2019 – ADK Yard Birds & Butterflies

Spending time and birding in the ADK (Adirondack Mountains) has been one of our favorite pastimes for 20 years. We have spent most of this time in the Champlain Region of the ADK. Now we are in the Central Adirondacks on a heavily wooded lot. Needless to say, we see a lot more birds in the new location.

Champlain Adirondacks

Our yard in Willsboro NY was in Buena Vista Park which has been a popular summer vacation location since the 1930s. Most of the birds were in the big maple tree where we hung a feeder. All the usual suspects including Black-capped Chickadees, White-breasted Nuthatch, Downy Woodpeckers, and the occasional Chipping Sparrow.

Some of the more interesting neighboring birds were a House Wren that liked to nap when he wasn’t singing. Pileated Woodpeckers are always a favorite but not so much for the pair of Merlins terrorizing small birds.

We planted a garden in 2011 and this added quite a few new regulars. The Ruby-throated Hummingbirds can’t resist Bee Balm and American Goldfinch appreciated the ready source of food.

The garden also attracted a good number of butterflies and insects. We missed getting a photo of a Hummingbird Moth but managed this shot of a Painted Lady sipping a coneflower. Our friend Jeff Babson posted that you can pet a Bumble Bee and it’s true! I’ve done it and they don’t mind at all. Shout out to Jeff for the ID help.

Central Adirondacks

In 2016, we bought a new place on a heavily wooded lot in the Central ADK. One of the big surprises is that we have nesting birds on the property including American Robin and Blackburnian Warbler. This little guy should not have left the nest and dad was quite distraught trying to get him to fly back. We left the area and both were gone a couple of hours later. Obviously hoping he made it back.

It’s not surprising is that we have quite a few moths in the yard. Our favorite is the Rosy Maple that was written about for the Adirondack Explorer. Two more that we like are the Reversed Haploa and Polyphemus moths. Love the great camo, big wings spots, and comb-like antennae on the Polyphemus moth.

Best, and new to us butterflies are the Northern Pearly Eye and White Admiral. We can’t wait to find the next beautiful butterfly.

We are happy to have milkweed and careful not to cut this critical food source for the Monarch Butterflies. Ten years ago couldn’t drive on Rt 22 without hitting them. Now, we only see a couple a day.

We look forward to many more days of being serenaded by Hermit Thrush, Ovenbird, and Red-eyed Vireo. We have already had the yard owl trifecta – Barred, Eastern Screech-Owl and Great Horned. More good birds and butterflies ahead.

Eagle Bay Yard Birds:   36  Willsboro Yard Birds: 23

Next up: Burbank Birding