Fall Warbler Migration continues through the mountains

Observers: Donna Willey
Email: basina@verizon.net
Date: 09/18/2007
Time: 05:27 PM -0400

Beautiful is this season in Mammoth; fall Indian summer days, not too warm but not cold either… yet the hint of cool weather is there… especially as dusk falls and the evenings turn cold and then again, waking in the early morning finding ice on the sprinkler attached to the hose and the hose cold and crackling with the water turned to ice frozen inside. I wonder if today the warblers will be gone; did they migrate in the night leaving the high altitude heading south or when I wake will I see them moving through the aspens, hopping, turning, poking, disappearing and then re-appearing again always new, always different fascinating me with their constant motion… Through my garden 6 species have passed on their way to parts unknown and these are probably my last photos of these fall warblers which charm me and leave me breathless with their scurrying flight. Nashville, Orange-crowned, Audubon’s Yellow-rumped, Wilson’s, MacGillivray’s and a Yellow Warbler… 6 warblers and there are probably 8 (or maybe more?) that pass through or breed in the Sierra’s… I saw a Townsend’s but never did see a Hermit warbler, not this fall… but maybe there is still time… I understand now why the constant movement as we had a visitor pop-in on silent wing looking for his breakfast. I was concealed and have photos of the cooper’s hawk who left my garden with empty talons and grumbling belly. Every bird in sight scattered before I knew that the shadow taking bird-form and flying across my yard was an accipiter who alighted 5 feet from where I hid. I have to be honest, I guess I am glad he didn’t dine on one of my friends, the neotropical migrants; just for today he must find breakfast elsewhere…