Ray Duffy reports:
We checked on the status of the raven nest and noticed a lot of progress. The nest looks as it did prior to being washed out by the storm and they appear to be defending it.
In this case, we got to see a battle royal for the territory. Not long after one of the ravens came to the nest, a red-tailed hawk flew along the ridge. One of the ravens went to intercept it and a dog fight between the two started with each maneuvering around to harass the other.
Eventually, the raven’s mate come out and they started double teaming the hawk. They chased it over the ridge and back. Not too long after returning to the park side of the ridge that a peregrine falcon bolted in and started going after the ravens.
Then the falcon decided it was time to harass the hawk. Then it kited over the ridge and gave a scolding call. The peregrine had enough fight for everyone as it decided to buzz an unsuspecting great black-backed gull that crossed its path as well.
More of Ray's report, including American Woodcocks, follows. (Thanks, Ray!)
Elaine and Mickey Raine can often be seen, cameras at the ready, at Meadowlands walks and cleanups, and their photography appears on this blog fairly regularly.
Although they seem a bit inseparable, we thought we would each give them their own Photographers Showcase — ladies first.
We have been passionate fans of the Meadowlands for about five years now, and being avid hikers and enthusiasts of nature in all capacities, this region had immediately captured our hearts from the very first visit to DeKorte Park.
Like many, we, too, were guilty of the negative impression cast upon the Meadowlands, generated from years and years of abuse during the not too distant past, and although the remarkable work of the Meadowlands Commission and the state was in full gear from decades ago, it was not something many folks thought about, outside of birders and those who grew up locally, seeing and knowing first-hand the great improvements being administered.
Two more photos and more commentary follow.
Elaine and Mickey's Flickr site, with more Meadowlands pix, is here.
Had a great turnout for our First Sunday walk at Mill Creek Marsh — especially considering the walk was a tad on the chilly/windy side.
Highlights included 24 Cedar Waxwings (FOY) and three Bald Eagles. A Herring Gull may have been seen during the walk. Still awaiting the judges' decision.
Full list and a point-and-shoot-camera shot of one of the eagles follow.