Sweet Auburn: The Magazine of the Friends of Mount Auburn An Oasis for Birds and Birders | Page 7

A Celebration of Mount Auburn’s Birding Community Meet our Birders! “Birding in Mount Auburn in May is like going to an annual garden party where the guests are the birds in migration dressed in fes- tive colors, often singing out to announce their presence as they circulate among the trees and around the ponds. We are the reporters covering the daily events with binoculars and notebook in hand. Each day we seek out the anticipated ar- rivals, greeting each one by name. Throughout the month when we spot an unexpected guest, we try to share the sighting with the other birders: ‘in which tree?’ ‘how high up?,’ then a burst of applause as the target bird takes a bow in the sunshine. The party isn’t over until we’ve seen the Mourning Warbler, usually the last arrival at the end of May, when most of the other guests have already departed for their nesting areas further north.” — Sue Denison Red-bellied Woodpecker by Rich Turk “I travel up and down the east coast from Machias, Me., to Miami, Fla., in search of birds to photograph, yet some of the best shots I’ve taken have been two miles from home at Mount Auburn Cemetery. It’s hard to single out one great birding moment because there have been so many, like watching a brood of Mallard Ducklings being fed by their mother, or seeing a Red-tailed Hawk fly off a tree in pursuit of a squirrel, or proud Great Horned Owls guarding their chicks. What amazes me about Mount Auburn Cemetery is the great diversity of bird life that can be found in every season. All you have to do is find a good spot, like near any of the three lakes or the Dell, stay quiet, and ‘don’t just do something, stand there.’ You will not be disappointed.” — Rich Turk “A Worm-eating Warbler had not been seen in the area in several years. I wasn’t feeling well, and I had joined Bob Stymeist’s trip at 6 am but was not able to keep up with him. While trying to catch up, and walk- ing through the Dell, I came across a Worm-eating Warbler. I finally caught up with Bob at Willow Pond. I told Worm-eating Warbler by him about it, but I don’t think he Jeremiah Trimble believed me because he continued to walk around the pond very slowly. I was able to keep up with him and he went back through the Dell. When he got to where I had seen the bird, he heard it and pronounced “WORM-EATING WARBLER!” Now, that was fun but on the next day, I went to see it again to find the Dell jammed with birders. They were lined up on both the lower and upper paths making the Dell look like an amphitheater. Fortunately, they got to see the bird.” “My first Indigo Bunting seen at Willow Pond, the day I saw 14 warblers in one hour in May 2007, or when the Great Horned male finally mated in the Dell… when I first took my kids after purchasing them a Peterson Field Guide and binoculars, and they spotted several birds and highlighted and dated their see’s in their books (of course they loved the Tower and Spectacle Pond most)!” — Jay Joyce “My favorite birding experience at Mount Auburn Cemetery oc- curred about 12 years ago on Indian Ridge on a beautiful spring day in early May. On this day I remember there being more species of songbirds than I had ever seen in any one place. In a large, white oak tree along the path there were several Yellow- rumped Warblers, a Black-thr oated Blue Warbler, a Black-throated Green Warbler, an Indigo Bunting, a Northern Parula, and a Black-and-white Warbler all singing and foraging. This was around the time when I first started birding, and I was amazed at the great diversity of songbirds that could Yellow-rumped Warbler by be found at Mount Auburn during spring Brooks Mathewson migration. Ever since this first spring I have been visiting each April and May as often as I can to observe and photograph songbird migration. Each visit always brings memo- rable experiences observing birds as well as great interactions with knowledgeable and genuinely kind and interesting birders.”      — Brooks Mathewson “I had 15 minutes between appointments and, in passing through the Cemetery, noticed that the Tower was now open to the public. I thought a landscape shot of Boston from the top of the Tower would be a nice, quick shot. So, off I went. Three people were coming Red-tail on Tower Railing by down as I went up. I Anne Haggerty arrived at the top and as soon as I started to focus on Boston, I heard the hawk’s call...and then I watched as he floated up and landed on the railing right next to me. As you can see from the photo, my first instinct was to shoot pictures.” — Anne Haggerty “Two springs ago I watched a juvenile Red-tail screaming for his mother, who was only a few trees away but completely ignoring him. He perched on top of one of the taller headstones and kept it up for ten minutes!” — Roly Chaput — Ida Giriunas Spring/Summer 2012 | 5