Herriman Trail – July 19, 2006

Bunchberries

I finally got over to the Herriman Trail on the Nelson Road. I love this trail, it actually goes into the BWCAW. I am thinking about leading my VNP Birders on this trail next spring. There is some great habitat as part of the trail follows along the Echo River so there is some swampy shoreline where varied species live. Right away when I got out of my car I heard a Cuckoo. They are all over the place this year. I heard that the spruce bud worm is making an appearance again, and the cuckoos love caterpillars.
On the trail I get a rare look at a Winter Wren. He is silent but he flew right up alongside the trail into some brush and I can see his cute little body. Their tail sticks straight up.

The beginning of the trail has been brushed out by the Forest Service. The trail after the bridge is quite overgrown. There is a lot of dew on the foliage and we are going to get wet! Oh well, it’s hot. We found some huge ferns, they were nearly as tall as me!

It’s pretty quiet back here today, it has been way too hot and dry. But I still manage to see and hear some warblers. Magnolia, Nashville and Common Yellowthroat Warblers are in the trees.

A Yellow-bellied Sapsucker is squawking away in the brush and she looks surprised to see me gazing at her. She doesn’t fly and I get to see her gleaning the branches for insects. Life is good.

The bunchberries have put on loads of berries this year. I wonder if that has some significance? Maybe it will be a severe winter.

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