This is the Vermont bird report for Friday, October 10, 2003, covering the
period October 3-9.
Another fairly quiet week on the fall migration front, which was dominated far
more by reports of southbound Monarch butterflies than by migrant birds.
numbers are building, while shorebird and warbler numbers appear to have
SNOW GEESE are beginning to pile into Dead Creek Wildlife Management Area
(DCWMA), with one report of 2500+ on Oct. 5, another of 5000+ on Oct. 7, again
reported as 6-7000 on the 9th. A flock of 20 birds was reported on Danby Pond
on the 4th, and another of undetermined size in a Dorset corn field on the
7th. A lone ROSS'S-SNOW GOOSE hybrid was identified among the Snows at DCWMA
on Oct. 7. A huge flight of CANADA GEESE, numbering in the thousands, was
reported to be arriving at DCWMA on the 7th. Other waterfowl at DCWMA on Oct.
7 included WOOD DUCK, GADWALL, AMEDRICAN BLACK DUCK, BLUE-WINGED TEAL,
PINTAIL, and GREEN-WINGED TEAL. Away from the Champlain Valley, waterfowl
reported at Lake Bomoseen in Hubbardton on Oct 5 included CANADA GOOSE (11),
WOOD DUCK (111), GREEN-WINGED TEAL (2), AMERICAN BLACK DUCK (8), MALLARD (31),
and RING-NECKED DUCK (31).
Other reported birds from the Dead Creek area included a GREAT EGRET at
on Oct. 6 and 5 COMMON MOORHENS at the mouth of Whitney Creek in Addison on
Oct. 7. As many as 2 Peregrine Falcons were seen on several dates, and
NORTHERN HARRIERS were reported as "abundant" on Oct. 7.
On Lake Champlain itself, a HORNED GREBE still in breeding plumage was
on Oct. 7, and RED-NECKED GREBES on the 9th. Diving ducks on Oct. 9 included
both SCAUP species, all 3 SCOTER species (BLACK, SURF and WHITE-WINGED), and
RED-BREASTED MERGANSERS. One flock of 60 BLACK SCOTERS was observed migrating
off Addison. WHITE-WINGED and BLACK SCOTERS were also reported off the west
shore of Grand Isle on Oct. 3, with a flock of 18 BLACKS on the 8th.
Notable non-DCWMA raptor reports included a single NORTHERN HARRIER and
COOPER'S HAWK in Windsor on Oct. 5, a NORTHERN GOSHAWK in Grand Isle on
and a RED-SHOULDERED HAWK in Tinmouth on Oct. 5. Single OSPREYS were observed
in Windsor on the 5th, Shelburne and Thetford on the 8th. BALD EAGLES were
reported from Sunset Ridge on Mt. Mansfield on Oct. 3 and Windsor on the 5th.
Surprisingly, no shorebirds were reported from the Champlain Valley. At Lake
Bomoseen on Oct. 5 were 2 SOLITARY SANDPIPERS and 2 WILSON'S (COMMON) SNIPE.
Two PECTORAL SANDPIPERS afforded close views at the Pompy manure piles in
Norwich on Oct. 8.
Gull reports were few but included one 2nd-winter LITTLE GULL and 300
BONAPARTE'S GULLS off Grand Isle on Oct. 5, and a single adult LITTLE GULL in
the same area on the 8th. On Lake Bomoseen, 21 RING-BILLED GULLS were
on Oct. 5.
The autumn landbird migration continues to be unspectacular, but featured
reported appearances of several later fall migrant species. Always a good
in Vermont, a RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER was reported from DCWMA on Oct. 6. Two
SWAINSON'S THRUSHES in Brookline on Oct. 5 were the only thrushes reported.
RUBY-CROWNED KINGLETS are much in evidence, with reports from Brookline on Oct
5, So. Burlington on the 6th, 4 in Norwich on the 8th, and 3 in Thetford also
on the 8th. Among warblers, an ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER in Brookline on Oct. 5
was noteworthy. A BLACK-THROATED BLUE WARBLER was seen in Leicester on the
9th, and 2 PALM WARBLERS were in Thetford on the 8th. WHITE-CROWNED SPARROWS
were right on schedule, with 4 reported from Brookline and several in Windsor
on Oct. 5, and 2 in Thetford on Oct. 8. DARK-EYED JUNCOS made first seasonal
appearances at several feeders and were reported from Brrokline, So.
Burlington, Norwich, and Thetford. A late BALTIMORE ORIOLE was reported from
Grand Isle on Oct. 8. An EASTERN MEADOWLARK was observed in N. Ferrisburg on
Oct. 5. Boreal finches appear to be scarce so far, with PURPLE FINCHES
reported from Brookline and Norwich, and small numbers of EVENING GROSBEAKS
heard overhead in Woodstock.
Thanks to the following contributors whose observations are cited above:
George Clark, Michael Cosgrove, C. J. Frankiewicz, Spencer and Doug Hardy,
David Hoag, Sherry Mahady, Bryan Pfeiffer, Roy Pilcher, Rick Renaud, Chris
Rimmer, Bill Shepard, Shelagh Smith, Ruth Stewart, Allan Strong, and Sharon
This message is also available by phone recording: call 802-457-1053 and press
3. This will put you into a menu where you will be directed to press 5 to
the RBA. If you have any interesting birds to report, you can leave a message
by pressing 6, or you can send your sightings to the RBA via e-mail at:
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Chris Rimmer, Kent McFarland, Roz Renfrew
VT RBA Compilers
Vermont Institute of Natural Science
27023 Church Hill Road
Woodstock, VT 05091
802-457-2779 ext 120