[CT Birds] 2014 New Year's Day Highlights

Timothy L Thompson twodogs77 at sbcglobal.net
Wed Jan 1 23:37:24 EST 2014


1/1/14 - 57 species to jump start the new year:

Norwich Backyard (6:50AM) - RED-SHOULDERED HAWK woke me up (I should have known it was going to be a great birding day!), and a continuing YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER.

Waldo Tract, Sprague/Scotland (8:30AM) - RED-TAILED HAWK (3), HERMIT THRUSH,  EASTERN BLUEBIRD (4), RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER (3).

Amos Lake Boat Launch, Preston (11AM) - BALD EAGLES (3), 1-adult w/2 immatures, CANADA GEESE (350+), LESSER SCAUP, COMMON MERGANSER (2F), HOODED MERGANSERS, RING-NECK DUCKS, BELTED KINGFISHER, RUDDY DUCKS.

Avery Pond, Preston (12:25PM) - GREATER-WHITE FRONTED GOOSE continues, CANADA GEESE (575+), GREAT BLUE HERON, MALLARDS (150+), BLACK DUCK (35) and I watched/counted 311 AMERICAN CROW fly overhead heading southeast.  Hint! Hint!  Amos and Avery are red hot with wildfowl right now!  You can even do "heater birding" from your vehicle at the end of each of the boat launches.

Ryder Road, North Stonington (1:35PM) - W/Bob Dewire. Continuing non "metro" RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, YELLOW BELLIED SAPSUCKER, 3 NORTHERN FLICKERS (yellow shafted), RED-BELLIED WOODPECKERS (2), COWBIRDS(3),  EASTERN BLUEBIRDS (5) and others!  I found this place last Sunday (12/29) when RED-HEADED WOODPECKER flew right over me.  The longer Bob and I stayed the more birds that showed up. Best directions: follow Ryder Road from Rte 2.  When you see mailbox 79 on right hand side, go 4/10ths of a mile further until you reach a little dip in road. There will be a white 5 gallon pail on a farm fence post on the right.  Park on right (very small pull-off).  With your back to the sun, just wait and the RED-HEADED WOODPECKER will cross back and fourth.  His roost is right there!  He drives all intruders out of the area.  Lets hope that when the time comes, a mate is found and the bird(s) stick around for a very long time!

Stonington Point (3 PM) - PEREGRINE (perched on blue conduit box on right side of Stonington Water Tower, as viewed from Stonington Point looking back north towards tower), SURF SCOTER, COMMON LOON, COMMON EIDER, LONG-TAILED DUCKS and usual MERGANSERS. Lots of GULLS.  No BONAPARTE'S GULL.

But..........

Barn Island, Stonington (3:55PM) - BLACK-HEADED GULL continues.  WHERE WERE YOU YESTERDAY????  Spotted at 4:05pm w/fellow birders David and Elaine.  Gull was feeding in 3 to 6 inches of water fifty feet to the left of the boat launch.  Record pictures taken.  Flew off at 4:20pm heading towards Watch Hill/Napatree area.

Timothy L. Thompson
Norwich, CT


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