[CT Birds] defending Storrs!
Anthony.Zemba at gza.com
Wed Jan 4 14:02:22 EST 2012
I lived in Ashford CT for 2.5 years and went to ECSU for 4 years about 15 years before that. I used to get snow buntings, water pipit, and horned larks annually at UCONN's W Lot, once even a Lapland Lonspur. Area birders also used to report Northern Shrike from time to time there.
At Horse Barn Hill I would get Savannah Sparrow and Bobolink singing during breeding season. And Wilson's Snipe would always be in the lowland wet spots during their peak movements through the state. Horse Barn Hill is where I got my life Barnacle Goose.
I remember a Weatear showing up at Mansfield Hollow Dam.
I'd visit Windham Airport to get my Eastern Meadowlark for the Year. This site was also the locality of probable and possible breeding for Grasshopper and Vesper Sparrows respectively back during the CT BBA. (not sure of their status in recent years).
Boston Hollow in Ashford-Eastford would reliably turn up Common Raven (even back when the latter was still a CT listed species) and various northern warbler species such as Canada Warbler, Northern Waterthrush, Black-throated Blue, and Blackburnian, while hits of Hooded Warbler, Kentucky Warbler, Cerulean Warbler, Worm-eating warbler and Acadian Flycatcher during the CT BBA and thereafter revealed a neat biogeographical juxtaposition. Reportedly, warblering along the Willimantic River was excellent if one stood on the footbridge in Willi (where you'd be at tree-top level) but I never got a chance to do that. I think I got my life Bay-breasted Warbler in Nathan Hale Forest in Willington.
The barrens around Mansfield Hollow reportedly was reliable for Whip-poor-will but again, I never tried for that CT listed species.
Dr. Marsh Ashton from the Yale School of Forestry built a house up in Union sometime around 2005ish. Shortly after he moved in, I attended a dinner party at his house. He reported having Evening Grosbeaks at his feeder the winter before, an incursion that apparently went unreported to the birding community. Incidentaly I think it was Tolland and Windham counties that produced the only confrmed breeding of this species in CT during the BBA.
Natchaug forest would usually turn up huge flocks of Rusty Blackbirds in the fall and early winter, and I'd stumble upon Ruffed Grouse in my travels here and there.
So coming from a former eastern CT guy (an ECSU student, former willington resident, former ashford resident), I have to defend Storrs as well!
But all in good fun my man! Perhaps this will spurn some more interest in birds and birding out in eastern CT!!
Anthony Zemba CHMM
Certified Ecologist / Soil Scientist
GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc.
655 Winding Brook Drive
Glastonbury, CT 06033
ONE FINANCIAL PLAZA
1350 Main Street
Springfield, MA 01103
anthony.zemba at gza.com
From: ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org [mailto:ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org] On Behalf Of paul cianfaglione
Sent: Wednesday, January 04, 2012 1:23 PM
To: CT Lists
Subject: [CT Birds] defending Storrs!
You're defense of Storrs was excellent! Great list of species!
The UCONN/Storrs area was an unintended target, they were used merely as an example. However, the lack of reports from Storrs and Tolland County since Hurricane Irene has made me wonder; where are all the northeastern birders?!?! Are there no Snow Buntings or Lapland Longspurs in Storrs? No Geese? Ebirders have barely put a dent in the Tolland County totals the last three months! May is a long way away!
As you pointed out, if Tolland is guilty of something, it would be a lack of bodies. In some places, a handful of birders can do a lot of damage!
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