Report a Sighting

Here is the place to post your sighting of animals and of plants in the Sligo Creek watershed or in the Park itself and to peruse what others have seen and reported. It is a fascinating list, growing year by year. No need to feel shy; what is of interest to you is what is fine to post, and interesting behavior and surprising locations are useful to record. Thanks for taking part - as a reader or as a reporter - in the web of life in Sligo Creek.

Carol Boston thesis on technology and
Sligo Sightings, 2011-2013 (48-page PDF)
  Notations by Friends of Sligo Creek
on Boston thesis (1-page PDF)

What Where When Reported by Comments
Newborn faun In the headwaters section of Sligo Creek by Yates Street Thu, May 26, 2016 Ed Murtagh A newborn fawn without its mother along the trail
Photo by Ed Murtagh
red-eyed vireo, blackpoll warbler, blue-gray gnatcatcher Near Forest Glen Road 1pm, Wed, May 25, 2016 Julie Mangin Web Photo of Blackpoll Warbler
Northern green frogs (4) Wetlands area on the other side of the bridge from the playground just upstream from Forest Glen Road 1pm, Wed, May 25, 2016 Julie Mangin Photo by Julie Mangin
Yellow-crowned Night Heron Sligo Creek Trail at Crosby Road, just inside the Beltway 8:30am, Wed, May 25, 2016 Bob Cantor It appeared to be catching worms just several feet off of the trail and not paying much attention to all the people walking or jogging by.
Photo by Bob Cantor
Ash tree female flowers, maple-leaf viburnum flowering, large black gum tree, one spotted wintergreen, abundant wild yam, witch-hazel with many insect galls Woodland between Hillwood Manor Park and Pepco corridor (downstream from NH Ave) Fri, May 20, 2016 Michael Wilpers Ash flowers were visible on branches reaching out toward the first bridge over the creek below Hillwood Manor Park. (Male flowers would be on different trees.) Especially worth admiring since 99% of ashes will die soon from invasive beetle. Viburnum bush was big -- about 8 ft tall & wide -- overlooking the creek.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Great number of Blue Toadflax flowering. Also many tall blackberry, dewberry, a mystery blackberry, cinquefoil, & bedstraw In the powerline corridor between Sligo Creek and 16th Place Sat, May 21, 2016 Michael Wilpers By far the greatest abundance of Blue Toadflax I've seen there in ten years, probably because of the disturbance from building the new tower, since the plant is an annual and is an early colonizer of old fields.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Yellow-crowned Night heron In the grassy area on the right bank at Maple Ave & Sligo Parkway mid-afternoon, Sun, May 22, 2016 Bruce Sidwell Photo by Genie Sidwell
Canada Warbler Sligo trail next to Kemp Mill Shopping Center just upstream from University Blvd 5:30pm, Tue, May 17, 2016 Angela Atwood-Moore The pretty black "necklace" on this little guy along with his vivid eye ring makes the male of the species unmistakable. He's also got a quirky, bubbly song. Web Photo
American Redstart male upstream from Park Valley Rd 1pm, Mon, May 16, 2016 Kit Gage Another Redstart probably not the same one reported by Julie Mangin
Web Photo
Scarlet Tanager On the Sligo Creek trail between Dennis Avenue and Forest Glen Road, at the bridge with the ford next to it 12:30pm, Mon, May 16, 2016 Julie Mangin Photo by Julie Mangin
American Redstart The side trail of the Sligo Creek trail that runs up near Cody Drive - between Dennis Avenue and Forest Glen Road 12:45pm, Mon, May 16, 2016 Julie Mangin Web Photo
Yellow Billed Cuckoo and 2 male Scarlet Tanagers Just downstream from Piney Branch Road 3pm, Sun, May 15, 2016 Katherine Payne Web Photo
Pair of Baltimore Orioles and group of Cedar Waxwings Bridge in tree perimeter by soccer field, across from golf course 3pm, Fri, May 13, 2016 Katherine Payne Web Photo
Blue Toadflax and Azure Bluets in bloom, along with lots of flowering Northern Dewberry In the Pepco corridor between the creek and 16th Place Sat, May 7, 2016 Michael Wilpers Several colonies of toadflax, 5-6 stems each, and bluets were flowering only in the barely re-vegetated area where a new giant tower was recently erected (to replace an old one). Both were listed as a "rare wildflower" in the 2003 survey of Sligo natives. Toadflax was not observed flowering until May 26 in our 2013 survey, while the bluets bloomed 4/13-5/6 that year.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
3 Scarlet Tanagers - 2 male, 1 female Canopy of a tree just downstream from the Carroll Avenue Bridge 10:30am, Thu, May 5, 2016 Kit Gage I and a bunch of home school elementary aged kids were walking the path and one of the parents and kids first saw the birds. We watched them flitting around two different trees - one Paulownia, and another unidentified. Clearly 2 bright males and a duller yellow green female. Definitely not cardinals.
Photo by Kit Gage
Web Photo
Northern Parula and 2 Black & White warblers Left bank near parking lot near Three Oaks Drive - just downstream from Colesville Rd 3:30pm, Tue, May 3, 2016 Katherine Payne Web Photo of Northern Parula

Web Photo of B & W Warbler
Yellow Crowned Night Heron just downstream from Wayne Ave 6pm, Tue, Apr 19, 2016 Norman van der Sluys Photo by Norman van der Sluys
Fireflies / Lightning Bugs Long Branch Trail Near Hudson Ave. 10:30pm, Thu, Mar 21, 2016 Michael Laugherty The other night while walking on the Long Branch trail, I noticed Lightning Bugs flashing. I don't recall seeing them this early. Perhaps I am mistaken?
Yellow Crowned Night Heron On the shore across from the playground at Kennebec ave near where Hilltop and Mississippi converge 7:40pm, Sat, Mar 16, 2016 Aaron Pendergrass 2013 Photo by Lenore Boulet
Nesting Geese Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds Wed, Mar 13, 2016 Bob Cantor There are at least 4 geese sitting on nests at the ponds. All of them appear to be high enough that they are unlikely to be flooded out.
