[CT Birds] Raven Luna-ticks Big Day - May 23

peeplo at aol.com peeplo at aol.com
Thu May 13 10:12:41 EDT 2010

Dear friends and fellow birders:
As many of you know, the Connecticut Audubon Raven Luna-ticks—consisting of Nick Bonomo, Patrick Dugan, Dave Tripp, Frank Zygmont, and I—are planning another run at the Big Day record for Connecticut, which stands at 186 species. Last year, we garnered Connecticut’s second-highest Big Day total, finding 177 species, despite a flat tire that cost us an hour; we see it as a good omen. 
Our success was in large part due to generous contributions from Connecticut birders. Once again, we are seeking information on the specific whereabouts of lingering waterfowl, such as loons, grebes, coots, moorhens, any sea/diving duck, wigeon, etc., and uncommon nesting ducks such as Common and Hooded Mergansers, and Gadwall, Blue- and Green-winged Teal. Rail locations, especially for Sora and King, are greatly appreciated. 
Locations for less-common nesting birds, such as Belted Kingfisher, Cliff Swallow, Hairy Woodpecker (yes, Hairy Woodpecker), Winter Wren, Dark-eyed Junco, White-throated Sparrow, White-eyed Vireo (especially in northwest or southeast CT), warblers such as Golden-winged, Kentucky, Yellow-throated, Magnolia, Nashville, Northern Waterthrush, Canada, and Cerulean (not in the usual spots), and Yellow-breasted Chat (especially west of CT River), would be greatly appreciated. 
Nest locations for owls, especially Barn, Saw-whet, and Long-eared, are always useful, and we could use raptor nest locations for Broad-winged, Sharp-shinned and Cooper’s Hawks, American Kestrel, Peregrine Falcon, and Goshawk. 
Sites for all species need to be close to a road, as time constraints do not allow long treks into the woods. If there are any nests that are best left unpublicized, please contact me directly with directions, at Peeplo at aol.com. We are very careful not to disturb nesting raptors or other species. 
Obviously, there are many other less-common nesting species that would be of value to us, such as reliable sites for Common Nighthawk (New Haven?), Red-headed Woodpecker, Grasshopper Sparrow, Upland Sandpiper, Horned Lark, or even something like a Blue Grosbeak or Clay-colored Sparrow. Now that Sandy Point is iffy, a dependable location for Black Skimmer would be helpful, as well. 
We can never have too many sites for any given species, so please let us know what you’re seeing. The more specific the location, the better, and nests are always welcome!! 
This event is used as the annual fundraiser for the Connecticut Audubon Coastal Center at Milford Point. To support our team and the educational efforts of the Coastal Center, please visit www.ctaudubon.org to download a pledge form. It’s on the Coastal Center’s page. The bird-by-bird account of last year’s Big Day run can be seen on our blog at http://ctaudubon.blogspot.com/2010/05/187-species-in-one-day-birding-for.html, and the pledge form is available directly at http://www.ctaudubon.org/documents_user/BigDay2010PledgeForm_Final.pdf. 
We thank you for your continued generosity and support.  Frank Gallo, Director, Connecticut Audubon Coastal Center (and a Raven Luna-tick)

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