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
Bald Eagle Near the intersection of Domer and Flower Aves. Fri, Oct 6, 2017, 1pm Holly McClain Flying low, circling over Flower & Domer Aves.

Muscovy Duck By bridge near first playground upstream from Colesville Road Sat, Sept 23, 2017, 6:30pm Stuart Armstrong This one is different from the previous photos posted.

Photo by Stuart Armstrong

Ring Neck Snake Edge of Sligo Creek foot/bicycle path, ~100 yards from Holy Cross Hospital Sat, Sept 23, 2017, 5:30pm Alan Gerstle Don't have a photo. Snake was about 18" long, no more than one inch in circumferance

Groundhog

(i.e., woodchuck)

100 feet downstream from University Blvd Sat, Sept 23, 2017, 5:15pm Dan Treadwell It was sitting out about 5 feet from the shoulder of road and I went right by it on my bicycle.
I circled back to get a picture and it ran over to a nearby tree.

Photo by Dan Treadwell

Common Yellowthroat Warbler Near Wayne Ave & Sligo Creek Pkwy Wed, Sept 20, 2017, ~9:30am Barbara Neu Lovely, friendly group of four birds!

Baby Black Rat Snake Inside my house on Parkside Road Tues, Sept 19, 2017, 5am Mike Livingston Found a surprise guest on the bathroom counter this morning: a live gray reticulated snake approx. 8" long and not much more than 1/4" diameter. Googled images of babies of several local snake species and it seems to have been a baby rat snake. Sorry no pictures, but I wanted to move it outside before it disappeared into some crack or drain.

Wood Ducks and Snapping Turtle Stormwater Pond Along Sligo Creek just south of Beltway overpass Fri, Sept 15, 2017, 9:45am Dan Treadwell Male and Female Wood Duck, three ducklings, plus a Snapping Turtle

Photo of Female Wood Duck by Dan Treadwell
Photo of Female Wood Duck and Snapping Turtle by Dan Treadwell
Photo of Male Wood Duck by Dan Treadwell
Photo of Wood Ducks and Snapping Turtle by Dan Treadwell

Belted Kingfisher Stormwater Pond Along Sligo Creek just south of Beltway overpass Mon, Sept 4, 2017, 9:45am Dan Treadwell I've seen this bird several times, but it doesn't hang around long enough to get a very good picture.

Representative shot from the Audubon Society

Luna Moth Sligo Creek Bike Path near soccer field below Colt Terrace Mon, Aug 28, 2017, 1pm Dan Treadwell Moth was laying in bicycle path on the asphalt. Large; about 5 inches across. Alive, but barely moving.

Photo by Dan Treadwell

Muscovy Duck 3rd parking lot from Colesville Road heading towards Wayne Ave. Tue, Aug 15, 2017, 7:45pm Liz M This is the second time I've seen this very large duck. I have no idea what it is. It's brown with a red caruncle. At first glance we mistook it for a turkey but it is definitely a duck or a goose. I googled for it and the closest thing was Muscovy duck.

From FOSC: The bird has been identified as a Moscovy Duck.
Please see the Aug 12 entry for Jean Cavanaugh for more info.

Muscovy Duck Loitering just upstream from Sligo Creek and Three Oaks. Mon, Aug 14, 2017, 6am and 5pm Janet Kinzer I'm guessing this is a goose of some kind - heavy black legs, webbed feet, heavy body, slow moving. It waddles away if you approach. Yellow billed, shaped like a ducks,with a red mask or wattle.The head is about to my knee. The body is mottled mostly brown. Nver opened the wings though I approached.

Photo by Janet Kinzer

From FOSC: The bird has been identified as a Moscovy Duck.
Please see the Aug 12 entry for Jean Cavanaugh for more info.

Great Egret Downstream from Maple Avenue, where the smaller stream meets Sligo Creek. Sun, Aug 13, 2017, 9am Beth Baker First one I've seen in decades of walking in the park.

Photo by Beth Baker

Tree Fungus Along Sligo Creek trail, near Dallas and Brunett Avenues Sat, Aug 12, 2017 Steve Fine

Photo by Steve Fine

Muscovy Duck In underbrush near creek at the end of Three Oaks Drive. Sat, Aug 12, 2017, ~6:30pm Jean Cavanaugh My neighbor posted a photo of the duck on our neighborhood listserv, and another neighbor identified it. I was out walking the dog this evening, and we saw the duck pecking for insects in the underbrush and forest along the creek. It was definitely a duck, with a duck bill. It was also larger than the typical duck we see in the creek. The coloring was striking - dark green and brownish, with red on face/bill area.

Photo by Susan Hunt

From FOSC: These dabbling ducks are wild along the Rio Grande River, Texas, and south into Brazil. A Sligo sighting must be of an escaped domesticated Muscovy.

Black Crowned Heron The pond ~100 yards downstream from Forest Glen Road. Sun, Aug 6, 2017, 6:20am Dan Treadwell When I got too close for his liking, he flew into nearby tree.

