Fall Migration at it's Peak

   If you have read my previous article, then you will remember what a great bird watching trip I had last year on October 7th. However, this year, as you will also remember, the day was wet an cold, leaving me inside typing my last article. However, I did find out what day the birds moved through in a great sweep of mignlged bird species this year. October 17th. 10 days later than I had expected. I should have guessed, though, because last year all of the leaves were off by this time, and this year in southern Ohio, the leaves are just hitting their peak color change.

   So just how did I find out what day they all came through this year? It happened in this way...


   I quickly made on last check of my gear: Face mask, gloves for later on, cell phone and crossbow. I had everything. I swung the door shut and hurried back the trail. Upon reaching the stand, I hung my crossbow onto the gear rope and clipped my safety belt onto the guide rope, then began my ascent to the top. Once reaching the top, I unclipped my belt, set up my chair, pulled on my face mask, and pulled my crossbow to the top. I took little notice of my surroundings until I had seated myself and prepared the seemingly long wait until dusk.

   Soon after I sat down, however, I noticed what I had been to preoccupied to notice up until that moment: Warblers. They were everywhere. The trees were swimming with them. Mostly yellow-rumped's (the most common type in Ohio), perhaps about 50. I also saw what appeared to be a Tennessee Warbler, and I also saw nuthatchs, titmice, chickadees, a Brown Creeper, Downy Woodpeckers, Red-Bellied Woodpeckers, Pileated Woodpeckers, a Red-Tailed Hawk, White-Throated Sparrows, and the telltale sign of winter: Dark-Eyed Juncos.

   Unfortunately, unlike last year, I was stuck in the tree stand, not down there in the thick of it watching them (I almost wished I was). And incase you are wondering, I didn't get a deer that night (but a doe and her fawn stopped by).

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