[CT Birds] Hurricane Birds

Frank Mantlik mantlik at sbcglobal.net
Mon Aug 29 20:40:26 EDT 2011

8/29 - Some follow-up comments regarding the report of a Bridled Tern near Compo 
Cove.  At 2:10 I received a phone call from Julian Hough, alerting me to this 
report.  I had just taken my lunch break at Compo Beach ( a delightful sunny 
day) with binos in hand, and saw little except 1 WHIMBREL migrating sw low over 
the water.
I promptly drove my truck to the Hillspoint Rd. / Compo Cove area.  I saw only 1 
LEAST TERN on a rock; no sign of any floating flotsam, nor any Bridled Tern.  
I also called Tina Green, who happened to be just offshore on Nick Bonomo's boat 
at Cockenoe Island.  They came upon a tern on some flotsam, excited at the 
prospects, but it was in fact a BLACK TERN.  The winds seemed SW,  so Brendan's 
comment that it was drifting east toward Sherwood Is. makes sense.
After work, I found Sherwood Is. SP closed to entry due to the storm damage. 
 The officer told me the planned opening date is Wed. 8/31 at 8am.  By then, the 
Bridled Tern could be off Carolina.

Frank Mantlik

From: Brendan Murtha <bmskua at sbcglobal.net>
To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org
Sent: Mon, August 29, 2011 3:08:48 PM
Subject: [CT Birds] Hurricane Birds

Following up with James's report, here are the highlights Sean Murtha and I had 
the past 2 days-


Veteran's Park, Norwalk:  BAIRDS SANDPIPER - 1 confirmed, a few other possible 
Pectoral Sandpiper- 4 or so.   The park was flooded, providing great habitat for 

shorebirds.  Tons of peeps were present (Least and Semipalm), plus a lot of 
Laughing Gulls, numbering in the hundreds.  Missed the Red-necked phalarope. 
Mardi and Towni Dickinson had seen it only minutes before we arrived..

Calf Pasture Beach, Norwalk-  CASPIAN TERN-1,  Forster's Tern- 2, plus a handful 

of unidentified Storm-Petrels way out.


Sasco Creek Beach, Southport-  JAEGER sp., far out, harassing terns. 

Compo Hill Area, Westport, where Hillspoint road curves along the shoreline east 

of Compo Beach - BRIDLED TERN- 1 

Upon arrival we picked out the bird on a piece of flotsam pretty far out to the 
east, off Sherwood Island (which remains closed).  As the flotsam drifted nearer 

shore the bird lifted off and flew south-westward until we lost it, but later we 

picked it up again alighting on another piece of flotsam, also to the east but 
unfortunately no nearer. The bird appeared mainly dark gray with white 
foreparts, and when it flew, the wings appeared long and narrow with a touch of 
white underneath.  While admittedly distant, we felt it was not black enough to 
be Sooty Tern and the wings too narrow to be Sooty or Black Tern.  Its habit of 
alighting on flotsam also strongly indicated Bridled Tern.  We hope someone else 

can relocate the bird- if Sherwood Island re-opens, the view may be better from 

Moments later we had a BLACK TERN at the Sherwood millpond, the nearest we were 
able to park.

-Brendan Murtha

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