Past butterfly and bird assessment at Alewife

New Sightings at Alewife Reservation
May 20, 2012

Hello friends of Alewife,
I’ve recently learned about the upper Alewife Reservation/Silver Maple Forest situation and have set to documenting the richness of the flora and fauna found there. Also enjoyed an excellent walk there led by Anne-Marie Lambert on Sunday, May 20th.

I’m sure those of you who visit the site on a regular have seen many amazing things, I feel compelled to chime in that the biological richness of this niche urban wild is incredible and invaluable.

This is video of butterflies working on the abundant phlox blooming now on the edge of the big meadow by the silver maples: (see video immediately below)

Some photos from the flood plain woods between Little Pond and the silver maples including observations of a buck white-tailed deer just starting to grow in its new antlers for the 2012 season:

Additional notes:
Cooper’s Hawk observed capturing a vole in the silver maple forest Red-tailed Hawk perch hunting in the silver maple forest. Photo:
Mink tracks photographed
Woodcock still making display flights just after sunset around open areas of meadow as of May 19th (including at the “Discovery Park” area).
Killdeer present, probably nesting
Hummingbird moth observed in the big phlox patch

Butterflies currently active in the site (these are the most visible ones):
American Lady
Red Admiral

Following birds in the general area Little River/Silver Maples May 20th:
Wood Thrush (calling from the silver maples, this species is declining in New England forested habitat, great to hear it here)
Baltimore Oriole
Warbling Vireo
Yellow Warbler
Song Sparrow
Cedar Waxwing
American Robin
Common Grackle
Red-winged Blackbird
Red-tailed Hawk
Coopers Hawk
Northern Flickr
Downy Woodpecker
Black-capped Chickadee
Mourning Dove
Mallard (female with young)
Wood Duck (mated pair, probably nesting)
Black-crowned Night Heron
Great Blue Heron (many, suspect they are nesting somewhere in the area)
American Woodcock

Note: I’m a technical tree climber (rope and harness) who uses non-damaging techniques to climb forest trees for the purposes of research and nature recreation, some of the photos are taken from a large pin oak in the swamp forest.

Andrew Joslin
Jamaica Plain, MA