[CT Birds] Chukar

SOPHIE ZYLA sophiezyla at snet.net
Thu Jan 29 08:02:59 EST 2015

A couple of years ago I went out fill my bird feeders and noticed 2 Chukars huddled against my chimney. It was rather cold and breezy and they must have loved the warmth and shelter. I had no idea what they were and didn't realize that they were a hunting species until I posted on CT Birds. So much for my great find! They were rather a nice surprise anyway. 

Happy Birding!

Sophie Zyla
Beacon Falls, CT

On Wednesday, January 28, 2015 9:21 PM, Rick Gedney via CTBirds <ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org> wrote:

>From Rick Gedney:

Madison, Jan 28th, 2015,  11:15 AM

Chukar - seen in Beekman Road neighborhood.  Flushed to south. 

After the storm I was wishing I cold be doing a few hours of sea watch looking for something rare instead of being at work.  While visiting a client I am driving out of the road and see a partridge type bird on the only area not covered by snow picking at the sand.   Pulled out my binos and did a double take.   This area is adjacent to the Hammonasett River corridor and there are some fish and game clubs up river so it is likely an escapee  - although this is not the time of year they may be stocking birds. 

I actually worked at one these clubs while in college and they would stock RN Pheasant and Bobwhite Quail on occasion.  Many of those birds bolted the fields and headed down river - some making it to Hammo State Park where they probably met their end as lunch for some raptor or mammalian predator.  They also would stock turkey on occasion...(they were a lot more scarce back then and Ruffed Grouse were a lot more common) .  Never saw a Chukar used.  

2 pheasant were seen on Race Hill Road below 80 late last week and could be escapees from Guilford Rod and Gun or Hammonasett Fishing Assc.   - so perhaps a bit of a jail break.  

I followed Dr. Proctor's ABC rule (Always Bring Camera) and got some good shots and made some field notes.  Light was great and bird was somewhat approachable.  Outstanding colors.  Did not see a band on leg and could see no mandible/beak damage from wire cage.  Actually bird looked pretty healthy and defiantly did not have any flight feathers clipped.  Quite the athletic bolt.

If the bird does make it down to Hammo it  will likely stir some excitement - it is pretty exotic looking - especially in the middle of a snowy winter.

BTW - since I did not see it reported we had a Eastern Phoebe at Haddam Meadows SP Sunday 1/25/15 - 11:30 AM.

Rick Gedney
rrged at comcast.net
203.410.6222 cell
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