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June 29, 2021

Orchard Oriole

Notes and Changes since last report

  • It was 90°F, mostly clear and breezy at 12:00 PM on June 29, 2021.
  • Orchard oriole was listed for the first time on this report.
  • Banded hairstreaks were breaking records today.
  • This week's trail report covers the Wappinger Creek Trail side of the trail system.

The Trails

  • In spite of the temperature, the milkweed at the Gifford House trailhead had to be inspected.
  • A little glassywing was working its way around the shady side.
  • The mystery caterpillars from a few weeks ago had pupated and emerged in mass (quite the scene), leaving empty pupal cases.
  • A few adults were still lingering. Oak webworm moth was a relatively easy determination now - none of my books had had the caterpillar.
  • Constant chatter had been coming from above. It was an orchard oriole - so much darker than the more familiar Baltimore oriole .
  • In the same tree was a rose-breasted grosbeak.
  • It's not unusual for a common wood-nymph to land on a sock or leg to get a little salt.
  • Yarrow doesn't attract a lot of butterflies or moths, but plume moths are one of the several interesting things that do come.
  • A pair of mating cabbage whites was resting in the shade on sensitive fern.
  • Tree swallows occupy the bluebird boxes in the Old Hayfield by Gifford House.
  • They must be mistaking me for somebody else, for they seek me out and swoop down from above, delivering a scolding chirp inches from the top of my head.
  • A colorful - and peaceful - bee was working over another yarrow.
  • In the welcome cool of the Sedge Meadow Trail, a female rose-breasted grosbeak passed by the boardwalk.
  • Way up ahead on the left, a tiny dark triangle stood out.
  • It was one of several mourning cloaks to be seen lately.
  • In the back Old Hayfield, another common wood-nymph paused in the sun... on poison ivy.
  • It obliged with good views above and below.
  • Hidden way in the back, Canada lily was blooming.
  • Back out in the open, yellow-collared scape moth was on milkweed.
  • A flash of hotdog mustard went by - no doubt about the Delaware skipper.
  • All the way at the end of the Old Pasture there was a little blur by the oaks: the first banded hairstreak of the day.
  • There would be clusters perched on and spiraling above all the bright leaves along the Wappinger Creek Trail ahead.
  • Down by the Watershed kiosk, tall meadow-rue was stretching towards the water.
  • The flower is like little white fireworks.
  • Down in the floodplain, stinging nettle was flowering.
  • Innocent looking wood nettle grew in an expanding colony.
  • Its flowers had a way to go yet.
  • A red admiral was laying eggs on the youngest nettles. Several butterflies use nettles as baby food.
  • It wasn't a great view from below, but enough to tell that it's quite different from above.
  • The bench at trail marker 10 was the place to be today.
  • A common merganser floated by below while a ruby-throated hummingbird perched above.
  • In between, dozens of banded hairstreaks were on the leaves, in the air, on tree trunks...
  • ... and on yours truely.
  • Next week: the Cary Pines Trail side of the trail system.


  • 1 Common Merganser
  • 2 Chimney Swift
  • 1 Downy Woodpecker
  • 1 Northern Flicker
  • 1 Eastern Wood-Pewee
  • 1 Acadian Flycatcher
  • 1 Least Flycatcher
  • 3 Eastern Phoebe
  • 5 Red-eyed Vireo
  • 2 Blue Jay
  • 4 Tree Swallow
  • 3 White-breasted Nuthatch
  • 1 House Wren
  • 3 Veery
  • 2 Wood Thrush
  • 5 American Robin
  • 2 Gray Catbird
  • 1 Cedar Waxwing
  • 1 Prairie Warbler
  • 1 American Redstart
  • 4 Ovenbird
  • 1 Louisiana Waterthrush
  • 1 Common Yellowthroat
  • 2 Eastern Towhee
  • 2 Field Sparrow
  • 3 Song Sparrow
  • 1 Northern Cardinal
  • 2 Rose-breasted Grosbeak
  • 1 Indigo Bunting
  • 2 Orchard Oriole
  • 5 American Goldfinch
  • 22 Cabbage White
  • 2 Clouded Sulphur
  • 31 Banded Hairstreak
  • 14 Great Spangled Fritillary
  • 2 Mourning Cloak
  • 1 Red Admiral
  • 1 Northern Pearly-eye
  • 12 Little Wood-Satyr
  • 21 Common Wood-Nymph
  • 3 Silver-spotted Skipper
  • 2 Least Skipper
  • 1 European Skipper
  • 3 Little Glassywing
  • 1 Delaware Skipper
  • 1 Oak webworm
  • 1 Plume moth
  • 1 Yellow-collared scape moth
  • 1 Stinging nettle
  • 1 Tall meadow-rue