Photo by Bob Cantor of most obvious nest
Minnows, salamander and crawfish Long Branch Trail between Hudson and Carroll Ave. 2:30pm, Tue, Mar 12, 2016 Michael Laugherty I have been keeping an eye on the Long Branch Trail stream since I live nearby and take walks daily. I have noticed numerous schools of minnows with some slightly larger fish occasionally. In addition, today I found a salamander living under a rock along the creek bank. It swam out into the water and seemed very healthy. Finally, at the Carroll Ave Bridge I saw a fairly large crawfish crawling along the bottom of the stream floor along with many schools of minnows.
immature yellow crowned night heron Schuyler Rd and Sligo Creek Parkway, just upstream from Wayne Ave After supper, Tue, Mar 8, 2016 Katherine Payne Sitting on a branch over the creek
Web Photo
American Kestrel In the Pepco powerline corridor between Sligo Creek and 16th Place (Hyattsville) Sun, Apr 10, 2016 Michael Wilpers One kestrel flying back and forth between two of the powerline towers closest to 16th Place (where it was also seen last year). It perched high up on tower for a couple minutes, the flew to the other one briefly, then back to the first. At one point, it chased away another bird, possibly one of the starlings also hanging out on the towers. If it breeds, this will be the third year in a row for this species which was not reported to nest in Sligo in a report of about ten years ago. File Photo
Tiny, immature leaves just emerged from many woody plants, plus flower buds on Mayapple and Tulip-tree and Star Chickweed, Bloodroot, and Spring Beauty in flower Lower Long Branch (downstream from Carroll Ave.) and Sligo between NH Ave and Maple Mon, Apr 4, 2016 Michael Wilpers Endearing and picturesque little leaves of Greenbrier, Pignut Hickory, American Elm, Ironwood (Carpinus), Arrowwood, Dogwood, Silver Maple, and Box-elder. Of all the many Spring Beauties I saw, only one batch had its blossoms open in the cool, drizzly weather.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Pair of yellow-crowned night herons Sligo park, on a tree, between Piney Branch and Wayne Ave, by the tennis courts Sat, Mar 26, 2016 Corinne Stephens possibly nesting
Photo from Apr 2015 sighting by John Abbott
Bald Eagle Jackson Avenue and Central Avenue in Takoma Park. 8:45am, Tue, Mar 29, 2016 Geoffrey Mason This is in the neighborhood between Sligo Creek and Long Branch. Photo from Nov 2013 sighting by Jonathan
groundhog top of the hill up from the path, upstream from Park Valley 3pm, Mon, Mar 28, 2016 Kit Gage The groundhog was just ambling along in broad daylight.
Wikipedia page
Bloodroot colony Sighted from the red-railed bridge over the Long Branch, between LB Library and Community Center Thu, Mar 24, 2016 Laura Mol A colony of ~100 Bloodroot stems in full flower, amid the woodland duff of White Oaks & etc, located between E/SE corner of library parking lot and footings of bridge to Community Center. Fine view from N side of bridge before it crosses the Long Branch. At 1P, sunny and hot.
Photo of flower
Photo of locale
Wildflower info
Mystery duck - mallard? Sligo Creek upstream from USGS dam above Maple Ave 3pm, Sun, Mar 20, 2016 Kit Gage A male and a female mallard, and a third darker male duck with green head, white under beak and dark body - a cross or yearling mallard?
Photo by Kit Gage
Velvet Mite, bright red Upland woods, upstream from Dennis Ave 2pm, Tue, Mar 15, 2016 Laura Mol Very small (~1/16 inch) but the color is attention-snagging. Three individuals seen in different locations, all amid oak-leaf duff. Presumably Trombidiidae family. Common in soil and on moss per Marshall; "Adults eat insect eggs; larvae are parasites on insect eggs."
Outside temperature was ~60°F. More Info
BugGuide image
A pair of Yellow-crowned Night-Herons Below University Blvd. Downstream from the steps that descend to the park from Tenbrook Drive. In a big tree (a Southern Red Oak) between Sligo Creek Parkway and the creek. Sun, Mar 13, 2016 Susan Hunt One was sitting on the nest they used last year, one sitting above it. This was reported on the MDBirding listserve on March 11 by another birder.
File Photo
Wood Duck and Mallard Duck pairs Upstream from the stone bridge at Park Valley Rd Early March 2016 Kit Gage Mallards are commonly seen in this stretch, but not Wood ducks, so it's lovely to see them hanging out and eating here, and presumably back for the season.
Photo by Kit Gage
Eastern Phoebe calling Along the Sligo Creek paved path, just below the first bridge upstream of the Sligo-Dennis Community Building Mon, Feb 29, 2016 Susan Hunt It was nice to hear this bird calling -- a sign of early spring, despite the promise of snow to finish the week.
Listen to the Eastern Phoebe
Red Fox with mange Sligo Woods area (north of Dennis Avenue, east of Sligo) 9:15am, Mon, Feb 29, 2016 Laura Mol Trotting between houses, headed W across Tenbrook Drive and toward/into Sligo Creek Park, this rather large Red Fox was remarkable for a tail absent of fur except for its bushy tip. Surely this is sarcoptic mange.
Read Patterson Clarke article in "Urban Jungle".
Song Sparrows singing Sligo Woods area (Tenbrook Drive, north of Dennis Avenue) Week of Feb 22, 2016 Susan Hunt The Northern Cardinals have been singing quite a while, but I only just started to hear Song Sparrows singing this week, and then they all seemed to be singing at once. (Song starts with three or four bright clear notes, followed by buzzy trills.)
Great Blue Heron Stormwater ponds just downstream from the Beltway, on the west bank of the pond closest to the Parkway Sat, Feb 20, 2016 Michael Wilpers For what it's worth, this bird looked a little ratty, maybe a result of changing feathers from winter to breeding plumage. It stood motionless, facing the water, for a few minutes, then wandered west toward the other pond.
immature sharp shin hawk top of sycamore tree in the playground between Colesville Rd. and Three Oaks Drive 2:30pm, Wed, Feb 17, 2016 Katherine Payne Paused a few minutes before flying east into the neighborhood trees.
