Norman G. Wilder Field Trip Report

by Chris Bennett

White-eyed Vireo by Carolyn Holland.

Saturday, May 13, 2023 – 8:00 am to 12:30 pm
Leaders: Chris Bennett, Anthony Gonzon
Participants: Five

Weather: Overcast with a brief period of light rain around 9 am – then continued overcast for remainder of the trip. Temperature in the low 70s with humidity above 75%.

For those not familiar with Norman G. Wilder Wildlife Area, it is located a few miles west and north of Felton, Delaware in central Kent County. The area is characterized by mature mixed hardwood forest with extensive areas of wet woods. The area is made up of several tracts that are accessible via dirt roads through the forested tracts from a number of gravel parking lots. The wildlife area provides the largest publicly accessible forest tracts in Kent County.

Kentucky Warbler by Mary Braun.

While migrant neotropical songbird numbers were disappointing, local nesting songbirds did not disappoint. The group got excellent views of Kentucky, Worm-eating, Black-and-white, Blackpoll, Yellow-rumped and Magnolia Warblers (we also heard but did not see, or see well, Northern Waterthrush, Northern Parula, Black-throated Green, Pine and American Redstart), Red-eyed and White-eyed Vireos, Great Crested Flycatcher, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Summer and Scarlet Tanager, Yellow-breasted Chat, Blue Grosbeak and Indigo Bunting. We also had brief glimpses of flyover Yellow-billed Cuckoos and Pileated Woodpeckers. Besides birds, we found a recently hatched ring-necked snake, saw a few Fowler’s toads, heard quite a few gray treefrogs and saw many red-spotted purple butterflies. The group walked a total of 2.72 miles (out and back on the same road) in just over 4.5 hours. We tallied a total of 50 species and 223 individual birds.

eBird Checklist:

Group photo by Anthony Gonzon.

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