Photo 1 by Dan Treadwell
Photo 2 by Dan Treadwell

Flying Squirrel Back yard on Haverford Road. Two blocks west of New Hampshire and about 200 yards north of the convergence of Long Branch and Sligo Creek (Becca Lilly Park). Fri, July 28, 2017, just after sunset Bill In the waning dusk, three family members sitting in their backyard after sunset noticed what was first thought to be a wounded bat or wood pecker landing awkwardly on a tall oak tree in the back yard. As they observed the creature starting to climb the tree the 13 year old member observed that it looked like a chipmunk--at which point it was determined to be a flying squirrel.
Great Blue Heron The pond just inside the beltway along Sligo Creek Road, ~100 feet downstream from Forest Glen Road. Mon, July 17, 2017, 7:15am Dan Treadwell

Photo by Dan Treadwell

Northern Water Snakes (2) Just upstream from Park Valley Bridge. Sun, July 16, 2017 Kit Gage Saw two intertwined northern water snakes just upstream from Park Valley Bridge. They were right up from the creek, in the sun. One slithered away quickly. The other just stayed in the greenery. About 4 feet long.

Photo by Kit Gage

Yellow-Crowned Night Herons (2) Toward the beginning of the rocky diversion path after Park Valley Road. Sat, July 15, 2017, 2:30pm Alys Cohen We saw them land on the edge of the creek. They were so well camoflaged that it was hard to keep track of them or photograph them.
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron The pond just inside the beltway along Sligo Creek Road, ~100 feet downstream from Forest Glen Road. Mon, July 2, 2017, 7am Dan Treadwell Very skittish creature - I was lucky to get so close.

Photo by Dan Treadwell

Painted Turtle University Blvd stormwater ponds (just N of Univ. Blvd) Sat, June 29, 2017, 9:30am Ed Murtagh Painted Turtle laying eggs.

Photo by Ed Murtagh

House Wren Perched on top of bird house on trail down from soccer fields, upstream from Colesville Rd. The Wren popped into the bird house. Tues, June 27, 2017, 11am Katherine Payne
Coopers Hawk ~1/2 mile upstream from University Blvd, on the bike path about half way between end of Colt Terrace and main Sligo Creek trail. Sun, June 16, 2017, 1:15pm Dan Treadwell Was lying dead alongside the bike path.
Black-Crowned Night Heron In the stream about 300 feet from the intersection of Sligo Creek Pkway and the Beltway Sun, June 11, 2017, 6:30pm Linda Keenan I might have seen another Black-crowned Night Heron farther downstream just northwest of Brunett Ave.
Venus' Looking Glass, Butterfly Weed, Bracted Plantain in bloom In the powerline meadow that crosses East-West Hwy Thurs, June 8, 2017, 4pm Michael Wilpers The plantain is within the footpath through the meadow between 16th Place and the second tower. The others are near that tower (the one closest to the paved Sligo trail and footpath through the meadow). Neither Butterfly Weed nor Bracted Plantain were reported as occurring within Sligo in the 2003 survey of our native plants. Venus' Looking Glass was reported only in this section.

Bracted Plantain by Michael Wilpers
Butterfly Weed by Michael Wilpers
Venus' Looking Glass by Michael Wilpers

Black-Crowned Night Heron Near the footbridge by Heather Ave and Sligo Creek Parkway Tues, June 6, 2017, 4pm Craig Lapreziosa Photo taken from the Sligo Creek Trail.
The bird sat there for a few minutes before flying off up the creek.

Black-Crowned Night Heron by Craig Lapreziosa

Downy Woodpecker Sligo Creek Pkwy 1/4 mile upstream from Piney Branch Road Sun, June 4, 2017 Dan Treadwell Lying in the road dead

Photo by Dan Treadwell

Raven Along Comstock Branch, between Boulder Ave and Piney Branch Road Wed, May 24, 2017, 11:20am Heather Livingston I could hear something VERY different sounding outside, so loud and deep croaky call, repeated, close. Looked out my back door and there was a very large dark black bird in a low young tree, I think it had been trying to get a squirrel. It stood on the low branch and croaked several times. I could see well its size and long hooked black beak. Definitely not a crow. I caught a glimpse of black wings of another nearby bird flying away but don't know if that was another raven or a crow. There was a much smaller grayish bird at one point near the raven, not sure what type, pecking at it I think and then it flew away. The squirrels all hid. After a couple more croaks the raven flew away and I didn't hear it again. Estimated height (very rough guess) about 18 inches. Cloudy damp day, but not raining.
Eastern Box Turtle Crossing Park Crest Drive at Sussex Road (one block from Sligo Creek Park) Sat, May 20, 2017, 9:20am Dreen Maahs

Info on the Eastern Box Turtle

Black-Crowned Night Heron University Blvd Stormwater Ponds Thurs, May 18, 2017, 9am Ed Murtagh Lots of turtles and herons at the ponds this morning too.

Black-Crowned Night Heron by Ed Murtagh

Yellow Finch Next to berm between Sligo Creek and Takoma Park Elementary. Wed, May 10, 2017 Judy Dougherty, Jim Dougherty, Miro & Seneca Honzak
Lone Cedar Waxwing, Wood Duck, Black Throated Blue and (female) Mourning Warbler Downstream from Colesville Road between Tennis Court and along playground area. Wed, May 10, 2017, 10:30am-noon Katherine Payne
Peregrine Falcon Circling over University Blvd. stormwater pond. Fri, May 5, 2017, 4:20pm Leah Haygood Magnificent bird! I got a good look at his/her "hood" as it circled the stormwater pond a few times and then flew off. I've never seen one in Sligo Creek before but I've heard there are some nesting in downtown Silver Spring.