File Photo
Beaver Activity Feb 4, 2016 James Anderson
Photo 1 by James Anderson
Photo 2 by James Anderson
Eastern Towhee (bird) My backyard on the edge of Section 4 of Sligo Creek between Wayne Ave and Piney Branch. We live on Fleetwood Terrace. Tue, Feb 2, 2016 James Anderson I saw the eastern towhee in my backyard and in the Park for a couple of days. Then it disappeared.
Photo 1 by James Anderson
Photo 2 by James Anderson
Barred Owls hooting, Cooper's Hawk darting Near the corner of Maplewood and Flower, on the Long Branch side Feb 2 & 3, 2016 Michael Wilpers Two Barred Owls were hooting back-and-forth between 11:00 pm nd midnight, with their songs often overlapping. The next morning, a very agile Cooper's Hawk repeatedly chased crows from a tree, demonstrating its amazing ability to change directions quickly and often, like a much smaller bird.
Barred Owl File Photo
Cooper's Hawk File Photo
Mature Bald Eagle Backyard of
728 Guilford Court
1pm, Sun, December 27, 2015 Ross Campbell Mature bald eagle flew north into the backyard. It landed in a tulip poplar for a moment, then flew off with what appeared to be a squirrel in its talons.
Black Raspberry Just upstream from stone bridge of Park Valley Rd, btw guard-rail and creek, and just downstream from the second bridge further upstream from Park Valley Sat, January 16, 2016 Michael Wilpers This native raspberry was considered "rare" in the 2003 inventory of Sligo plants, and not found in this section of the park (between Maple and Piney Branch). The white, powdery "bloom" on red thorny stems is unmistakable.
Photo 1 by Michael Wilpers
Photo 2 by Michael Wilpers
Mahonia in bloom Just off the Sligo Creek Trail upstream from Dennis Ave, about 250 feet south of the paved trail which connects to the back of Sligo Middle School Wed, December 30, 2015 Bob Cantor Standing nearly 5 feet tall, this really stands out when it's blooming in late December
Photo by Bob Cantor
This plant Mahonia aquifolium (Oregon grape-holly) is native to the North American West, but has been classified as an invasive exotic species in some eastern areas.
Read the Wikipedia page
Bald Eagle It wasn't actually in Sligo Creek. But unusual to see in our area! On the Northwest Branch trail upstream of the Lamberton Drive entrance. On a map, Viewcrest Terrace points to the spot. 3:15pm, Fri, December 11, 2015 Leah Haygood Didn't have my binocs, but I also didn't need them to ID a giant, heavy-bodied brown-black raptor with a pure white tail. I saw it flying downstream, then back upstream after some crows seemed to notice it.
Great Horned Owl On Hilltop Road near the corner of Maple Ave, just across the street from Sligo Creek and the small parking area there Early twilight on Sunday, December 6, 2015 Melissa During a jog, we heard a low sounding hoot. We stopped and heard the hoot three more times. When we heard it for the fourth time we spotted the owl as it took off from a branch and flew lower to the ground. The owl was in a tree of a private residential lot just across the street from Sligo Creek. File Photo
Many Water Pepper (Common Smartweed) blooming as well as two Panicled Asters Banks of the stormwater ponds in Kemp Mill Mon, Nov 23, 2015 Michael Wilpers Although abundant around these ponds, the Water Pepper (Persica hydropiper, formerly Polygonum hydropiper) is not listed in the 2003 native plant inventory, probably because authorities are not in agreement as to whether it's native or not. Most of the plants were withered, but about 10 percent were in flower. The two asters were on the eastern-most bank, in direct, warm sunlight most of the day, and protected from wind, perhaps accounting for their flowering at this date, about a month later than usual.
Photos by Michael Wilpers
Gorgeous red fall colors of greenbrier The Pepco powerline corridor adjacent to Sligo Sat, Oct 31, 2015 Michael Wilpers The various shades and patterns of red on these vine and shrub leaves are a sight to behold, especially against a green backdrop. They certainly compete for beauty with the better-appreciated maples, hickories, and oaks
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Maryland Golden-aster and Tickseed Sunflower still in bloom Pepco powerline corridor alongside Sligo Creek Sat, Oct 31, 2015 Michael Wilpers A single blossom of Maryland Golden-aster jumped out against the gray back-drop of other stems long gone to seed. The beautiful yellow of Tickseed Sunflower provided another dramatic break from the prevailing background colors.
Golden-aster Photo by Michael Wilpers
Tickseed Sunflower Photo by Michael Wilpers
Wilson's Snipe Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds 10:20am, Fri, Oct 23, 2015 Bob Cantor Have only seen one of these in our area once before, during migration season. This one was out on the mudflat at the start of the first pond.
Photo by Bob Cantor
Purple Gerardia, Bur-marigold in flower Banks of Kemp Mill stormwater ponds Sun, Oct 11, 2015 Michael Wilpers iThere were at least a half-dozen clumps of the beautiful gerardia (Agalinis purpurea, aka Purple False Foxglove) in flower on the east bank of the pond closest to the trail. Just north of the ponds, I found a single Bur-marigold. This little plant (normally 4-6 feet tall) was severely deer-browsed, as were all the many asters, which had been reduced to only a few inches high rather than their usual 2-3-foot height.
Purple Gerardia by Michael Wilpers
Bur-marigold by Michael Wilpers
Milkweed Bugs Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds Mon, Oct 5, 2015 Bob Cantor These have been here all summer but this is the first time I've gotten a good picture of them. There aren't any adults in this shot, but it does show nymphs at various stages of development.
Photo by Bob Cantor
Nodding Smartweed and Turtlehead in flower Nodding Smartweed on the south edge of the Beltway at the west side of the trail. Turtlehead was along the trail's edge between Forest Glen and Dennis Mon, Sep 28, 2015 Michael Wilpers The Nodding Smartweed was at least four feet tall, with thick stems and huge joints covered by long, transparent sheaths. Some guides call it native, some not. I'd never seen it before. The Turtlehead has been blooming in this one spot for years.
