[CT Birds] Where are the Petrels?
dennisvz at optonline.net
Thu Jul 16 12:56:52 EDT 2009
After the Grouse flap things have been a little dull. So here is
something to think about
Recent sighting of petrel in Long Island Sound often comment on
wether they were seen in Connecticut waters or not. I think this is a
trivial distinction. What is important is the presence of petrels and
shearwaters in the sound period. A bird in the sound is likely to
cross state boundaries anyway so exactly where the bird was flying
when observed is immaterial.
People often keep property lists. As far as I know, that includes all
the birds seen from the property, such a a hawk flying off in the
distance. I recall a friend while in his neighborhood, heard a
particular owl calling. He then rushed back to his house so he could
hear it from his property and put it on his list.
When doing Christmas Bird Counts, it is all birds observed from the
circle. We do not concern ourselves the bird is outside the area, as
long as we were within it.
Many major birding area are on the border between towns. I bet for
most people west of Oyster River it is cited at being in Milford.
People living east of the are probably call it West Haven. I don’t
know of anyone who makes the distinction of which town the bird was
standing in when writing field notes. When I found the Ross’ Gull it
was in Milford, but flew across the creek and landed on the West
Haven side. I guess I have it for two towns.
I believe that all pelagics found within the sound should be
considered Connecticut birds. I would think that New York has little
interest in Long Island Sound when they have the Atlantic Ocean to
play with. By keeping all records together we will get a better
understanding of what is happening in the sound as opposed to turning
a blind eye to half the records. Of course one tries to provide a
location as best as possible. And, obviously someone standing on the
beach at Port Jefferson spotting a Manx Shearwater makes it a New
York Bird. Otherwise anything seen from a boat, and not from shore,
can consider it Connecticut.
It seems more rational and realistic than carrying a GPS and
consulting maps every time a bird is sighted.
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