Representative photo from Audubon Society

Snapping Turtle About 200 yards upstream from Forest Glen Road. Fri, May 5, 2017, 1:15pm Dan Treadwell Large Snapping Turtle. Did not have a tape with me, but I laid a copy of today's Express newspaper beside him to show scale.

Snapping turtle, Photo #1 by Dan Treadwell
Snapping turtle, Photo #2 by Dan Treadwell

Yellow-Crowned Night Heron From the Ten-Block Ford that crosses the Wheaton Branch just upstream of its joining the Sligo Creek mainstem (a bit upstream from prior 2017 sightings). Mon, May 1, 2017, 9am Laura Mol Sighted an adult YCNH impressively soaring into low trees along the Branch, watching/resting?/hunting? and then swooping closer in and upstream, alighting on a largish branch overhanging the water, continuing its water-watching. Overcast, 70 degrees F.

All About Birds

Eastern Box Turtle About 20 feet away from the Bennington Tributary. Fri, Apr 28, 2017 Anne Vorce Reported by a neighbor. Medium size. Maybe the same one we have seen for years. I had wondered if he were still around.

Info on the Eastern Box Turtle

Black-Crowned Night Heron Sitting on rock in Sligo Creek adjacent to Dale Drive Neighborhood Park. Fri, Apr 28, 2017, ~7:45am Hisao Yatsuhashi

Info on this bird from the Chesapeake Bay Program

Two nesting pairs of Yellow-Crowned Night Herons Directly over the parkway. Walk north from the Park Valley Bridge along the trail. After crossing the first hiker/biker bridge start looking overhead--or look for bird droppings on the southbound lane of the parkway and then look up! Thurs, Apr 27, 2017 Sam Stokes For several years a pair has nested above the parkway in this location. This year there are two. The large nests are easy to spot, but you'll need binoculars for a good look at the occupants. For more information on this bird, go to:

All About Birds

Green Heron At the Ladd Street entrance to the Park, near the new wetland development. Wed, Apr 26, 2017, ~11am Dana Best

Info on this bird from the Chesapeake Bay Program

Green Heron University Blvd. stormwater ponds, the large one closest to the path. Mon, Apr 24, 2017, ~4pm Leah Haygood Lone Green Heron fishing along the edge. Great Blue Herons are common here but you don't usually see Green Herons.

Representative photo from BirdingInformation.com

Blue Toadflax and other native wildflowers blooming The powerline meadow (between New Hampshire Ave & East-West Hwy) Sun, Apr 23, 2017 Michael Wilpers This species, with its delicate, sparse blue flowers on 8-inch-tall stems, was labeled "rare" in Sligo in our 2003 survey of native plants and only in this section. I saw it in a small colony of a couple-dozen stems covering an area of about 2-3 square feet about half-way between the two tall powerline towers. Other natives blooming were Bluets, Plantain-leaved Pussytoes, Cinquefoil (Common or Dwarf), and a large number of Dewberry.

Blue toadflax, Photo by Michael Wilpers
Cinquefoil, Photo by Michael Wilpers
Dewberry, Photo by Michael Wilpers
Pennsylvania Fleabane, Photo by Michael Wilpers
Plantain-leaved Pussytoes and Bluets, Photo by Michael Wilpers

Yellow-Crowned Night Heron Downstream from Piney Branch Rd. and Sligo Creek Parkway between the two foot bridges. Sat, Apr 22, 2017, 9:30am Irene Walton Fishing in the creek.
Hooded Merganser, male ~175 yards downstream from the 4/16 sighting below. This time seen from the last creek-crossing bridge above (N/W, just upstream of) Piney Branch Road Fri, Apr 21, late afternoon Laura Mol He was in a patch of sunlight, on a rock near the bank of the Creek, preening and then still for 10+ minutes, with a Mallard pair in the water close by for part of the time. When a crow flew in, he took to the water and raised his impressive "hammerhead," white-flashing crest. What a gorgeous duck! MD BB Atlas #2 reports increasing H-Merganser nesting along the Patuxent River (roughly 10+ miles NE of Sligo Creek).
Hooded Merganser Near the trail bridge between the Dale Ave. playground and the "bog" off Sligo Creek Road (on the way to Wayne Ave.) Sun, Apr 16, 2017, morning Barbara Neu This very fancy and dramatic waterfowl was a wonder to see!