Smartweed Photo by Michael Wilpers
Turtlehead Photo by Michael Wilpers
Carolina Saddlebags Dragonfly, Carolina Saddlebags, Dragonfly & other insects Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds 2pm, Mon, Sep 14, 2015 Bob Cantor The area near the Dennis Avenue Bridge has dragonflies and butterflies everywhere. Black Saddlebags Dragonflies are common, but this is the first time I've gotten a good look at a Saddlebag with a red tail, so I figure it must be the Carolina Saddlebags. Common Whitetail Dragonflies are even more common, so I'm including a picture of both male and female. Blue-winged Wasps are almost always here. While I'm at it, I'll throw in a picture of Milkweed Tussock Moth Caterpillars which I saw here in early August.
Photo Album by Bob Cantor
Great variety of flowers in bloom (and fruit) Kemp Mill and Dennis stormwater ponds Mon, Sep 7, 2015 Michael Wilpers The dry August and receding waters opened up a wide mudflat at the east bank of the Kemp Mill ponds, now populated by a low mat of False-pimpernel with a few Common Arrowhead. Mounds of various smartweed species form a rich palette of tones & textures next to Hysopp-leaved Boneset. Below the large berm, at the creek's edge a single large Green-headed Coneflower. Upstream, several Beefsteak Plant (a mint), profuse False-nettle, and, along the trail, Persimmon in fruit. At Dennis Ave, many Jerusalem Artichoke 8-feet tall on the berm and one Cocklebur in spiny seed.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Late-flowering Boneset in tremendous profusion, swarmed by pollinating insects Stormwater ponds at Dennis Ave. and in Kemp Mill Mon, Sep 7, 2015 Michael Wilpers Large displays of these brilliant white flowers (Eupatorium serotinum) just upstream from the Kemp Mill ponds and on the south side of the Dennis Ave ponds. In recent years, it's been Hyssop-leaved Boneset that most reliably proliferates in the late summer landscape at these ponds. Perhaps the very dry August gave this species the upper hand. Among the crowds of pollinators busy in the white flower heads were Pearl Crescent, Tiger Swallowtail, skippers, bumblebees, and Scoliid wasps.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Northern Water Snakes Just upstream from Flower Ave by the big bend in the creek 1:30pm, Sun, Sep 6, 2015 Frank McLean There were two. One about 3-4 foot long, reddish brown, swam towards me upstream as I was wading with my daughter, watching fish. Thankfully looked me over and turned back downstream and to the roadside bank. The second was almost immediately afterwards, same coloration, swimming downstream right towards where the first had gone. Kept to the roadside bank and tbe shadows.
2011 Photo by Don Olson
Elephant's foot in abundance; a single Indian Tobacco Long Branch, between Maplewood and Hudson Sun, Aug 23, 2015 Michael Wilpers I've never seen to many of these odd Aster-family flowers in Sligo/Long Branch. They seem to be everywhere this year, along trails and other edges. Saw a single plant of Indian Tobacco. Others flowering are Spotted Jewelweed (also highly abundant),Hoary Tick Trefoil, Jumpseed, Pokeweed, and Cespitose Smartweed.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Abudantly flowering Early Goldenrod, Dogbane, Self-heal, Winged Sumac, Hyssop-leaved Boneset, Purple Passion-flower, two sedges, and more Pepco powerline corridor between Sligo Creek and Riggs Road Sat, Aug 1, 2015 Michael Wilpers Most of the wildflowers were northeast of the ridge at 16th Place; among others, the white boneset and goldenrod makes a dramatic juxtaposition. SW of the ridge, Winged Sumac (now in flower) is ever more abundant, along with recurring Passion-flower and Hercules' Club along the NW edge. The ridge itself had strangely wet areas, where Straw-colored Flatsedge and Globe Flatsedge are growing (thanks to R. Simmons for ID), along with several smartweed species.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Monkey Flower On the floodplain of Long Branch, between Carroll and Maplewood, directly across from the foot bridge Mon, July 27, 2015 Michael Wilpers Also called Square-stemmed Monkey Flower and Allegheny Monkey Flower. There seemed to be just one individual plant. Nearby was a large colony of Orange Jewelweed. Monkey Flower was reported only above Forest Glen Red. in the 2003 inventory; later one plant was reported on the banks of the stormwater ponds along the southern edge of the Beltway.
Photo by Michael Wilpers
A fox or coyote Sunnyside and Parkside roads- just up from Sligo Creek Park 6:45pm, Thu, July 9, 2015 George Neighbors Seems too big to be a fox yet too small to be a full coyote
Photo by George Neighbors
Ramp Flowers Section 4 - Wayne to Piney Branch Thu, July 9, 2015 Jim Anderson Ramps are well-known in the Appalachians as a sign of spring. When their broad green leaves emerge in April, there are ramp festivals throughout the region, as people cook up the roots and leaves. By early June, the leaves have completely disappeared -- they can't photosynthesize much once the trees block their light. But right around now, where the leaves once were, you'll see a single stalk (about 6-8 inches tall) with a pompom of white flowers on top.
Photo 1 by Jim Anderson
Photo 2 by Jim Anderson
Black-crowned night heron By Sligo Creek, 1/8th mile upstream from Colesville Road Sun, June 28, 2015 Stuart Armstrong It was watching the high water on Sligo Creek, after another big storm.
Photo by Stuart Armstrong
Does with Fawns Sligo Creek Trail, between Nicholas Drive foot-bridge (North of University) and Orebaugh Avenue 8:15am, Fri, July 3, 2015 Bob Cantor Saw 3 does with a total of 4 fawns along this section of trail. Later in the day I saw another doe with a fawn at the Wheaton Branch stormwater ponds.
Photo by Bob Cantor
Turkey Along the path between Windham Lane and the bridge to Sligo Middle School (just upstream from Dennis Ave) 1pm, Fri, June 18, 2015 Tani Saw it first, looked like a female according to web photos I was just looking at. Then it started making all kinds of crazy sounds before sticking with a steady squak. I don't think it liked me standing around.
