Every autumn, a group of volunteers scan the skies for migrating hawks, eagles and vultures at High Park. The park also has a few year-round resident Red-tailed Hawks and we saw one today on this 11 degree sunny morning.
Species list: mallard, wood duck, red-tailed hawk, ring-billed gull, northern flicker, hairy woodpecker, downy woodpecker, eastern phoebe, blue jay, American crow, black-capped chickadee, white-breasted nuthatch, red-breasted nuthatch, American robin, ruby-crowned kinglet, house sparrow, northern cardinal, American goldfinch, white-crowned sparrow, song sparrow. (20 species)
After the Boston Tea Party in 1773, the British no longer shipped Chinese tea to their American colonies. Colonists found that the leaves from a shrub named “Redroot” produced an acceptable tea. Eventually this tea caught on and the plant’s name became New jersey Tea. The High Park Black Oak Savanna is a perfect habitat for this plant.
This morning’s group:
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies – John Keats (1795–1821)