Mariton: Birding At Hugh Moore Park

May 27, 2014

by Tim Burris, Preserve Manager.  Photos by Carole Mebus.

Our group went to Hugh Moore Park on Tuesday.  This park is located in Easton along the Lehigh River and Canal.  We got to see some birds that we haven’t seen on other field trips.  We also got better views of some species that we had seen previously.  We probably got our best look at Blue-gray Gnatcatchers here.

MEBUS BarnSwallowHughMoorePark0527

Barn Swallow

At one point we could see Barn Swallows, Tree Swallows and Rough-winged Swallows at the same time.  It really helped me be able to differentiate between Tree and Rough-winged Swallows to see them side by side.

MEBUS BaltimoreOrioleHughMoorePark0527

I never get tired of seeing Baltimore Orioles, and we saw them quite a bit.

The highlight of the day was a Yellow-throated Warbler.  This is not a common warbler, and everyone got to see it briefly; several of us saw it really well.  I don’t think anyone got a photo.  Because it is so uncommon, we were concentrating on making sure that everyone saw it, instead of stopping to take a photo.  That was a big thrill for me and the Price of Admission bird of the morning.

MEBUS TigerSwallowtailsPuddlingHughMoorePark0527

Besides the birds we also saw this group of butterflies puddling.  The yellow butterflies are Eastern Tiger Swallowtails.  The lone black butterfly is a Spicebush Swallowtail.  Butterflies do this to get minerals, salts, amino acids from the mud.  You can also see this behavior on dead animals or even scat where butterflies are trying to get essential nutrients.

Next week we wind up the weekly birding series with a trip to Lake Nockamixon.