[CT Birds] Stevenson Dam

Roy Harvey rmharvey at snet.net
Mon Apr 21 13:58:25 EDT 2014

Last Thursday afternoon when I visited the Stevenson Dam (which is also the bridge taking Rt 34 across the Housatonic between Oxford and Monroe) I could only be sure of a single Cliff Swallow, one that was perched on a wire and lowered its head enough to see the back of its neck.  I did think I saw a bird or two going under the bridge where their mud nests are built.

This morning when I arrived at the observation area below the dam (Monroe side) things were busier.  As I have in past years, I watched Cliff Swallows visiting the muddy puddles of the parking area as they gathered nesting material.  Their behavior was pretty typical, lots of swooping passes over a puddle until one of them landed, and then either an immediate departure or a few more joining it.  Nobody ever stayed long, and I never had more than five on the ground at a time, and perhaps not many more around in total.  I was using my binoculars out the window of the far side of the car, but I would probably have done better to park farther away and set up my scope in a window mount.  All in all, when there are puddles I have found it a good place to view these birds while they are (almost) sitting still.  In past years I have even had them land on the logs positioned to keep cars out of the river and site for a minute or two.

Roy Harvey
Beacon Falls, CT

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