Goldfinch in full bloom

Celery Farm baby boom


   I have not seen or heard from the Ace family, and the mama wood duck and her babies have disappeared into marshes. The baby robins have flown the nest as well.

  But that doesn't mean the Celery Farm baby boom is waning. (said Elmer Fudd).

  On Sunday in the natural area, I saw a wood duck mom and several offspring scampering along the edge of the lake across from the Warden's Watch.

   Later, at the Pirie Platform, I took the photo above.

   I know, it's pretty far away and the ducklings are more like dot-lings, but it wouldn't hurt to use your imagination once in a while.

   Those are six wood ducklings with their mom, and I have witnesses to prove it, including....

   Ardent birder Stephanie Seymour birded the Celery Farm big-time yesterday, and she confirmed the maternity-ward scenario.

   Among her sightings:

   * A male red-bellied woodpecker "bringing food to its squeaking, whiny young."

    * A song sparrow and a baby. Stephanie writes that she "heard a very faint call - 'eep' or 'seep,' but barely above a whispery voice. I located the tiny baby sparrow on a limb but couldn't tell what kind it was because it was just a little blob of a bird.   

  "Then the parent song sparrow came up with food for the little baby, and the baby flapped around and was very excited by imminent food."

   * A catbird feeding a kittenbird.

   * A female cardinal flying around with her young.

   * and (saving the best for last) a female wood duck with six little ones, and other with seven little ones, for a grand total of 13 ducklings.

   Great job!

   Please note: All tiny bird Binkies found on the trail should be left at the lost-and-found at the kiosk at the Franklin Turnpike entrance.