Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Inwood Hill Park
It has been a few months since I last visited Inwood and was curious to see how it had fared Sandy's wrath. Just as I entered the Park on Dyckman, there was a large eagle over the West Side Highway. It wheeled above me with two ringed billed gulls in tow. It continued on South over the West Side Highway. Shortly, another adult bald eagle whizzed past. I wondered if this was why there were no geese anywhere to be found. In fact, there was absolutely no bird song or any sightings at all except an adult RTH fly by. After almost 1 hour of walking through the Park, I heard a yellow shafted flicker and his chirruping call. As I sought it out in the upper story of a dead tree, the adult RTH dove in with reckless abandon, but missed the woodpecker. I could hear the scritching noise of its talons raking into bark. It was a cool scene but had my camera away then. As for Storm damage, the Park was moderately affected with sick large trees coming down and taking neighboring healthy ones with them. One interesting difference than in other Parks was that the trees fell Southwest-ward. I cant account for why this is the opposite North-easterly direction the trees fell in places like Central Park or Croton Point. I pondered this as I left the Park. Crossing by the mudflats, I saw some birds scatter. There was just time to catch this juvenile Cooper's hawking through. As it sallied on towards the Boathouse, I noticed that distinctive "churrr" of a Kingfisher. By the Ranger station this Belted Kingfisher was making its displeasure with the hawk known. Finally at Broadway Bridge, some 2000 starlings were coming home to roost. And waiting for them was you know who.