I’m very fortunate to have President’s Day off from work. I’m even more fortunate that I live within walking distance to one of the best little parks in Lenawee County. That is Indian Crossing Trails Park in Tecumseh (MI). I thought today would be a good day to hike the trails in conjunction with the Great Backyard Bird Count. This bird count isn’t the biggest or most popular bird count of the year but I still enjoy it. It’s nice to get out and say hello to the locals (birds and people). I said hello to several Black-capped Chickadees and Titmouse. Heard and saw several Brown Creepers. Downy Woodpeckers seem to be around every corner. Canada Geese and Mallard can always be found wherever there is open water…and lately there’s always a Mute Swan or two with them. Today the geese were by Standish Dam. I wanted to get a closer look to see if there were any Cackling or Greater White Fronted Geese among them but I would have flushed them all trying to get a better vantage point. So I let them be and continued down the north trail along the river. This trail always seems to be the most active during all four seasons. Today was no different. I found large flocks of House Finches mixed with American Goldfinch. At one point I stopped along the trail to give some looks at a large flock of House Finches. And then as birds tend to do they suddenly all flushed for no apparent reason. Two seconds later the apparent reason appeared. A Coopers Hawk came souring in low and fast, crossed the trail 30′ in front of me and then disappeared across the river. Just as I was thinking to myself…”that was cool”…a Bald Eagle glided right over me just above the tree tops. No matter how many times I see the Bald Eagles in Tecumseh it never gets old. They are magnificent creatures. On the way back I managed to kick up two Great Blue Heron, a Red-tailed Hawk and a Kingfisher. I was satisfied. I had seen some nice birds. But the best was yet to come. Walking along Globe Mill Pond in route to my car I spotted a hawk circling over the pond. With no obstructions around me I was able to get a good look at it. At first it looked like a Red-tail…but this hawk had a striped tail. As it came closer and closer I was able to get a great look at its underside before it flew 50′ over my head. I was able to see the angular red barring on its wings and chest. Classic Red-shouldered Hawk! A life bird for me. Yep…I’m pretty spoiled to have Indian Crossing Trails in my back yard. I love Tecumseh!
Gregg Perez, Tecumseh, MI