This morning while in the woods to the north of the Indiana University cross country course, I noticed an interesting vivid yellow bird flitting about and occasionally singing. When I finally focused my binoculars on the bird I was very pleased to see a Prothonotary Warbler! That's BIGBY species #105 for the year. (If you’d like to know more about the BIGBY "green birding" movement, see: http://bit.ly/bGUVxi).
While I have seen this species a few times around here in the past, this was the best view I've ever had, thanks to the bright morning sun and my new binoculars. What a beautiful bird, contrasted against a clear blue sky!!! The Prothonotary is now my favorite bird with yellow-themed coloration (my apologies to the Eastern Meadowlark). I also love the derivation of their name. BNA Online says: "...the species was named for its plumage, which resembles the bright yellow robes of papal clerks (prothonotaries) in the Roman Catholic church."
I also had a second first-of-year BIGBY species today. This one was a little more mundane, although it was in an odd spot. A Solitary Sandpiper was foraging on a very small "mudflat" in the pond in front of the Fountain Park apartment complex on Bloomington's East 10th Street.
A few other species of interest from today:
* Northern Parula
* Nashville Warbler
* Yellow-throated Warbler
* Worm-eating Warbler
* Ruby-crowned Kinglet
* White-eyed Vireo
* Red-eyed Vireo
* White-crowned Sparrow
* White-throated Sparrow (singing!)
* Dark-eyed Junco (singing!)