Trip Reports
Doodletown (Rockland County) — June 4, 2017

This trip was sponsored by the Edgar A. Mearns Bird Club, a NYSYBC Partner Organization. Special thanks go to our trip leaders, Gerhard Patsch and Bob Slechta, for giving us their time and helping us find many birds and learn about the history of Doodletown as well as its flora and fauna. Gerhard and Bob have led many trips for us since we began back in 2008, and we deeply appreciate their support and friendship.

Birding near the reservoir, photo by Carena Pooth
Birding near the reservoir - Photo by Carena Pooth

Doodletown, supposedly derived from the Dutch word Dood Tal, or Dead Valley, was a great trip. The early June weather was perfect for birding. The cerulean sky blended perfectly with the Cerulean Warblers we saw!

After introductions, we proceeded up a steep hike with views of Iona Marsh, then encountered our first of many Cerulean Warblers.

Right after the steep part of the trip, an elusive Worm-eating Warbler was located. As we proceeded to the reservoir, we saw a Devil's-walking Stick, a plant I wouldn't want to get too close to. Orchard Orioles were spotted at the reservoir, along with many bright Baltimore Orioles, a nesting Orchard Oriole and nesting Eastern Kingbirds. I saw the kingbird thieving nest material from the oriole!

It was really cool to see a tree, still standing, that was almost completely gnawed through by beavers. A single Mallard was the only waterfowl spotted. A Yellow-throated Vireo gave us close looks and great pictures. We came across a Black-throated Green Warbler among the ruins of Doodletown, and multiple Yellow-billed Cuckoos, including one that gave us a really great look, were seen. Some group members saw Hooded Warblers, a target species for the trip. We did not, however, spot the Kentucky Warbler that had been seen here before.

The biggest surprise was when an American Woodcock was flushed! It hastily fled into the woods.

On the way back, we were treated to more Cerulean Warblers as well as brilliant Scarlet Tanagers. A satisfying trip, one that included several lifers for me!

                                                                                                                 — Eliza Wein, Age 13

      View photo gallery

          List of Birds Seen on this Trip  by Adrian Burke (18) and Jordan Spindel (16)

Canada Goose
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
Red-tailed Hawk
American Woodcock
Yellow-billed Cuckoo
Black-billed Cuckoo
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Pileated Woodpecker
Olive-sided Flycatcher
Eastern Wood-Pewee
Eastern Phoebe
Great Crested Flycatcher
Eastern Kingbird
Yellow-throated Vireo

Warbling Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Blue Jay
American Crow
Cliff Swallow
Barn Swallow
Black-capped Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
Carolina Wren
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Wood Thrush
American Robin
Gray Catbird
Cedar Waxwing
Worm-eating Warbler
Blue-winged Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
Hooded Warbler

American Redstart
Cerulean Warbler
Yellow Warbler
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Black-thr. Green Warbler
Chipping Sparrow
Scarlet Tanager
Northern Cardinal
Indigo Bunting
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird
Orchard Oriole
Baltimore Oriole
House Finch
American Goldfinch

      Species Total: 54