Veery singing Kemp Mill woodlands Sat, June 6, 2015 Laura Mol Walking north from the *Friends of Sligo Creek* kiosk (= right onto the Sligo Park trail from the shopping-center parking lot) in deep dusk, ~8:45P, admiring the twinkling of fireflies off in the woods and listening to the racket of Grey Tree-Frogs calling--suddenly the distinctive song of the Veery floated down from trees very near the path. Cornell's "All About Birds" says: "the song pitch, and resonates as if whirling around inside a metal pipe." Listen to the veery singing.
Web Photo
Harvestman spider 39.003204, -77.014156
By the parking lot just downstream of where 3 Oaks Drive comes into Sligo Creek Parkway (between Colesville Road and Wayne Avenue).
5:17pm, Mon, June 1, 2015 Hugh Rand This harvestman was sitting quietly on the foliage when I walked by. It was entertaining to have it explore my finger with its second (longest) pair of legs.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Snapping turtle--very large Under the foot bridge just upstream from Park Valley Road (Between Piney Branch Rd and Maple Ave) Wed, May 27, 2015 Cate Timmerman Frezza Lovely old turtle as big as a hubcap sunning itself on a log.
Photo by Cate Timmerman Frezza
Northern water snake West side of the creek, on the paved path just north of the footbridge from the parking area across from Dallas Avenue/M-NCPPC HQ 10am, Sun, May 31, 2015 Stuart Kern The snake was 2.5-3 feet long, 2" in diameter. It lay in the path eating what look liked a bird. All I could see was the bird's tail. At first I thought the snake was dead, but then I realized it was slowly swallowing. After a few minutes it took off very quickly into the creek.
2010 Photo by Don Olson
Male Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly 39.004925, -77.016352
Along the creek. A bit upstream (~100m) of where 3 Oaks Drive meets Sligo Creek Parkway. (Between Colesville Road and Wayne Avenue.)
4:39 pm, Thu, May 28, 2015 Hugh Rand He was resting on the vegetation right along the creek. More skittish than the last two (females) I have gotten pictures of. Took a bit of care to get a decent photograph. But it was worth it - a very pretty iridescent green.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Redbud Trees with Many Seed Pods 39.004825, -77.016625
Right across the park from where Pershing Drive ends at the park (Between Wayne Avenue and Colesville Road)
4:43 pm, Wed, May 27, 2015 Hugh Rand There are (at least) two medium-sized redbud trees here of about the same size. Not 100% sure if they are the native species, a cultivar, or a foreign import. They seem closest to the native descriptions, but I want to watch through a year or so.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Eastern Cottontail Rabbit 39.000150, -77.011172
Sligo Cabin Neighborhood Park (Just upstream from Wayne Avenue)
6:21 am, Tue, May 26, 2015 Hugh Rand Photo by Hugh Rand
Female Wood Duck with chicks, Night-Heron, Barn Swallow, leaf-roller insect nest, milkweed, cranesbill, fleabane, cow's vetch, hop clover Small stormwater ponds along south edge of the Beltway and adjacent meadow dusk, Mon, May 25, 2015 Michael Wilpers Only two tiny chicks stuck close by the mother Wood Duck along the west bank of the pond before they hustled into the underbrush. The Black-crowned Night-Heron stuck its half-open beak into the water where it subtly moved the beak for a minute or so. Common milkweed has spread considerably since last year with new reduced mowing schedule, augmented by new ones planted by Parks. Only one Carolina cranesbill was seen (fruit and flower both visible in photo), with a nice patch of common fleabane and scattered cow's vetch and hop clover.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Probable Gray Catbird Nest 39.000203, -77.011308
Sligo Cabin Neighborhood Park (Just north of where Wayne Avenue Crosses Sligo Creek)
10:28 am, Mon, May 25, 2015 Hugh Rand There was an adult gray catbird that appeared to be leaving the nest just as I was looking in the bushes. It is very well hidden, about 2 meters into a multi-species clump of bushes. About a meter or so off of the ground. You can tell this catbird favors modern architecture by the use of one or more plastic bags in the construction. If you squint at the picture you may be able to imagine a dark beak poking up to the left and a bit of an eye peering at you. Looks to be pretty well grown. I suspect there is also a robin nest in this clump of bushes as well by the behavior of a robin I have seen around (which was why I was peering into the bush in the first place).
Photo by Hugh Rand
Female Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly 39.000203, -77.011308
Sligo Cabin Neighborhood Park (Just north of where Wayne Avenue Crosses Sligo Creek)
10:26 am, Mon, May 25, 2015 Hugh Rand About a half meter off the ground resting on the vegetation next to an open field. Check out the spines on the legs.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron 39.007007, -77.013651
Seven Oaks Neighborhood Park
8:10 am, Sun, May 24, 2015 Hugh Rand Interesting what you see up on electrical poles. Just flew in as I was walking through the park. I wonder if my presence diverted him/her from landing in the grass to hunt for earthworms. This may very well have been the same individual that I saw earlier by the creek.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Lone Deer 39.000212, -77.010994
In the grassy area on the right bank upstream from Wayne Ave
7:37 am, Sun, May 24, 2015 Hugh Rand Very pretty animal. I wonder if this is the mother I saw with a fawn a couple of days ago in the same area? If so, I wonder where the little one is hidden?
Photo by Hugh Rand
Eastern Cottontail Rabbit 39.002428, -77.013468
Just across Sligo Creek from where Schuyler Road comes into Sligo Creek Parkway. (Between Wayne Avenue and Colesville Road.)
7:30 am, Sun, May 24, 2015 Hugh Rand Maybe if I am really quiet and don't move, he won't notice me.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron 39.005629, -77.017116
Very close to the footbridge that crosses Sligo Creek near Bennington Lane. (Between Colsville Road and Wayne Avenue.)
7:11 am, Sun, May 24, 2015 Hugh Rand Earthworms for breakfast
Photo by Hugh Rand
Starling Nest 39.005629, -77.017116
Very close to the footbridge that crosses Sligo Creek near Bennington Lane. (Between Colsville Road and Wayne Avenue.)
