Beware of Blackbird: Marsh Discovery Trail

A quick lunchtime walk along DeKorte Park's Marsh Discovery Trail was filled with dining swallows and assorted ducks — plus a very aggressive Red-winged Blackbird who swooped close overhead on two occasions as we tried to get out of range as quickly as possible.

In the above photo, he can seen giving us the hairy eyeball. Clearly, this dude is protecting a nest.  If walking the MDT, best to wear a hat and walk briskly.

5 thoughts on “Beware of Blackbird: Marsh Discovery Trail

  1. Mike G.

    This guy has been dive-bombing hapless passersby for a while. I’ve seen it attack security guards when they walk the trail, and am routinely flown at myself. It flies up behind you and hisses just off your shoulder, which is somewhat disconcerting. If you turn around, you will see it flying right at your face, eye level.
    You will look silly, but if you wave your arms over your head as you walk past the attack-bird, it won’t come after you.

  2. julie mccall

    He buzzed me on sunday as well – (i even recorded him!) – but never made contact. I’m building a collection, it seems, of protective birds that mob me. For this year, I’ve got three species. I guess we have life lists, patch lists, state lists, etc… why not a Mob List? 🙂

  3. Herb Flavell

    He is trying to get back at humans. In the 1940s the Redwing was no friend of the farmer. There was a farm in Moonachie that was a crossed from our house on route 17 in Wood-Ridge. There was a tree line that bordered the farm. The farmer invited us kids to shoot them as they flew from feeding areas in Paramus and other areas up that way. Every night just before dark they would fly into the Moonachie and Carlstadt meadows to roost for the night. They flew over in waves of thousands of birds including Redwings and Starlings. We would pick a bird to aim at but because there were so many with each shot from our shotguns, we dropped 5 or 6 birds with each shot. The farmer was happy because it saved his seeds as they worked their way north the next morning. They also want to get even with humans for destroying so much of the meadows that were their roosting areas that are now destroyed by so many factories and warehouses plus the track, Giants stadium and other commercial enterprises. But that’s progress I guess. I wish I would have bought a few thousand acres of swamp for 25 cents an acre at the time. But who wanted swamp land.


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