Representative photo from PurelyPoultry.com

Two Lightning Bugs Just up from Sligo Creek upstream from Park Valley Road Mon, Apr 10, 2017, ~8pm Kit Gage It was a hot day - high 80s. But still this is the earliest I can recall seeing them in the spring.
Male Red-winged Blackbirds wrestling; also Wood Duck, 3 Snapping Turtles, 4 species of mustard, field pansies Wheaton Branch stormwater ponds (at Dennis Ave) Sun, Apr 9, 2017 Michael Wilpers Three male Red-wings had been singing from low perches around the Dennis Ave end of the larger pond when two confronted each other in shallow water along the edge, one appearing to pin the other (wrestling style) for a few seconds only for the ruckus to start again. The whole encounter lasted about a minute with wild flashes of red and black feathers. The south and east banks were carpeted with tall white-flowered spikes of (probably) Wild Peppergrass, with scattered bursts of dramatic yellow from at least three other mustard species, probably Field Mustard, Creeping Yellow Grass, and Common Winter Cress (aka Yellow Rocket). Many Field Pansies on the far slope of the eastern-most berm.

Common Wintercress and Field Peppergrass (lepidium campestre) Photo by Michael Wilpers
Field mustard (brassica rapa) Photo by Michael Wilpers
Creeping yellowcress (rorippa sylvestris) Photo by Michael Wilpers

Northern Harrier, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, American Toads mating, Green Frog, Skunk Cabbage in fresh leaf Kemp Mill area of the Park between Univ Blvd and Channing Drive Tues, Apr 4, 2017 Michael Wilpers and Helen Read The harrier soared high above the stormwater ponds. The gnatchatcher flitted about near the tops of the young Red Maples along the side-trail that branches off NE from the main path. The American Toads mated in the new tributary channel created last month by Parks, near where Nicholas joins Ladd. American Toads in "amplexus", the smaller male on top, with strings of fertilized eggs extending back a couple of feet. A Green Frog sat in the shallow water a few feet away. Fresh giant leaves of Skunk Cabbage decorated the landscape prolifically on both sides of the trail.

American toads mating, photo by Matt Harper, MCNPPC
Skunk cabbage, photo by Michael Wilpers

Great egret in breeding plumage University Boulevard stormwater pond Mon, Apr 3, 2017, ~2:30pm Leah Haygood Seemed to be having some success fishing. Hanging out near a Great Blue Heron, comparable in size.
Giant Native Grape Vine Along the left bank of the creek, about 30 feet upstream from the first parking area downstream from Wayne Ave. Tue, Mar 28, 2017 Michael Wilpers This is the third huge native grape vine of this size (6" diameter) I've seen in Sligo. The other two are located (a) about 30 feet downstream from Wayne and (b) about 100 ft downstream from Dennis, both on the right bank of the creek (facing downstream).

Photo by Michael Wilpers

Two Pileated Woodpeckers On the south side of the creek between the footbridge near Brunett Ave. and before the playground heading west. Tue, Mar 28, 2017, 1:15pm Linda Keenan We saw one pileated woodpecker on a tree. After a short time, it flew to another tree. Then as we continued down the path, a second pileated woodpecker flew from one tree to another.

Representative photo from AllAboutBirds.org

Brown Creeper, Phoebe, Yellow Crown Night Heron, and a 'flock' of Golden Crown Kinglets The playground just south of Colesville Road along Sligo Mon, Mar 27, 2017, 2pm Katherine Payne It was flying around near the back of the third pond and keeping very well hidden most of the time but occasionally gave me a good enough look to positively identify it before it disappeared.

Representative photo of Brown Creeper (Certhia Americana) from NH Public TV
Representative photo of Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis) from Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago, IL
Representative photo of Yellow Crown Night Heron from Shoal Creek Conservancy, Austin, TX
Representative photo of Golden Crowned Kinglets from AllAboutBirds.org

Bats
(Probable Brown Bats)
The neighborhood near SS Int'l Middle School Sat, Mar 25, 2017, 7pm Bruce Sidwell Likely brown bats due to size and behavior (fly in straight line, rather than erratic). Brown bats are also most common in this area. The sighting means they are out of hiberation now.
Eastern Meadowlark Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds Thur, Mar 23, 2017, 2pm Bob Cantor It was flying around near the back of the third pond and keeping very well hidden most of the time but occasionally gave me a good enough look to positively identify it before it disappeared.

Representative photo from the St. Lucie, FL Audubon Society

A Barred Owl One block from Sligo, at juncture of Three Oaks Drive & Manchester Road Wed, Mar 22, 2017, 7:30pm Katherine Payne Heard a barred owl call three times.

Representative call

A Barred Owl Near the juncture of Pershing Drive & Bennington Drive Tue, Mar 21, 2017, after 9pm Anne Vorce Heard a barred owl call.
Yellow Crowned Night Heron On the trail near the intersection of Hilltop Road and Geneva Ave Mon, Mar 20, 2017 Adam Landsman Beautiful mature yellow crowned night heron sitting on a branch above the creek.

Photo 1 by Adam Landsman
Photo 2 by Adam Landsman

Giant grape vine 30 feet downstream from Wayne Ave Mon, Mar 6, 2017 Michael Wilpers Between the creek and the hiker-biker trail. About 6 inches in diameter at the widest. Unfortunately, some "branches" of the one at Wayne have been cut.

Photo by Michael Wilpers

A Barred Owl Near juncture of Sligo Creek Pkwy & Brunett Ave Wed/Thurs, Mar 1-2, 2017, evening Debra Benator March 1: Along Sligo between Colesville Road & Brunett Avenue, spotted high in the trees.
March 2: The owl was active in the trees on the right as you turn onto Brunett from Sligo.

