[CT Birds] NHBC Sherwood Island Highlights

Tina and Peter Green petermgreen at hotmail.com
Sat Nov 21 19:44:49 EST 2015

What a beautiful day it was for a bird walk! I led a walk for the New Haven Bird Club this morning at Sherwood Island State Park  with 30 plus participants. Some folks came specifically to see the Ash-throated Flycatcher but were treated with a few more rare birds than they expected.I decided to start by scoping Long Island Sound for waterfowl and gulls,all the time knowing the flycatcher was still around and wanting the sun to warm things up and allow the bird to warm up too. Our "resident" Lesser Black-backed Gull was roosting on the east beach shore and everyone had good looks at our first "good" bird of the day.We walked back to the main parking lot after seeing loons,ducks,and grebes to try for the Dickcissels that had been seen earlier this week and,there they were,feeding in front of the hedgerow with several House Sparrows.
While almost all of us were focused on the Dickcissels,Jim Clinton from Kingston NY,yelled "What's that big bird up high?". All eyes looked skyward and the group was treated to an American White Pelican! Wow!
We were all smiles and moved on to the spruce grove where the Ash-throated Flycatcher was being seen. I was hoping I had not not made a mistake by not going for the flycatcher at the beginning of the walk. 
Other birder's said the flycatcher had flown way to the back of the park towards the Mill Pond and I opted for the group to stay put near the cork tree and wait for the bird to appear to what has been it's favorite feeding area rather than chase it around the park.Sure enough,it flew in to give us and many other hopeful visitors,who were waiting,excellent views and photo ops.Who knew that this bird would stick around for five days and have so many birder's add it to their life and/or state list! 
At the end of the walk,we tallied a total of 51 species and added two new species to the New Haven Bird Club field trips list of all time.
Thank you to all the participants for making it one of the best and most enjoyable days of birding I've ever had. And thank you Goddess of Birding for sending the birds to Sherwood Island!

Tina Green
NHBC trip leader
Sent from my iPhone

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