Henslow's Sparrow - photo by Scott Ellis

Henslow's Sparrow - photo by Scott Ellis

Ten birders met for the COS field trip to Plum Grove. Kudos to Phil D, who came all the way from Rockford to join us.  Weather was pleasant and the wind kept most mosquitos away. We first birded the west side of Burnham Ave for field birds. We walked the perimeter of the wide field to minimize nest disturbance. Dickcissels were most numerous and I am sure we saw over 12. One obliged us with views at 20 feet kicking his head back as he sang.

Field sparrows bounced their songs throughout our walk. I feel we saw/heard at least 7 Henslow Sparrows. One finally popped up at 40 feet and "Tsi-Licked" long enough to even take a few photos. A White-Eyed Vireo flew close to us at about 20 feet and sang incessantly but would not show us his face. Somehow we missed the Bobolinks in the large dip at the back of the field. They may have been quiet due to nesting. Other shrub land birds such as Willow Flycatcher, Brown Thrasher and Catbird roundedout our prairie walk. We next went to Plum Grove Meadow whose entrance is on the east side of Burnham Ave. Before we started our woodland walk, we saw a male Eastern Bluebird, Yellow Warbler and male adult and first year male Orchard Orioles. Naturally an Eastern Kingbird was spotted next to the Orchard Oriole. Does anyone know how a Kingbird benefits by his association with Orchard Orioles?

The woodland walk was somewhat quiet as we started it almost 10am. We did hear Tufted Titmouse, Carolina Wren, many House Wrens, Yellow Throated Vireo, Indigo Buntings and a singing Wood Thrush but missed the Acadian Flycatcher.  All in all we saw or heard 45 species.