May found migration for birds very much underway as they occupied their niche on their breeding grounds or they continued their travels to destinations further north. Both odonates and butterflies continued to emerge and pursue the creation of a new generation.
In Goochland County, Va. I visited a very promising juncus marsh which provided a Virginia Rail, Sora, 4 territorial Black Rails (one flushed and observed and the others very vocal), plus one American Bittern present for two weeks.
In Fluvanna County, while pursuing odonates, a Swallow-tailed Kite soared from the south to a destination further north.
A trip to Highland County, Virginia in late May provided a count of five (5) Mourning Warblers at Paddy Knob, three (3) Black-billed Cuckoos in various locations, several Magnolia Warblers, Yellow-rumped Warblers and American Woodcock (one of which was flushed from nest). A Beaverpond Baskettail male and then a female were netted and photographed. All in all a successful trip with 100+ breeding birds and an interesting ode presentation even though it appears emergence is behind previous years.
Some photographs from the month are as follows: