Birding in the Blue Ridge Mountains


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American-Bald-Eagle

If you fancy yourself a Birder, one of the most prolific bird watching locations in all of North America is just about anywhere in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Spring brings out the best. Nest building, hatchlings chirping at 3am, and birds settling in for the season. They have come from all over the continent. Bring your best binoculars, maybe a camera, good shoes and a quiet voice to capture the hosts of the forest as they greet you with their color and song.

Whether you consider yourself a Twitcher, and have a list of birds that you want to check off, or you just love being in the woods with the little critters, it’s all here. It’s as if an entire shift occurs in the months of March through May as nature acts on kitchener moving companies behalf, bringing in new neighbors from far away lands to enjoy the inviting landscapes.

The Ridge offers extensive viewing of herons, mockingbirds, red-tailed hawks as well as the distinguished bald eagle. The brilliant blue sky on a warm day, is a flawless backdrop for Gray Catbirds, and the Northern Parula. You can’t venture out without hearing the Mourning Doves with their haunting coo throughout the cooler parts of the morning and early evening. The Eastern Meadowlark has the shrill chirping melody that somehow soothes the soul, while the Indigo Bunting, Scarlet Tanager, Blackpoll Warbler all have their own unique offering.

Red Winged BlackbirdOne of my favorites is the Red-Winged Blackbird. The melodic twilling and signaling language of this bird takes me back to my childhood home. With a large, wetland meadow to the East of our house, every year it would fill with hundreds of Red-Winged Blackbirds. They became my daily companions throughout the warm weather months.

It’s always wonderful to see the first sign of Spring appear in the form of the American Robin. Although ubiquitous, it still gets its rightful amount of attention as the messenger announcing the last snow. The Brown-headed Cowbird is a bird – in my opinion, only a mother could love. While not of striking color it is known for its rabble rousing ways by robbing the nests of the sparrows and other small songbirds. I realize that this is just Nature’s way, and the Cowbird may be your favorite, so forgive me if I don’t share the same enthusiasm. To each their own since there are so, so many birds to watch it would be impossible to be disappointed.

A few of the more common, but still enchanting of the species, are directly out your front door to greet the day.  Look for the Swift, the Acadian, the Barn Swallow and Louisiana Waterthrush to be nearby.

Since we are celebrating the advent of Spring, naturally I wanted to give top billing to the new arrivals, but as the months drift toward cooler weather you’ll still be able to enjoy several of the birds mentioned above. You can also include the Magnolia Warbler, Osprey, American Kestrel, Broad-winged Hawks and the American Bald Eagle. The Bald Eagle gets a double mention in this article because it is an awesome sight to behold. Other Raptors that leave a Birder in awe of their mastery are the Red Shoulder and Red Tail Hawk, the Goshawk or even a Golden Eagle on a migration layover.

Because Mother Nature has given us a variety of birds too long to list in this post. You’ll have to come out to Humpback Hallow and see for yourself.  Are the birds singing your song?

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