Representative photo from Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Groundhog On the paved Sligo walking path, ~200 feet south of Dennis Mon, Feb 27, 2017 Tamara Forys The groundhog ran across the path from the creek side to the west side. It did not appear to have the white nose of the groundhog previously spotted.
Bald Eagle Flying over Sligo Creek between Forest Glen Road and Dennis Avenue Fri, Feb 24, 2017, late afternoon Dominic Quattrocchi, Craig Oaks
Eastern Comma Butterfly Near trail between Forest Glen Road and Dallas Avenue Sun, Feb 19, 2017, 12:30pm Julie Mangin Eastern comma butterflies are among the few species of butterflies that overwinter as adults. They must be confused with this unseasonably warm weather.

Representative photo from the North American Butterfly Association

Shepherd's Purse in flower At the corner of Flower Ave and Division Ave Sat, Feb 18, 2017 Michael Wilpers A naturalized annual in the Mustard Family, this species was first documented in N. America in 1672 as among "such plants as have sprung up since the English planted and kept cattle in New England" (Del Tredici, "Wild Urban Plants"). All sources I looked at (including the 2012 Flora of VA) list flowering in March or later.

Photo by Michael Wilpers
Representative photo from a Manitoba, Canadian government website

Canada Geese Saw a couple of Geese at Wheaton Park baseball field, and a large flock in and around the stormwater ponds about 100 yards downstream from the Kemp Mill shopping center on Arcola Ave. Fri, Feb 17, 2017 ~noon Dan Treadwell Canadian Geese are frequently seen within the Sligo Creek watershed.

Photo 1 by Dan Treadwell
Photo 2 by Dan Treadwell

Belted Kingfisher Flying north over the new managed meadow between the soccer fields and the two stormwater ponds just downstream from the Beltway Wed, Feb 15, 2017 12:30pm Michael Wilpers Could have been the same individual as recently reported downstream from Colesville. Their breeding territories average only 0.6 miles of stream-length, but couldn't find info on their winter home-range.
Belted Kingfisher Downstream from Colesville Road, at bridge of first playground. Wed, Feb 8, 2017 ~noon Katherine Payne
A fox calling Heard from Tenbrook Drive (Sligo Woods neighborhood) Fri, Jan 27, 2017 ~8pm Susan Hunt We've heard this call occasionally since we moved here about 9 years ago, never been quite sure what it was.

Fox chasing dog, then calling (starting at 0:28sec, representative call)

Red Fox Trotting from Sligo Woods neighborhood, west across Tenbrook Drive, into Sligo Park (sledding slope, across Parkway from ball courts; between Dennis & University) Sun, Jan 22, 2017 Laura Mol A healthy/vigorous-looking, rather large red fox--in contrast to a sighting a year ago (2-29-2016) of a very mange-ridden fox on exactly the same flight path.

Representative photo of winter fox by Bonnie Coates Ott

Two black squirrels with white tips on tail Grounds of Washington Adventist University on the banks of Sligo Creek at Carroll Ave Fri, Jan 6, 2017 Jack Cohen & Clair Garman Black squirrels are relatively often seen. The white tips on their tails made these squirrels unique.

Photo by Jack Cohen
Photo by Jack Cohen

Feathers of Cooper's Hawk at apparent attack site In the Pepco corridor, about half-way between 16th Place and the hiker-biker trail Thu, Nov 24, 2016 Michael Wilpers Feathers of various sizes were scattered over a 1-meter square area of the foot path. The largest feathers were of Cooper's Hawk (or, much less likely, Sharp-shinned Hawk), which preys on mid-sized birds like Mourning Dove, Starling, and American Robin. Small, downy feathers may be of the prey, which in one urban study escaped 80 percent of such attacks.

For the following photos, click to zoom in.
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Photo by Michael Wilpers
Photo by Michael Wilpers
Photo by Michael Wilpers

