Sunday, November 15, 2015

I knew it was coming.

Many of my birder friends knew I was stressing about certain birds. Red-breasted Merganser and Canvasback.  I've had abiut 5 sightings of Red-breasted Mergansers since I found one earlier. Most I've ever gotten in the county. Today I ran into Bart Camp and we were talking and I said Im gonna get a Canvasback. The next stop I went to was Quabog Pond in Brookfield. First bird I put my scope on was a drake Canvasback. I can't tell you how excited I was. I called all the locals and as far as I was told everyone got on it that went. With the whole Franklin's Gull craze that's been going on I've been very focused on finding one. Negative so far. The search isn't over yet. Today was one of the greatest days I had hiking the north Quabbin gates and listening to Barred Owls calling. Great. Freaking. Day. 

Canvasback - Brookfield  #207

Monday, November 9, 2015

1...or 2 Gulls left.

I saw a report (from Rodney Jenkins (2 days late. And again kudos to Jim for the White-rumped Sandpiper and Dunlin he found for me) of a Lesser Black-backed Gull in Charlton at Orlandos Farm.  I bird this everyday. I do a brief look over of the gulls as its had a Black-headed Gull in the past. Admittedly I am not good with first winter birds and this was a first winter bird I was looking for.....I studied up last night on 1st cycle Gulls and much more. Last year I found my own Lesser Black-backed Gull in Millbury at Singletary Lake. It was an adult so it was easy to pick up. As soon as I arrived I picked out the bird immediately. I studied it for awhile and snappedIt  some pics. It was nice to compare it to the other birds in the same cycle.  This was bird number 206. Also of note the last week I have seen 3 Black Vultures on Millbury. Away from Blackstone, Millbury may be the best area for one. Rodney also reported that he had a Sanderling at Lake Lashaway in Brookfield. I went there for that bird and wasn't able to find it. It's hard there with the hills on the island  and patience is needed. I did however find a Dunlin which I had thought was long gone as many people have tried for it since it was last reported. Possible a new one. So for shorebirds Sanderling might be my only one left. Back to gulls. Black-headed Gull and Glaucous Gull are all I need pictures of. I did have a Glaucous Gull earlier in the year but failed to get a photo. Anyone getting any tame Ruffed Grouse?

Lesser Black-backed Gull- Charlton #206

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Finally, it's happened to me, right in front of my face...

Sorry for the song reference. So the last few posts I've cried about not finding a Red-breasted Merganser. I have spent countless hours scanning Common Mergansers at great distances trying like hell to find a RBME. Well today was the day. I worked 11pm-7am and headed right for Scar Hill Rd in Boylston at the Wachusett Reservoir. First birds I saw were Long-tailed Ducks. Then I got to see 2 Spotted Sandpipers fly in. Then about a mile away I see a Merganser. I immediately knew that this was gonna be it. Here is my first pic at full power and my iPhone zoomed in. 

I could see at that point the bird was swimming towards me. I just simply waited. Sure enough it swam 20 feet in front of me where I was able to Digitscope some shots. Hard work paid off. Bring on a Canvasback. One just showed up in Cambridge. 

Red-breasted Merganser- Boylston #205

then yesterday a birded at the Quabbin looking for grouse and owls. neither but i did get a lifer Bobcat

Sunday, November 1, 2015

2 More In The Books

I kinda called it that I was going to get the birds I got this week, well this week. Ill start with Barrow's Goldeneye. I went on Halloween morning with the intention of finding a Barrow's Goldeneye. 2nd bird  I got my scope on was in fact a Barrow's. In ebird it is the earliest record in Worcester County ever and second oldest on the state. Pretty cool. The second bird that I called this week and is on pat for their arrivals was a Snow Bunting. Photographed one at the dike at Wachusett Reservoir where I discovered the Northern Wheatear. The search continues for a Red-breasted Merganser. It's kind of frustrating me not being able to land one. After that I'll need a Canvasback then my Ducks are pretty much covered and I can focus on finding Snowy Owls, Northern Goshawk and Ruffed Grouse.

Barrow's Goldeneye-Southborough #203

Snow Bunting - Sterling  #204