Sunday, February 24, 2013

February 24 - Gyrfalcon

Without plans today I decided to visit Jones Beach, but first I decided to stop at Gilgo Beach as rumor had it that a rare arctic visitor had been found earlier this week & re-seen on Saturday.  As luck would have it as soon as I parked my car and took a look at a Peregrine perched on an Osprey nesting plalform Tom Burke pulled alongside and said the Gyrfalcon was being seen on the other side of the parking area.

Once in the right spot the Gyr was seen on another Osprey nesting platform farther out.

While viewing the bird it eventually flew up high and while still in my scope view I saw it kill a Black Duck.  We then watched the Gyr have lunch before flying onto a closer still platform.

Here's a few smartphone images to enlarge...but they'll get very blurry   :(

For images taken with a real camera, See Corey Finger's pics too !

View some amazing Images from South Dakota taken by Terry Sohl

Here is a range map, prepared by Terry.  Click to enlarge.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

February 23 - Redpolls

I had a first-time visit to my bird feeders today with a six-pack of Common Redpolls on this day-long rain storm

click to enlarge

Sunday, February 10, 2013

February 10 - Somerset County & Great Swamp NWR

I started out with Cackling Goose on a nearly frozen Amwell Pond, but I dipped on the nearby Lapland Longspur.  Later I has Rough-Legged Hawk along Rattlesnake Road.

Lastly, I stopped at the Great Swamp and had another Rough-Legged Hawk and the regular Barred Owl.

Monday, February 04, 2013

February 4 - Overpeck Park's Pink-Footed Goose

After making a quick stop here yesterday and turning up empty, I returned here before work and found the bird on the water.  The bird was quite close and afforded fine looks through my scope.  While the namesake feet were not seen this time, the diagnostic bill was seen well.

Sunday, February 03, 2013

February 3 - Long Island birding

This morning friends & I went out to Suffolk County's Blydenburgh Park in Smithtown.  Our target was the Tufted Duck which has been found here earlier this week.  Although most of the lake's water is frozen over from the recent cold snap a few sections remain open.  It was in these pockets that we found the group  of Ring-Necked Ducks and amongst them was the target bird of Tufted Duck.

This was just my 3rd sighting of this uncommon visitor to North America. My first was back in 2001 in Rumson, New Jersey and that was followed, many years later, by a 2008 sighting in Providence, Rhode Island.

On the return trip back west we stopped at Jones Beach.  Here while at the Coast Guard Station we had nice looks at the beautifully-colored plumage of a Lapland Longspur.

Alas, we could not spot the near-adult Snowy Owl which has been here for some weeks now.  Note to self -- don't try to find a white bird on the beach after a snowfall...