Pileated Woodpecker and fallen leaves of Eastern Cottonwood Immediately downstream from the footbridge that crosses Sligo at the parking lot near Dallas Ave. Just below the two boardwalks. Sun, Nov 20, 2016 Michael Wilpers The two Pileated Woodpeckers were working on one of the old River Birch trunks that lean at 45-degrees over the dirt path, tearing off pieces of bark and tossing them to the ground 30 feet below, and pecking into the wood. The Cottonwood leaves were concentrated between the dirt path and the creek, and had fallen some time ago. I couldn't find the tree that had dropped them.
Photo by Michael Wilpers
Photo by Michael Wilpers
Video by Michael Wilpers
Largest leaves of Sligo Creek autumn In woods between Dennis & University Nov 14, 2016 Laura Mol Fallen leaves of Umbrella Magnolia (Magnolia tripetala), ~19 inches long. The tree from which the leaves had fallen has only a 9-inch diameter (not nearly the size of the oaks among which it grows), and Sally Gagne has noted it as the largest of several Umbrella Magnolias in the upland woodlands. Tree+leaves are just steps (to the south) off the small paved path that runs between the main Sligo paved path and the playing fields behind Sligo Middle School.
Photo by Laura Mol
Barred Owl calling 3 or 4 times Left bank of Sligo at the end of Hudson Ave about halfway between Piney Branch Road and Park Valley Road 10pm, Nov 14, 2016 Vijay Kaul Image of Barred Owl
Call of the Barred Owl (Strix varia)
Pair of Red Foxes Well used game trail off Dale Drive above the open field between Piney Branch Road and Wayne Avenue 8 am, Oct 17, 2016 James Anderson This is a well used game trail used by fox, deer, raccoons, rabbits and opossums. Animals use this trail all times of day and night. One fox seems to be showing its teeth at the other.
Photo by Jim Anderson taken with a trail camera
White Squirrel Worth Ave and Sligo Creek Parkway, just downstream from Colesville Rd 10 am, Oct 24, 2016 Norma Tilden Over the past week, there have been many sightings of a white squirrel here. Mostly they have been seen on trees and ground across the creek from the parkway. I cannot get close enough to see if it is albino (red eyes) or a variation on Eastern gray squirrel.
White squirrel photos from a 2007 sighting by Jennifer Kefer and Catherine Tunis
(photo 1), (photo 2)
What is a White Squirrel?
Red-shouldered Hawk Parkland east of Sligo Parkway, north of Dennis 1:30pm, Wed, Sep 28, 2016 Laura Mol Saw a juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk, perched high in one of the tallest trees that border a mown hillside ("Kid's Sledding Hill")--alerted by a noisy altercation with crows who regularly abound in just that area.
Stephen Davies Sept 2012 photo of juvenile RSH, looking around in Sligo
Turtlehead (Chelone glabra) Wetland area of Sligo Creek Park next to Sligo Creek Trail north of Forest Glen Road Oct 2016 Eli and Claudia Quattrocchi Noah Schainker, a six year old neighbor of the Quattrocchis, discovers the turtlehead
Closeup of a turtlehead
Red-shouldered Hawk Parkland east of Sligo Parkway, north of Dennis 1:30pm, Wed, Sep 28, 2016 Laura Mol Saw a juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk, perched high in one of the tallest trees that border a mown hillside ("Kid's Sledding Hill")--alerted by a noisy altercation with crows who regularly abound in just that area.
Stephen Davies Sept 2012 photo of juvenile RSH, looking around in Sligo
Barred Owl calling Takoma Woods, behind (west of) the Park Ritchie apartment building on Maple Ave. 10pm, Wed, Sep 21, 2016 Michael Wilpers I heard it from Maple Ave, in front of the Park Ritchie Apartments. The "Takoma Woods" is comprised of three adjoining wooded properties owned by the city, Mont Parks, and the MoCo schools.
2012 Sighting Photo by Ann Kay
Listen to Barred Owl Calls on YouTube
Black Throated Blue Warbler, American Redstart (male & female & immature male), Nashville Warbler Downstream from Colesville Rd 2:15pm, Wed, Sep 21, 2016 Katherine Payne Photos from the Internet
Black Throated Blue Warbler
American Redstart
Nashville Warbler
Indian-tobacco, Slender bush-clover, Velvet panic grass In the powerline corridor between 16th Place and the hiker-biker trail Sun, Sep 4, 2016 Michael Wilpers Indian-tobacco (Lobelia inflata) was recorded only north of Colesville Rd in the 2003 survey. Now a few plants are just beyond the SW corner of the former construction site for the new tower. A dense growth of the panic grass has grown up on part of the tower site, where also a few of the bush-clovers were found.
Indian-tobacco
Slender bush-clover
Velvet panic grass
Downy Woodpecker High in a tree along Sligo Creek Parkway, near Park Valley Road, downstream from Piney Branch Rd 1pm, Sun, Sep 11, 2016 Adam Gray Web Photo
Canadian Geese Ponds near Kemp Mill Shopping Center 1:17pm, Mon, Sep 5, 2016 Dan Treadwell Large group of Canadian Geese
Photo by Dan Treadwell
Deer (group of 3) 1 mile downstream (i.e., South) of University Blvd on Sligo Creek Parkway, on East side of Parkway 1:05pm, Mon, Sep 5, 2016 Dan Treadwell Photo by Dan Treadwell
Passiflora lutea
(yellow passionflower)
upstream from Park Valley bridge All of Aug 2016 Kit Gage Glad to see that even after the WSSC stream restoration and sewer work with a big temporary construction area, the vine is still there.
Photo by Kit Gage
