Since I had the day off today, why not see some birds ? It's certainly better than returning gifts !
I started out by going to the town of Sea Cliff, near Glen Cove, for a rare visitor in the form of a Black Guillemot. Fortunately this was a 'drive-up' bird as we saw it immediately upon parking. This was good news for us ans we had intended to spend a few hours waiting for the bird to show, because it's patterns over the few days since it's discovery was that it came in during the later morning.
We were lucky to get great views of the bird because it was just about 100 yards off-shore. Also the bird was quite actively feeding at first, but then settled down where it stayed up on the water for extended periods of time.
Afterwards we went to the nearby Bayville beaches where we had nice looks at Common Goldeneye and Horned Grebes, along with several dozen White-Winged Scoters.
Our last stop was at Saint John's Pond near Cold Spring Harbor in the town of Cold Spring. Here too we had a drive-up with a male Eurasian Wigeon.
A good way to end the year as I do not expect to get out again before I make a New Year's morning trip to Montauk Point in search of alcids & seagulls.