Wednesday, March 20, 2002

Birds of the Neighborhood (March 11-20, 2002)

I live in an older house situated on a small city block in a downtown neighborhood in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia. The “neighborhood” consists of a 9-block rectangular area (my block plus the surrounding 8 city blocks), but most of my observations are of birds seen in, or viewed from, my yard. The following list of 12 species isn’t particularly impressive, but I suspect that it is probably fairly typical of what you would expect to see in many older, small-town urban residential areas in the Mid-Atlantic States (asterisks indicate species not native to the area):

American Robin - recently arrived and singing
Blue Jay - a pair hanging around
Common Grackle - a few spring migrants visiting feeders
European Starling* - tens
Fish Crow - a few hanging around
House Finch* - tens
House Sparrow* - hundreds roosting in front yard
Mourning Dove - 1 or 2 pairs in yard
Northern Cardinal - several resident pairs
Red-bellied Woodpecker - 1 on the 16th & 18th (rare in the neighborhood)
Rock Dove* - 10s-100s (has become a real scourge)
Turkey Vulture - 1 overhead on the 18th (not often seen in the city)

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