Monday, March 16, 2009

NY Birding with Bloggers

I'm a bit late getting on the bandwagon for posting about Saturday's NY birding adventure that brought together some of the local forces of blogging/birding in John, Corey, and Carrie. They've all given wonderful, in-depth reports of the day, so I won't repeat everything they've already said. It turned out to be a terrific day including signs of springs, some rarities, and it was a good opportunity to work on my NY state list. Not that I really have a NY state list, but if I did, it would be around 178 species... or maybe exactly 178 species. Not bad for not trying. Here are some highlights of the day via photos.

Tree Swallows were back at Jamaica Bay scoping out nesting boxes and generally just looking happy. I was happy to see them because it means warm weather is close!

Brant are rather conspicuous in coastal areas of NYC. They're even seen on the medians along the highway. This one was seen at Jones Beach, shortly after we saw a gorgeous Snowy Owl. We had a 4 goose species day! See the last pic below.

If a gun were placed to my head and I was forced to pick a favorite bird, I might opt for the Harlequin Duck. It is just simply gorgeous. I love their little squeaky sounds, although this pair was silent. These Harlequins sped along very close like little motor boats or wind-up toys. Love em!

The oddest sighting of the day goes to this Ross's Goose. I wish I had a photo of the pond it used as its temporary home just off the main drag in Merrick, Long Island (where we had some wicked pizza and I got some Girl Scout Cookies - Samoas!!!). It definitely was out of place, but this little "city" pond was particularly spectacular with Ruddy Ducks, Hooded Mergs, Black-crowned Night Herons, and Shovelers joining the party. Definitely odd to see a Ross's there though. It was a terrific life bird for some on our trip and very accomodating. It swam pretty close to us and afforded us nice photo ops.

It was a terrific day to be out with old friends and new. I look forward to our next bird blogger adventure.


John said...

I enjoyed birding with you. Thanks again for the ride into NYC!

MaineBirder said...

Very nice photos!

There is a possible Ross's Goose near Biddeford, ME. the last several days.

corey said...

That Ross's Goose just didn't belong!

A great day's birding with great company...what more can a birder ask for?

Mike said...

Great photos, Patrick! Too bad I missed this blogger birdfest.

OpposableChums said...

You may have to divvy up the birds on these blogger field trips, i.e., Corey blogs the raptors they find, Patrick blogs the ducks and geese, John the rarities, etc.

This way we'll be forced to cruise ALL of your blogs for an accurate, 3-dimensional picture of the day.

Patrick Belardo said...

You know, that's a darn good idea!

Rick said...

Lucky! Wish I'd been there.

Christopher said...

Wish i was there with you all - sounds like it was a great day!

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Gallicissa said...

Sounds like a good trip.
If I am held up at gunpoint and asked to pick a favourite North American bird, I would pick the Painted Bunting.

Patrick Belardo said...

@Gallicissa - a fantastic choice! We get them here rarely in New Jersey. They are mostly found in the southern US.