Winter Bird Walk

January 9, 2011

8:00 AM

With a wind chill temperature of 9 degrees, we set out to find birds in the southern zone of the park near the landfill. The walk down yielded some White-throated Sparrows and a Mockingbird watching us from above. In the water were several Canada Geese, a Bufflehead or two, a raft of Scaup, Ruddy Ducks, Gadwall and some Black Ducks. There was also one Snow Goose among the Canada Geese.

As we watched the Snow Goose, someone called out that a Northern Harrier was flying over the landfill. We watched for a few minutes as he appeared, disappeared and then reappeared from behind the landfill. We continued watching as the bird flew directly overhead, probably not more than 30 feet above us. It was breathtaking.

We then carpooled over to the Orchard Beach parking lot and ambled up the hill to Hunter Island. On the way we stopped for a nice assortment of winter birds, several Chickadees, Titmouse, Nuthatches and Red Bellies were nearby. Juncos foraged along with more White-throated Sparrows and a bright Cardinal. At Hunter Island were several Brant, Scaup, Mallards, Black Ducks and a small raft of American Wigeon. On the way out Red-breasted Mergansers floated at the end of the boardwalk at Orchard Beach. We walked back to the cars satisfied that we had seen a nice variety of birds for a cold winter day. It was s great day to be outside.

Oliver gets a closer look at the one Snow Goose. Not shown, Billy, who was out photographing the bird.

Glen and Dennis checking out the Scaup, Bufflehead, Ruddy Ducks, Canada Geese, Gadwall and Black Ducks in the nearby water.

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