6:59 am, Sun, May 24, 2015 Hugh Rand At least two nestlings that seemed very eager for more breakfast.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Heron, night-heron, iris, dragonflies, goose Little stormwater ponds on the south edge of the Beltway, between the Parkway and the creek Sat, May 23, 2015 Michael Wilpers The Great Blue Heron flew in over my head from the south and landed on the north edge of the ponds. It then walked a few steps toward a Canada Goose, which seemed to be sitting on a nest and didn't budge. A Black-crowned Night-Heron flushed from the eastern bank of the ponds as I approached to photograph the Greater blue-flag irises. A large headed/thoraxed dragonfly with a narrow abdomen patrolled a 10-foot-wide stretch of bank.
Photo by Michael Wilpers
Deer Antler Rub 39.005177, -77.016853
Across the park from Bennington Drive in the woods. (Between Wayne Avenue and Colesville Road.)
9:45am, Sat, May 23, 2015 Hugh Rand Probably from last fall. Seemed to be a little bit out of the way for a rub. I will be interested to see what happens in this spot in the fall.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron 39.005340, -77.017140
In the park where Bennington Lane and Bennington Drive meet. (Between Wayne Avenue and Colesville Road.)
8:55 am, Sat, May 23, 2015 Hugh Rand Fairly tolerant of people, so you can get pretty close (less than 10m) and it will continue hunting for things to eat in the grass. Mostly seemed to be getting earthworms.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Female Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly 39.004479, -77.016252
Across the park from where Greenbrier Drive ends at the park by Sligo Creek. (Between Wayne Avenue and Colesville Road.)
5:10pm, Fri, May 22, 2015 Hugh Rand This damselfly was resting on the low growing vegetation (mostly Virginia Creeper) between the woods and the open field. She was a bit skittish about my presence at first, but after a bit was fairly tolerant.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Beaver 39.025431, -77.038262
Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds
7:45am, Fri, May 22, 2015 Bob Cantor Swimming around in pond #1
Photo by Bob Cantor
Young Fawn 39.001673, -77.012009
In the creek along the playfield next to Silver Spring International Middle School. (Just upstream from Wayne Avenue.)
5:11pm, Thu, May 21, 2015 Hugh Rand Very cute and still wobbly on his/her feet. Managed to do a flip into the creek from the bank at one point, and it seems that young fawns can swim somewhat. Not sure why mom had dragged this one into the stream, other than that there is not much cover along this stretch of the creek.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron Tracks 38.999776, -77.010976
In the sand under the bridge where Wayne Avenue crosses over Sligo Creek.
5:01 pm, Thu, May 21, 2015 Hugh Rand I did not get to see these tracks made, but I am pretty sure this is who has been hunting the stream edge near the bridge. The tracks have the right morphology for a heron and are about the right size for a Yellow-Crowned Night Heron. There were a good number of tracks, so I think this is currently a common hunting spot. The picture submitted is a left foot.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Multiflora Rose in Flower 39.002178, -77.012990
Across the creek from where Schuyler Road hits Sligo Creek Parkway and 20 meters downstream - not too far upstream from Wayne Avenue
6:19 am, Wed, May 20, 2015 Hugh Rand Lots of Multiflora Rose coming into flower along this section of the trail. There are a lot of them just along the path where they get a good bit of sun. They seem to be competing well here. In nearby areas with more shade, some of the other non-native invasives (e.g., Amur Honeysuckle) seem to have the upper hand.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Tulip Tree flower 39.003858, -77.015796
Across the creek from where 3 Oaks Drive runs into Sligo Creek Parkway. (Between Wayne Avenue and Colesville Road.)
5pm, Tue, May 19, 2015 Hugh Rand Many of the Tulip Tree flowers are starting to fall apart and litter the paths in this area. Occasionally there will be a complete flower that makes its way to the ground. This one was on the end of a branch and included a few leaves. Not clear what broke it off. Maybe insect damage? Did not look cut by a squirrel.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Blue Jay 39.003858, -77.015694
Across the creek from where Three Oaks Drive comes into Sligo Creek Parkway. (Between Colesville Road and Wayne Avenue.)
5:48pm, Mon, May 18, 2015 Hugh Rand Most obvious at first by the usual Blue Jay "jeer." This one called from a perch at the side of the creek for a while, then flew to the other side of the creek for a drink and a bath. Never really clear what the calls were about.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Northern water snake Sunning itself on a rock in the middle of Sligo Creek, a little bit downstream from Colesville Road noon, Mon, May 18, 2015 Stuart Armstrong I see these snakes from time to time, generally swimming.
Photo by Stuart Armstrong
May 2010 Photo by Don Olson
Box turtle, jaywalking Sligo Creek Parkway downstream from Wayne Avenue Sun, May 17, 2015 Laura Mol This Eastern Box Turtle, with its high-domed shell, was progressing westward across the Parkway at 7:10A, headed toward the streamside greenery (I imagine), just to the south of Wayne Avenue. I guarded its passage with my car and, as we're told to do, moved it off the road and in the direction it was headed. Once I moved my car off the road, I went back to look more closely: by its concave lower shell, it was a male, confirmed by his red-orangy eyes and vividly orange-patterned forelegs
(much like this 2009 Flickr photo by Alan Cressler).
Dispersing Eastern Tent Caterpillar 38.999112, -77.010808
Just downstream of Wayne Avenue
4:57pm, Fri, May 15, 2015 Hugh Rand There are a fair number of "tents" in the various trees in the area, and it looks like at least some have matured to the stage where they are dispersing to pupate.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Gray Catbird Singing at Dusk 39.001165, -77.011662
Just upstream of Sligo Cabin Neighborhood Park at Wayne Avenue & the creek
8:10pm, Thu, May 14, 2015 Hugh Rand Not hidden inside a bush for a change, so I could get a clear picture. Except for the fact that it was getting dark, so conditions were not completely ideal. Sounded a bit like he was borrowing material from the Robin another 10 meters up the trail.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Black Locust Tree in Flower 39.000104, -77.010994
Just upstream from Wayne Avenue along the right bank of Sligo Creek
6:25am, Wed, May 13, 2015 Hugh Rand Probably a day or two past their prime, but very pretty. Nice to finally find a tree with flowers near the ground so I could get a good picture. Reasonably tasty, though not quite as good as some of the "wild edibles" books make it.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Flowering Jack-in-the-Pulpit 39.021611, -77.033440
On the left bank of Wheaton Branch where Cody Drive dead ends at the park. Along the side of the road built with wood chips. (between Dennis Avenue and Forest Glen Road.)
