A visit to Montrose Point / by Walter Kitundu

It is finally spring in Chicago and the migrants are flowing north following the coast of Lake Michigan. A popular stopover is the Magic Hedge at Montrose Point Bird Sanctuary. I visited the other day and chalked up some life birds and tried to get to know the place a bit better. It will be a regular stopover for BirdLightWind as well so stay tuned for a lot more from the Magic Hedge.

Sometimes the common birds are overlooked but these glorious Mallards decided to put on a show.

Northern Rough-winged Swallows confront one another on the beach.

Rough-wings are about as beautiful as a brown bird can get. It is a fun challenge to photograph these little jet fighters in flight.

Red-winged Blackbirds were on duty fiercely protecting their territories.

Left: Returning after chasing off an intruder. Right: I love this pose as the tail hits the rope just before the feet.

I had never seen an Ovenbird before but there were about 10 of them around.

Tail held high with a high-stepping gate. These little birds are charmers.

This bird was so busy foraging that it walked right up to me as I lay flat on the trail.

Ovenbird with teeny tiny prey.

Some closer view of a fascinating little bird.

Robins and Grackles are busy nest building. Their nest sites are quickly getting obscured by new leaves and flowers as the arrival of spring transforms the landscape.

The surprise of the day and a new life bird came in the form of the American Woodcock and its partner who held court in the shadows.