Photos and text by Jerry Jackson
A few weeks after the Orioles defeated the Blue Jays on opening day at Camden Yards, real Baltimore orioles began to appear around town. According to ebird.org, there were sightings in Patterson Park and Druid Hill Park as early as April 23. Spring migration is well underway and Baltimore has several birding hotspots to catch a variety of species – both resident and migrating. Over the past week I visited some of my favorite places.
The boat lake at Patterson Park was a good place to start. From a bird’s perspective, the park must appear as an oasis of green in sea of East Baltimore rooftops. Over the course of an hour, I saw almost three-dozen species including three Green herons, a Great blue heron, a Least bittern, a Yellow warbler and a Spotted sandpiper. At Druid Hill Park, I saw Yellow-rumped warblers, Black-and-white warblers and a Baltimore oriole in the field behind the Mansion House. A quiet walk late in the day at Cromwell Valley Park in Baltimore County yielded a couple of colorful gems – an Indigo bunting and a Common yellowthroat.
For anyone new to birding, the Baltimore Bird Club (baltimorebirdclub.org) is an excellent resource. They organize walks in many local birding spots including Fort McHenry, Lake Roland and Cylburn Arboretum.