I observed some tracks on the snow, most likely from a ground squirrel. They were similar to the tracks from the week before. It was hard to make them out. The weather was the same as with the finch, clear and cold. The tracks were in a private, very small front yard (this neighborhood is wall to wall brownstone buildings for the most part).
This week I saw several small finches. I am unable to identify exactly which species they are. These birds were in the snow, underneath an evergreen bush. They were spotted in a church yard in a very dense neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York. There was a community of anywhere from twenty to thirty of them. They were using their energy to mostly forage for food in the snow. They rested for some time and didn't seem too bothered by my coming up to watch them. Several of them were content with just resting on lower branches in side the bushes. The weather was quite cold and sunny. It seemed to me these birds were not exerting too much energy.
This Greater scaurp's (Aythya marila) were observed in the East River near the mouth to New York bay in New York City. It was bobbing in and out of water. It also dived for a short period of time. The birds must have been diving for food to eat. The East River is actually a tidal strait, so there would be salt water organisms living in the water. The weather was overcast and the temperature was at about 36 degrees. Though there was a winter storm earlier in the week the weather been fair for several days. I did notice one duck of the same species nearby, but they seemed to only be interested in diving for food and nothing else. It should be noted that there was ice floating on the water nearby on the shore. This made me think that since this animal depends on open water for food, it would be unable to live anywhere where there would be complete ice cover. This observation took place in the middle of the city on a new park. It is right across the river from the financial district in lower Manhattan, so there is lots of boat traffic and noise from helicopters at all hours. The bird was mostly just diving for food, and I did not see it straining too hard to do anything.
Seen in wetlands on pier 1
On Baptisia australis on pier 6
Collecting pollen from Rosa rugosa