5:43pm, Tue, May 12, 2015 Hugh Rand There were a number of Jack-in-the-Pulpits trying to come back up through the road of wood-chips that was built here. This one was close to the side of the road and was having the best time of it.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Canada Goose Nest with Six Eggs 39.025577, -77.038943
Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds
4:31pm, Tue, May 12, 2015 Hugh Rand Looks like the nest Bob Cantor reported on 29 April is still doing well. There appear to be six eggs in it. After some initial threatening by Mom and Data when I walked by, Mom became sufficiently relaxed to turn the eggs, which was fun to see.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Amur Honeysuckle in Full Flower 39.000200, -77.011255
Just upstream from Wayne Avenue near Sligo Creek Trail
6:25am, Tue, May 12, 2015 Hugh Rand The Amur Honeysuckle are about in full flower now. They are very common along this stretch of the creek, both along the path and off in the woods.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Flowering Black Cherry 39.004657, -77.016633
Across the park from where Pershing Drive "T"s into Bennington Drive. (Between Colesville Road and Wayne Avenue.)
4:58pm, Mon, May 11, 2015 Hugh Rand Petals are starting to fall, but still a very pretty show. This tree looks to be about 15 years old, and is one of a handfull of Black Cherries of roughly this age in the woods around this park.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly Just south of the parking lot along Sligo Creek Parkway that is to the upstream from 3 Oaks Drive. (Between Colesville Road and Wayne Avenue.) 12 noon, Sun, May 10, 2015 Hugh Rand Good exercise in stalking close enough to get a decent picture.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Deer scat and browse Five meters east of where Sligo Creek Parkway and Schuyler Road join. (Between Wayne Ave. and Colesville Rd.) 3:09pm, Sat, May 9, 2015 Hugh Rand Reasonably fresh - maybe two hours old (warm, sunny day)? There were still flies around the scat and some of the browse was not brown and fully dried out yet.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Three Deer (two male, one female) On the right bank of the creek about halfway between Wayne Ave and Piney Branch Road 4:50pm, Fri, May 8, 2015 Hugh Rand The three deer (one female and two males with ~4cm antlers) were busy browsing on a fair variety of the vegetation in this area. Best I could tell, they fed on Mayapple, Spice bush, and Amur Honeysuckle(?). At two different times, one or the other of the males did a front-foot stomp to see if they could get me to startle/move and then went back to browsing.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Male Red-bellied Woodpecker Just across Sligo Creek Trail from the southeast corner of the track by the Silver Spring International Middle School. (upstream from Wayne Avenue) 5:30pm, Thu, May 7, 2015 Hugh Rand He spent a good 3-4 minutes high overhead, exploring a dead branch for insects.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Young Pawpaw tree 35 meters northwest of where the footbrige crosses Sligo Creek at Schuyler Road. On the right bank of the creek, right next to the footpath. (Between Colesville Rd and Wayne Ave) 6:16pm, Wed, May 6, 2015 Hugh Rand The only Pawpaw tree I have seen along the creek in this area. I hope it grows up.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Flowering European Horse-Chestnut Sligo Creek from Schuyler Road and about 25 meters south along the trail (between Colesville Rd and Wayne Ave) 4:12pm, Tue, May 5, 2015 Hugh Rand There are a number of European Horse-Chestnuts along this stretch of the creek. Most (and maybe all) of them are still a long ways from being full-sized.
Photo by Hugh Rand
Mayapple flower Across the creek and about 20 meters south from 3 Oaks Drive (midway between Colesville Rd and Wayne Ave) 4:08pm, Mon, May 4, 2015 Hugh Rand Interesting how few flowers there are among the many stems in this area
Photo by Hugh Rand
Canada Goose nest with eggs Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds 10am, Mon, Apr 29, 2015 Bob Cantor The nest is unfortunately only about 1 foot off the trail on the narrow berm between the first two ponds, so there isn't much room to get around it. Be prepared to deal with some angry geese if you get too close.
Photo 1 by Bob Cantor
Photo 2 by Bob Cantor
Yellow-crowned Night Heron In the creek between Dallas Avenue and the bridge at the south end of the soccer fields - between Colesville Rd and the Beltway 8:30am, Mon, Apr 27, 2015 Bob Cantor Photo by Bob Cantor
Eastern Red-backed Salamander My back yard under a concrete walking stone. We back up to Sligo Creek Park off Fleetwood Terrace. Sun, Apr 5, 2015 James Anderson We found 6 of them under different stones. Most were the gray or black, one had the red strip down its back. I have found these in different parts of my yard when digging for the past few years. File Photo
Barred Owl outside my back door along the Wheaton Branch Spur Tue, Apr 21, 2015 Michael Pollock Photo by Michael Pollock
Yellow Crowned Night Heron Just downstream from University Blvd Tue, Apr 21, 2015 Michael Pollock Photo by Michael Pollock
Trout Lilies Just south of Dennis Avenue Apr 20, 2015 Bob Cantor Several of these blooming just off the Sligo Creek Trail on the creek side.
File Photo by Michael Wilpers
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron pair nesting in front of the tennis courts just upstream from Piney Branch Road Apr 8-15, 2015 Suzanne I actually didn't know what they were and when I tried to identify them at home, the closest I got was a blue heron. Thank you for helping me identify them.
File Photo
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron Along the parkway across the creek from Windham (just downstream from Univ Blvd) 11:45am, Sun, Apr 12, 2015 John Abbott They're Back! I spotted one (probably Dad) on the nest this Sunday (the same nest as last year). I was about to leave when Mom popped her head up from the nest and looked around.
Photo by John Abbott
Yellow-crowned Night-Herons on the nest In a tree by the Parkway, downstream from where Windham dead ends at the paved trail. (just downstream from Univ Blvd) 5pm, Thu, Apr 9, 2015 Susan Hunt Both herons were on or next to what appears to be the same nest they used last year.
