[CT Birds] Hartford area goodies (4/20)

Jamie Meyers ctredbird2 at comcast.net
Sat Apr 20 20:58:50 EDT 2013

>From Jamie Meyers: 
4/20 - Farmington, Batterson Pond -- BONAPARTE'S GULL continues, seen around 9:30 AM and 6:30 PM. Nice breeding plumage bird hawking bugs with the swallows. Also 1 female RED-BREASTED MERGANSER on the 6:30 trip. 
Portland, Portland Fairgrounds -- 6 PM, CATTLE EGRET continues, in the wet field to the east to the fairground pavilion. The bird was in the company of a GLOSSY IBIS and two 2 GREAT EGRETS noted previously. A breeding plumage HORNED GREBE was in the CT River as seen from the path on the west side of the fairgrounds. 
Southington, Shuttle Meadow Reservoir -- 8 HORNED GREBES in breeding plumage in a small, tight group. 

Wow, year birds to the left of me, year birds to the right! The Portland Fairgrounds also featured 2 Greater Yellowlegs, Palm and Black and White Warbler, the teals as noted by Bill earlier and a number of gnatcatchers along the river. Some of the gnatcatchers were in full song, which I seldom hear. Sounds like a goldfinch with a really sore throat. They don't seem to sing it all that long once they arrive here. There was a Spotted Sandpiper and a rather early Yellow Warbler at Batterson. I don't keep meticulous early bird records like at least one person who was at Batterson today but I can't remember ever getting one this early, at least in the U.S.. The Horned Grebes at Shuttle Meadow were nice, but alas, I had that species for my Southington list already! Seems like a really good push of that species in the past day or two. 

Oh, I also had the Purple Finches at Roaring Brook Nature Center. Historically, I've had pushes of them during this week in past years in my yard but not this year. Mark is right, they do bear an uncanny resemblance in some plumages to female Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, which would not be expected in these parts for another week and a half. 

Jamie Meyers 
Canton, CT 

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