
The Eastern Red Bat was sleeping in the hedge. Thanks to the other birders for pointing this out and ID-ing it.
Small Brown Bat
I am guess this is a Small Brown Bat on the outside of our building. (Photo: my wife.)

Montrose Point, 2016 March 14 (Pi Day)

1:55-3:00pm
Conditions: 48°, light breeze, fog.

Canada Goose 5
Mallard 17
Ring-billed Gull 15
Black-capped Chickadee 5
American Robin 6
European Starling 6
American Tree Sparrow 2
Dark-eyed Junco 1
Northern Cardinal 6
Red-winged Blackbird 40
Common Grackle 100
House Sparrow 50

Dark-eyed Junco
Dark-eyed Junco in motion.
American Tree Sparrow and Dark-eyed Junco
American Tree Sparrow and Dark-eyed Junco
American Tree Sparrow
American Tree Sparrow
Female Northern Cardinal
Female Northern Cardinal
Female Northern Cardinal
Female Northern Cardinal
Common Grackle with sparrows, blackbirds, starlings
The Grackles were out in large numbers. Someone left some food and the sparrows, red-winged blackbirds, and starlings were all interested.
Common Grackles bathing
Common Grackles bathing in a puddle at the edge of a road.

Montrose Point, April 11

These first two photos are of some sparrow or sparrow-like birds that I could not identify.  After looking around in the small Sibley Field Guide and online I still was not sure.  There were groups of them, usually two to six.  Black beak and legs.  Hint of pink… House Finch?

My wife and I had heard reports of Kestrels around Montrose Point for several weeks now.  Today was the first time I saw it (wife was taking Thrasher pictures).  It was being chased by a single blackbird.  On the way home we spotted one flying very high over the harbor and toward Irving Park.

Please help! What are these?

Edit: Mystery solved. These are female Red-winged Blackbirds.  (Not even on my short list.)  Thanks to the IBET group members who helped ID.

20150411-mistery-sparrow
What is this?? it is a female Red-winged Blackbird.
20150411-mistery-sparrow2
Mystery Sparrow or Finch (or?). Edit: the female R-w Blackbird.
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Brown Thrasher
Brown Thrasher
Brown Thrasher
Brown Thrasher
Dark-eyed Junco
Dark-eyed Junco
Horned Grebe
Horned Grebe
Horned Grebe
Horned Grebe
American Coot
American Coot

Conditions: 72°, clear, no wind, 3:30-5:20pm
Northern Flicker (3 at least)
Brown Thrasher (2 at least)
American Kestrel
Ring-billed Gulls
Horned Grebe (5+)
American Coot (10+)
Mallards
Red-breasted Mergansers
Canadian Geese
Cardinals
Grackles
Red-winged Blackbirds
Purple Martins (?)
Sparrows
Unknown Sparrow (or Finch? or Larkspur? Help!)

Montrose Point, April 1

20150401-Dark-eyed-Junco
Dark-eyed Junco.
20150401-Golden-Crowned-Kinglet
Golden-crowned Kinglet.
20150401-Golden-Crowned-Kinglet2
Another view of a Golden-crowned Kinglet. There were two in the tree.
20150401-red-breasted-merganser2
Red-breasted Mergansers.

20150401-red-breasted-merganser

First time out with our new camera – a Nikon Coolpix P600.

Conditions: warm, clear, 5:00-6:15pm
Ring-billed gulls (lots – people were feeding them)
Mallards (10+)
Canadian Geese
Red-breasted Mergansers (10+)
Greater Scaup (90%, may have been others in there too, far away)
Song Sparrows (70% – many)
Golden-crowned Kinglet (2)
Dark-eyed Junco (1)
Cardinal
American Crow (2)
R-w Blackbirds (mostly just heard, saw one)
Robins
Starlings
Grackles