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VTBIRD  March 2011

VTBIRD March 2011

Subject:

Re: Long-tailed Ducks, Tree Swallow, Herring Gull, Golden Eagle

From:

MARIE HEMEON <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Vermont Birds <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 31 Mar 2011 20:06:09 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (147 lines)

Great day Roy. I wish I could have made it out but, other duties got in the way. This makes me wish I had all the more! Kevin
  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Roy Pilcher<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
  To: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
  Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 7:56 PM
  Subject: [VTBIRD] Long-tailed Ducks, Tree Swallow, Herring Gull, Golden Eagle


  With an anticipated change in the wind direction from north to south, I
  decided to spend some time at the Hubbardton Battlefield to see if I could
  catch an early migrating raptor or two!
  I took the long way around, first checking West Rutland, the Castleton
  River, then Lake Bomoseen, both the Castleton section and the Hubbardton
  section before circling back to the battlefield.
  The lake remains frozen except where the water inflows in the north and
  where outflows in the south.
  The two, (apparent pair) of Long-tailed Ducks were at the south channel
  where the channel merges into the main body of the lake at the ice edge. They
  were both feeding, (diving), and passing the time but ever alert.
  The lone Tree Swallow was at the north end seeking some insect hatch while
  flying low over the open water. The Herring Gull was on the ice in the same
  area observed swallowing what appeared to be a large catfish.
  The Hubbardton Battlefield is bound by a north/south ridge of the Taconics
  to the east. The Adirondacks are clearly visible to the west. The view to
  the south is extensive also to the north.
  At least 3 Turkey Vultures had been observed coursing the area flying at a
  pretty constant altitude. When the Golden Eagle was first observed through
  binoculars to the south my first impression was another Turkey Vulture but t
  he dihedral was less. The bird then apparently caught an updraft south of
  Mount Zion and spiraled ever higher. I observed it with the scope first at
  20 power then finally 60 power before it headed north.
  Some ventral observations: The bird was all brown, no banner marks, with
  some lighter "golden" patches visible. The flight feathers were grayish brown
   contrasting with the under wing coverts that were the same color as the
  body. In a glide the wrists were well forward of the head. The bird was
  observed to flex once. Time of observation: 1:00 p.m.
   
  Location: West Rutland
  Observation date: 3/31/11
  Notes: Grabowski Farm along Castleton River.
  Number of species: 10

  Canada Goose 4
  Mallard 5
  Common Merganser 20
  Rock Pigeon 2
  Blue Jay 1
  American Crow 4
  Black-capped Chickadee 1
  American Robin 3
  Red-winged Blackbird 13
  Common Grackle 2

  Location: Castleton
  Observation date: 3/31/11
  Notes: Three of the toms were strutting tails all fanned out.
  Number of species: 4

  Wild Turkey 20
  Killdeer 1
  Song Sparrow 1
  Red-winged Blackbird 3

  Location: Lake Bomoseen-Castleton (2360 acres)
  Observation date: 3/31/11
  Notes: Observations made from 4 stations around the lake. Very limited
  open water. Canada Geese in large flock overhead moving north. Long-tailed
  Ducks diving and feeding together, digiscoped.
  Number of species: 16

  Canada Goose 150
  Wood Duck 2
  Mallard 12
  Long-tailed Duck 2 An apparent pair.
  Hooded Merganser 2
  Common Merganser 28
  Ring-billed Gull 3
  Mourning Dove 1
  Blue Jay 2
  American Crow 7
  Tufted Titmouse 2
  American Robin 6
  Song Sparrow 2
  Red-winged Blackbird 9
  Common Grackle 7
  House Finch 2

  Location: Lake Bomoseen/Hubbardton Marshes IBA
  Observation date: 3/31/11
  Notes: Observations made from 2 stations. A narrow channel of open
  water at the very north end extending about 100 m. Rest of lake frozen.
  Single Tree Swallow observed low over water while scoping ducks. Herring Gull
  observed gulping down what appeared to be an unduly large catfish.
  Number of species: 13

  Canada Goose 22
  Wood Duck 2
  American Black Duck 9
  Mallard 4
  Hooded Merganser 4
  Common Merganser 3
  Herring Gull 1
  Blue Jay 1
  American Crow 3
  Tree Swallow 1
  Song Sparrow 2
  Red-winged Blackbird 3
  Common Grackle 2


  Location: Hubbardton Battlefield
  Observation date: 3/31/11
  Notes: Observations made from the high point of the battlefield. Wind
  had shifted to the south after several days of north wind. Impending storm!
  Golden Eagle, (adult), observed taking advantage of an updraft to the
  south of Zion Hill then spiraling very high before heading north.
  Number of species: 9

  Turkey Vulture 3
  Red-tailed Hawk 1
  Golden Eagle 1
  Northern Flicker 1
  American Crow 8
  Common Raven 3
  Eastern Bluebird 1
  Red-winged Blackbird 3
  American Goldfinch 1

  Location: West Rutland Marsh IBA
  Observation date: 3/31/11
  Notes: Replenishing feeders in anticipation of the Nor'easter!
  Number of species: 5

  Common Raven 1
  Black-capped Chickadee 4
  American Tree Sparrow 1
  Song Sparrow 2
  Red-winged Blackbird 3



  Cheers,
  Roy Pilcher
  The Gables at East Mountain, Rutland, Vermont

  Speaking the same language.

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