[CT Birds] Ebbs Corner, Suffield

paul cianfaglione pcianfaglione at hotmail.com
Sat Jun 19 11:09:03 EDT 2010


It's been exactly two years since I first visited this new birding location (corner of routes 585/168, across from Babb's Beach Recreation Area) in Suffield. The purchase of this land (old tobacco fields) was originally intended to mitigate the loss of grassland birds (Upland Sandpipers and Grasshopper Sparrows) at Rentschler Field and establish quality habitat. You can read more here, http://www.conservationfund.org/node/867  

>From what I can tell, not much has changed except for some new signs, which is pretty much par for the course for grassland bird protection in this state. Today I found AMERICAN KESTRELS (at nest box), 4 BROWN THRASHER, PRAIRIE WARBLERS, EASTERN TOWHEES, FIELD SPARROWS, INDIGO BUNTINGS, ORCHARD ORIOLES and other species expected in shrubland. The only grassland birds included a pair of GRASSHOPPER SPARROW and a pair of SAVANNAH SPARROW. How the state plans to transform some of the habitat to accomodate more grassland birds (especially Upland Sandpipers) should be interesting. If you have confidence in local conservation leaders, this may change your mind, you can see what was done to restore Grasshopper Sparrows at Northwest Park in Windsor here at, http://ct.audubon.org/IBA_NWP.html  The USFWS decided to plant a swathe of warm summer grass at the park when all of the local birds (Bradley and Rentschler) are nesting in bunchgrasss with pockets of open areas. The acreage size was also questionable to support the species (see Dr. Askins book on grassland bird restoration). Who signed off on that I wonder? In my opinion, the hope for Upland Sandpiper and Grasshopper Sparrow conservation in Connecticut begins and ends over the fence at Bradley International Airport. 

Paul Cianfaglione

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