Vulture The sidewalk and wooded area betwee the Sligo Middle School and the creek at Dennis Ave 4pm, Tue, Aug 9, 2016 Evelyn Im not a bird person but I am pretty sure it was a vulture of some kind. He was a big guy! Saw him in front of Sligo Middle School first but then he flew into the wooded area on the school side of the creek.
Photo by Evelyn
Great Egret Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds 4pm, Tue, Aug 9, 2016 Bob Cantor At least one of the egrets is still coming back to the ponds. Here it is with a Great Blue Heron chasing it away from his favorite fishing spot.
Photo by Bob Cantor
Very bright caterpillar downstream from the Piney Branch intersection, up the right bank about 30 feet Fri, Aug 5, 2016 Sergio Obadia Identified by Sergio as a luna moth caterpillar.
Photo by Sergio Obadia
Barred Owl calling One block west of Long Branch Park, between Carroll and Maplewood Between midnight and 1 am, August 3 and 4, 2016 Michael Wilpers This may be the first time I've heard the owl(s) since the construction period for the new parking lot on Greenwood btw Maplewood and Division. I was worried that the owl(s) had abandoned the area.
Call of the Barred Owl
Two Post Oaks in unexpected places Wet areas near the south end of the Univ. Blvd. stormwater ponds Tue, July 19, 2016 Michael Wilpers In many visits to the ponds, I'd never noticed either of these Post Oaks. This species is usually found in dry habitats (common in the NJ Pine Barrens, for example), so it's a surprise to find one at the foot of the long berm along the south (downstream) edge of the ponds, with Pin Oak (typical of flood plains), and one the east side of the paved trail near the entrance to the berm, another often wet area, with Red Maples.
Photo 1 by Michael Wilpers
Photo 2 by Michael Wilpers
Great Egrets Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds 1pm, Thu, Aug 4, 2016 Bob Cantor Two Great Egrets were wading in the ponds and occasionally chasing each other around. They both flew off after about 15 minutes, but one of them returned.
Photo 1 by Bob Cantor
Photo 2 by Bob Cantor
Woodchuck (Groundhog) upstream from Park Valley Rd 11:15am, Sun, July 24, 2016 Kit Gage Cooling itself by drinking from a pond in my back yard next to Sligo Park. Looked at me briefly from its hind legs. Had a particularly white nose.
Photo by Kit Gage
Juvenile Yellow-crowned Night-Heron Dennis Avenue stormwater ponds (in the water, close by Dennis Avenue) Thu, July 21, 2016 Susan Hunt Web Photo of Immature Yellow-crowned Night Heron
Flowering narrow-leaved mountain mint, green-headed coneflower, swamp milkweed, tiny primrose Areas surrounding the Univ Blvd stormwater ponds Tue, July 19, 2016 Michael Wilpers Many of the mountain-mints flowering on the east bank of the ponds and on the east side of the creek, being visited by Red Admiral butterfly. Large stand of the milkweed on the west side of the creek just upstream from the ponds, being visited by Monarch; scattered individuals elsewhere. One green-headed coneflower at the base of the big berm at creek side.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
3/8" spot of lichen moving on tree bark On a Tuliptree next to the paved path, upstream from Sligo-Dennis Community Building` July 11 & 12, 2016 Laura Mol Moving slowly (at a rate just perceptible to a standing-still observer), an 8mm clump of Greenshield lichen was transversing the ups and downs of the ridges and furrows of one of Sligo's large Tuliptrees: it was a juvenile (larval form) of one of the Green Lacewings (family Chrysopidae), who was presumably camouflaging her/himself from those who would eat it. Returning the next day, I discovered that the lacewing youth had traveled around to the back side of the tree.
2009 Photo by Albert Hartley
2016 Photo by Laura Mol
More Info
Grey Treefrogs calling Just upstream from Forest Glen Road July 5-14, 2016 Laura Mol A Parkway drive-by hearing: overlapping calls of Gray Treefrogs (*Hyla presumably-versicolor*) near the constructed "wetland" just upstream of Forest Glen Rd:
  • 8:20pm, July 5 (~sunset, but darkish near the trees)
  • 10:20pm, July 7 many more individuals, almost a chorus, audible from the Parkway and also from W side of the "wetland" as far away as the playground (volume from there approx same as Beltway traffic);
    very hot & humid, ~83°F.
  • 5:15am, July 14 traffic still roaring but no frog sounds
File Photo     Frog Call
Eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina carolina) by the Bennington playground (just downstream from Colesville Rd) 10am, Wed, July 13, 2016 Doug Stephens Photo by Doug Stephens
Brilliant red fungus Downstream from Piney branch near the first foot/bike bridge Sun, July 10, 2016 Kit Gage There were about 5 of these lovely fungi in a row, perhaps spanning 1.5 ft.
Photo 1 by Kit Gage
Photo 2 by Kit Gage
8-point buck deer Dale Drive & Wayne Ave 9pm, Wed, July 6, 2016 Mike Livingston Large buck crossing Dale between the Revels building and the middle school along with a doe or juvenile buck
Photo from 2011 sighting by Tim Parker
Deer On Sligo Creek Bike Path upstream from University Blvd. About 100 yards beyond where Kemp Mill Plaza intersects with path. 1:15pm, Sat, July 3, 2016 Dan Treadwell Not the first time I've seen deer. I've almost hit them several times on my bike.
Photo by Dan Treadwell
