[CT Birds] Rhode Island Gulls and Snowy Owl today
kmueller at ntplx.net
kmueller at ntplx.net
Sun Jan 12 19:10:39 EST 2014
Good day birding in Rhode Island today!
Galilee Harbor. Started the morning off at 8:00 am on the docks near
the Frances Fleet and behind the processing Plant- 3rd cycle Glaucous
Gull came in close on the parking lot, docks and pilings. Giving great
close looks for half an hour. Also 2- 1st cycle Iceland Gulls (1 dark
and 1 medium plumage).
Scarborough Beach south end near WTP discharge 9:30 am. 1 adult
Black-headed Gull and 5 Bonaparte's Gulls mixed in with the other
Gulls (mostly Ring-billed Gulls).
Beavertail Point SP. 10:30 am. Snowy Owl was first sighted on the
chimney of the lighthouse museum building. With the 25 knot westerly
wind, the Owl kept moving around the park obviously trying to find a
windless roost. NOTE: I would like to add, that the numerous birders
and photographers gave the Owl a wide berth and respected its
space....no one crowded the Owl. It flew from the top of the house to
the nearby light pole. The wind coming across the west passage was too
strong for the Owl so it flew off the pole to the boulders on the east
side. It then flew to the edge of parking lot 3 on the east side and
landed in a tree-top. It stayed for a few minutes obviously fighting
the heavy wind again and then flew down to a large boulder just
offshore on the east side. Staying only a few minutes, it flew back to
the edge of the bank near the grassy lot where many of us were
standing watching the Owl at a distance. It landed within ten feet of
many of us, before flying off again landing on the gutter on the
backside roof of the lighthouse museum where it remained tucked in
nicely in the lee of the roof out of the heavy wind, Quite an amazing
After lunch, we stopped back at Galilee Harbor with hopes of finding
the adult GLaucous Gull that was reported yesterday. We found the two
Iceland Gulls from this morning, but no Glaucous Gull. At one point
someone came out of the packing plant with several large bins of iced
fish ready to be picked up. The Gulls went into a fierce feeding
frenzy covering these bins. There were several hundred Gulls on the
bins, on the pavement, and in the air hovering over the feeding Gulls.
In this cluster of Gulls I found a third Iceland Gull, a pale, nearly
white 1st cycle. The other two Iceland Gulls also joined in the
feeding and all three were present at the same time. I also found 2
banded 1st cycle Great Black-backed Gulls wearing Appledore Island
bands and leg markers.
At 3:00 pm on the way home we stopped at Grassy Point looking for the
Lesser Black-backed Gull but it was a no-show.
Highlights: 3rd cycle Glaucous Gull, 3- 1st cycle Iceland Gulls (pale
white, medium and dark plumages), 2 banded Great Black-backed Gulls, 1
adult Black-headed Gull, 5 Bonaparte's Gulls, Snowy Owl.
Keith and Jen Mueller
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