Friday, November 8, 2013

MA - local shrike and coot - 11/08

A raw day with light snow flurries at dawn and, as such, couldn't be more contrasting to yesterday's balmy south-westerlies. My first major stop was the bluebird 'hotspot' at Turner's Falls Airfield. No bluebirds were present but teed up high in a maple, and quite literally the first bird I saw, my first Northern Shrike of the fall. Like most of the shrikes I've seen locally it was fast moving and didn't linger at all - it was present for all of two minutes! I did what I could for record shots as it 'swept' from perch to perch before it moved off down the runway of the airfield.

Northern Shrike - Turner's Falls, Franklin Co., MA. November 8th, 2013.
Turner's Falls power canal had a nice gathering of Canada Geese (700+) and a drake Gadwall but little else until I noticed a cracking American Coot at my feet! I think I'd been so engrossed in scanning for raptors and going through the geese that I'd completely overlooked the closest bird to me. The American Coot was also my first (locally) of the fall.

Despite a decent amount of scanning this morning I couldn't dig up a Golden Eagle or Rough-legged Hawk but with raw winds in the northern quarter and squally showers, it certainly felt like a raptor of that ilk should have appeared.

 American Coot - Turner's Falls power canal, Franklin Co., MA. November 8th, 2013.





Larry said...

Shrike and coot are great birds for the day...certainly seemed like a good day for a golden eagle and/or rough legged...perhaps tomorrow?

Lindy said...

I happened to look out the door at the bird feeders yesterday in Winchendon MA, and on the top of the ornamental cherry tree was a bird that I had never seen before. I looked it up and identified it as a Northern Shrike. No other birds came back to the feeders for about a half an hour. I have not seen it again; good thing for the chickadees, juncos, and sparrows!