Canada Geese Sligo Creek Bike Path about 100 yards south of where path from Kemp Mill Plaza (at Lamberton Drive) connects to path. This would be about 200 yards north of University Blvd on the bike path. 7pm, Sat, July 2, 2016 Dan Treadwell This large group of about 25-30 Canadian Geese is frequently out feeding around the pond that is West of the bike path. They are frequently in the bike path. There are a couple of mallards (male and female) that hang out with them also.
Photo by Dan Treadwell
Canada Geese Sligo Creek Parkway just inside the Beltway 6:45pm, Sat, July 2, 2016 Dan Treadwell This small group of about 7 Canadian Geese is frequently out feeding near the small pond south just inside the Beltway
Photo by Dan Treadwell
Adult Yellow-crowned Night-Heron In the creek, downstream from the Whitehall-Gridley bridge which lies upstream from the Sligo-Dennis tennis courts. 7:30am, Fri, July 1, 2016 Susan Hunt The heron was eating small orange wiggly things out of the creek.
Photo from May 23, 2013 sighting by Lenore Boulet
Two adult barred owls near Leighton Ave. & St. Andrews Way, just upstream from Colesville Ave. Evening, Thu, June 23, 2016 Margaret Chang We were able to watch the pair for several minutes Thursday evening. Have heard them and seen them in flight for about a week. They may be living somewhere on Thornhill Rd, a block away.
2010 Photo by Anthony Brown
Adult snapping turtle Emerging from left bank downstream of bridge & parking lot across parkway from steps to Parks Dept HQ, just upstream from Colesville Ave.. Morning, Fri, June 24, 2016 Margaret Chang Turtle stood for awhile and was quite visible from the path.
Banded male cardinal Backyard 512 Leighton Avenue, Silver Spring June 20-23, 2016 Margaret Chang The male cardinal had a silver band on each leg. Multiple sightings in yard.
Large Snapping Turtle, apparently laying eggs Upstream from the playground area at Flower Ave and Sligo 7am, Tue, June 14, 2016 Steve Price Turtle was maybe 20" long. Not frightened by people passing by. It was on level ground, sandy with some grass and weeds. The bank is sandy here and climbable by a turtle. I saw a similar turtle downstream 1/4 mile at New Hampshire Avenue bridge, May 30, probably the same one. Maybe five years ago I also saw a small turtle of unknown type come out of the Creek at the same Sligo North location in mid-June, likely to lay eggs, but it went back into the Creek when people approached. I returned 8:30 pm same day but found only an empty hole.
I wish the eggs of these turtles could be left to hatch, but Sligo is so urbanized with people, dogs ...
Photo from 2010 photo essay by Beth Baker
Snapping Turtle Nest web page
Wood Thrush Upstream from Colesville Rd, before soccer field 10am, Mon, June 20, 2016 Katherine Payne Spotted by the edge of the creek.
File Photo
Barred Owl and two fledglings Comstock Branch below Piney Branch Road 8:15pm, Tue, June 14, 2016 Mike Livingston Huge barred owl (est. >2 feet long) and two juvenile owls hunting in the woods at twilight. Parent owl made eye contact at eye level at a distance of maybe 30 feet. After the owls flew away, also saw a doe and fawn and a pregnant raccoon in the same vicinity.
2012 Sighting Photo by Ann Kay
Native Rose in bloom. Also Venus' Looking-glass, Ragwort, Bracted Plantain flowering and a spectacular polypore mushroom apparently growing on bare, compacted earth Pepco powerline corridor between hiker-biker trail and Riggs Rd Sun,
June 12, 2016
Michael Wilpers Dozens of the soft-pink, papery flowers down in the dense grasses. Probably Rosa virginiana or R. carolina, neither recorded for Sligo in 2003 survey. Ragwort had basal leaves like Round-leaved Ragwort, but seems unlikely. Plantain is a beautiful naturalized plant. Venus' Looking-glass rare in Sligo.
Photo Album by Michael Wilpers
Black Vulture Sligo Creek Parkway approximately 200 yards downstream from University Blvd 1pm, Fri,
June 10, 2016
Dan Treadwell Photo 1 by Dan Treadwell
Photo 1 by Dan Treadwell
Four Foxes Wheaton Branch Stormwater Management Ponds 9am, Thu,
June 9, 2016
Bob Cantor Four foxes were together at the back of the third pond. They began to disappear into the underbrush as soon as I got my binoculars on them, so I couldn't tell if one was larger and might be the parent. The best picture I could get is this one from way far away which shows 2 of them.
Photo by Bob Cantor
Giant Cottonwood in bloom In field about 0.7 miles downstream from Riggs Rd on the right side of trail (Hyattsville) Sun, May 29, 2016 Bruce Sidwell The large Eastern Cottonwood was in full "cottony" bloom. The ground all around looked like a light snow.
Photo Album by Genie Sidwell
Black-crowned Night-heron Little "waterfall" over a stone wall, at the first foot bridge upstream from Maple Avenue [webmaster note: This is the dam for Sligo Waterworks of the early 20th century.] 4:45pm, Mon, May 30, 2016 Patricia Wood It's a spot where I've seen them before, tho not often. Since I didn't spot the resident Yellow-Crowns today, this was a nice replacement! Very visible while on top of the wall, but when down at the base of the "falls" fishing in the white water, hard to see if you weren't looking carefully.
Archive Photo by Michele Gibbs
Sound of old, large snapping turtle emerging from the muddy water Small shallow pond just upstream from Forest Glen Rd Noon, Sat, May 28, 2016 Kenzie Raulin He stayed for about 15 minutes. He seemed to be not only old but very wise.
Photo by Kenzie Raulin
Newborn fawn 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
American Bull 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 descends...in 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