Birmingham Audubon field trippers welcomed March with an exploratory trip to part of Alabama’s Black Belt. The historic town of Lownesboro with its picturesque churches and houses of the mid-18th century was our starting point. In addition to the buildings, several Eurasian Collared Doves and the usual yard birds were observed.
On the way to the next spot, both Black and Turkey Vultures were spotted at roosts in some roadside swamps and some were beginning to soar. Parts of Holy Ground Battlefield Park were still closed for the winter, but Greg Harber led us on a hike through some bottomland hardwood forest to the overlook on the Alabama. Lingering winter visitors such Ruby-crowned Kinglet and White-throated Sparrows accompanied the hikers.
An extended trip through Selma for some, a more direct way for others and there we were at Old Cahawba Archaeological Park, enjoying warm spring sun and a picnic on the grounds. The remainder of the day was spent exploring Alabama’s first capital, now a remnant of its former glory-streets with no houses; in the grounds, depressions which were once basements or possibly wells leading one to speculate on what matter of artifacts may still be found. The operator of the visitor’s center allowed us access to the restored Episcopal Church on the grounds-with its handworked trusses and soaring ceiling.
Most of the trippers ended the day with a short hike through part of the Prairie Preserve adjacent to the Park and found Song and Swamp Sparrow, birds of note.
To end the day, 10 trippers chose to search for a possible Short-eared Owl near the Kite fields of Prattville to no avail, but we were serenaded by a pack of Coyotes.
A total of 50 species was tallied for the day. All had a nice day.
Lowndesboro, Holy Ground Battlefield Park, Old Cahawba Archeological Park and Old Cahawba Prairie Preserve Field Trip
March 1, 2014
Total – 50 species
Great Blue Heron