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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Beware where you walk!

A friend shared a great photograph with me this morning.  She almost stepped on a ground nest while out and about.  I thought it would be prudent to mention that there are quite a few ground nesting birds that you should be on the lookout for while hiking on this beautiful weekend. 

 Some of the ground nesting birds to look for that will actually nest in a road way or gravel trail include: Horned Lark (I almost stepped on a Horned Lark nest during a breeding bird survey) and Kildeer.  

Other ground nesting birds include but are not limited to: Ovenbirds, American Tree Sparrow (they nest on or near the ground), White Throated Sparrows (on or near the ground), Kentucky Warbler (very pretty and uncommon), American Woodcock, Black and White Warblers, Roughed Grouse, Eastern Towhee, and House Sparrow.  All birds prefer a specific habitat from woodland to grasslands, and everything in between.  No matter where you walk, note that you may encounter a ground nesting bird.  This is one of the reasons that its paramount to make sure that you are aware of where your pets and your feet are traveling.  You want to minimize disturbance of any ground nesting birds!

As a general housekeeping item, I wanted to let you know that taxonomy of Lesser Celandine has changed.  I noted in my post that it was Ranunculus fiaria, however, the new name of Celandine is Ficaria verna.  As more information is learned each day about the various species in taxonomic orders, they need to be rearranged to better suit their characteristics.  Basically it adds up to always having to update your field guides and plant books to make sure that you have the most up-to-date names.  Or what I tend to do is just write the new name into my field guide. This tends to be a lot of writing because I bought my favorite field guide used on Amazon: The Illustrated Guide to Wildflowers and Shrubs by William Carey Grimm.  My book has a 1993 copyright date!  I'll leave you with my great photograph!

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