File Photo
Opossum Little Eastern Avenue between Walnut Avenue and the "paper" First street between 6737 and 6741 Eastern Avenues, DC midnight, mid-March 2015 Jean Capps My husband saw the possum when our cat raised a ruckus when she saw it going between the two houses (our and our next door neighbor). He said it was over 2 feet long and quite large.
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron On the open grassy area between the neighborhood back yards and the paved path, just downstream from where Windham dead ends and connects with the paved path (just downstream from University Blvd) 8:30am, Fri, Apr 3, 2015 Susan Hunt Last year the herons had a nest near today's sighting - in addition to the one usually seen further downstream (at Wayne) - so I have been looking for them and hoping they would nest here again. This morning two joggers approached me to ask me what the bird on the grassy field was. They thought it was "some kind of heron" and they were right! Another walker (plus his friendly dog) and I admired it for a while until it flew off in the direction of the trees where the heron nested last year.
2013 Photo by Lenore Boulet
Red Shouldered Hawk pair Upstream from Park Valley Bridge 4:15pm, Wed, Apr 1, 2015 Kit Gage One hawk was sitting on the nest, presumably on eggs. They were seen mating a couple weeks ago. The second hawk was about 100 feet away on a low tree branch looking for food. This is the second year for the hawks at this location.
Photo by Kit Gage
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron Perched on a branch by the creek, just downstream from the Carroll Ave bridge 6:50pm, Thu, Mar 26, 2015 Laura Otolski The heron was perched on a branch across the creek. A dozen trail walkers of all ages stopped to admire it, pointing it out to each other. I was able to identify it on sight because I'd seen one a few years ago, standing in the creek, near Wayne Ave.
2013 Photo by Lenore Boulet
Nip twigs and bud scales from squirrels feeding on American Elm buds 30 feet downstream from the footbridge crossing Sligo near the south end of the soccer fields (along the west bank just inside the Beltway) Mon, Mar 9, 2015 Michael Wilpers Lots of little brown bud-scales were sprinkled liberally across the snow beneath a mature elm, along with a scattering of 2" to 6" twigs, each showing a 45-degree-angled cut at the base typical of squirrels feeding. High above, three squirrels scurried about cutting twigs, eating swollen buds, and dropping twigs to the ground.
Album of Photos by Michael Wilpers
Dozens of bees on hundreds of Crocuses Long Branch between Patterson Ct. and Carroll Ave. 3pm, Sun, Mar 8, 2015 Michael Wilpers The bees moved busily among the blanket of Crocuses, occasionally landing and collectively making a faint but audible buzz. Some had fat pollen sacks under their legs for delivery to eggs or larvae in their underground nests. These may be Mining Bees (genus Andrena), as they are known to emerge in late winter (while snow is still on the ground) and they were abundant in March in the Pepco corridor along Sligo in in our survey of 2013. (Don't know if they overwintered as adults or matured from eggs or larvae while under snow.)
Album of Photos by Michael Wilpers
Barred Owl vocalizing Half-block from Long Branch Park, on Maplewood Ave Thu, Mar 5, 2015 Michael Wilpers The owl started singing about 5:30 pm, just after my neighbor let her dog into their back yard. The Lab's barking was of a similar vocal range and tone-quality to the owl's, and he may have stimulated the bird's song.
Barred Owl Amazing Vocals
Red Fox Dryden St and Gilmoure Dr, Silver Spring, MD 3am, Mon, Mar 2, 2015 Heather Is it red fox mating season? We have heard them two nights in the past week. My cats go crazy!
Sapsucker gleaning, hawk alighting, Mourning Dove singing In the Park and neighborhoods between the Flower Avenue playground and Maple/Maplewood Ave Feb 17&18, 2015 Michael Wilpers Along the steep slope upstream from the playground, a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker made its presence known by loud "mewing" sounds and moved up and down the lower trunk of a mature hickory(a few feet from me), picking away at the bark and apparently finding over-wintering insect food (eggs, larvae, adults?) despite the freezing temps. On Glenside, a Mourning Dove sang its song once and stopped (the first one I've heard this year). The hawk (Red-tailed?) landed on a branch about 25 feet up near my bus stop on Flower.
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker web page
Deer antlers dropped in winter Upstream from Park Valley Rd Sat, Feb 14, 2015 Kit Gage It is typical this time of year for most bucks to lose their antlers. These antlers seem a bit small, indicating perhaps that the deer were not well fed. Six to eight point antler bones would be expected. Deer lose antlers one at a time. These were found several hundred feet away from each other in the forest duff, and are both right antlers
Photo by Kit Gage
Saplings gnawed by beaver On west side of bridge connecting Crosby Rd and football fields, parkway and golf course - just inside the Beltway Wed, Feb 4, 2015 Ned Greeley Gnawing occurred on at least 2 different occasions.
Album of Photos by Ned Greeley
Giant wild grape vine Just downstream from Dennis Ave, between the paved path and the creek Thu, Feb 5, 2015 Michael Wilpers The huge vine ascends vertically alongside and parallel to a River Birch of similar thickness, so it could easily be taken as a tree upon casual viewing. It emerges from the soil behind a Tulip Tree and extends up 25 feet unattached, before it threads through a fork in the birch, over to a Red Maple, and on up to the canopy. Approximately 15 inches in circumference, 7 inches in diameter. Let's pray no one cuts it down thinking it's an invasive!
Album of Photos by Michael Wilpers
Several Eastern Bluebirds At the end of Orebaugh Ave. in the Sligo Headwaters section of the park 1:30pm, Wed, Feb 4, 2015 Leah Haygood At least 3. In the past, I've seen a pair, most often near the path to the Kemp Mill Shopping Center. The fact that there were more than two in a group makes me think they may be breeding successfully. I never used to see them in this part of Sligo Creek ParkAt least 3. In the past, I've seen a pair, most often near the path to the Kemp Mill Shopping Center. The fact that there were more than two in a group makes me think they may be breeding successfully. I never used to see them in this part of Sligo Creek Park.
Web Photo