Notes about birds, birding and travel from the Pioneer Valley in Western Massachusetts.
Monday, March 24, 2014
MA - blue snow
Yet another frigid start to the day (14 deg F/ - 10 deg C). Had a quick run down to Barton Cove finding most the recently reported species with the exception of the Redhead. New for me was an American Coot and eight very poor looking Tree Swallows - certainly a sobering sight to watch these poor migrants hawking for insects and picking from the surface of the ice. The survival rate for this first wave of migrants cannot be very high.
Looked like a puff-ball on wings.
Tree Swallows - over the ice, Barton Cove, Franklin Co., MA. March 24th, 2014.
With yesterday's Whately Pink-footed Goose still very much on my mind, I headed south hoping to find it in the same fields that it was reported yesterday. It turned out to be a classic 'wild goose chase', the bird was apparently being seen in Hadley unbeknown to me as I drove south. But in essence it didn't really matter. As much as I love geese, I have seen Pink-footed in the 'Valley' before and I actually became much more entranced with a tight flock of blue-phase Snow Geese moving in and out of the Canada flock. The birds came and went, seemingly quite skittish and far more easily spooked than the Canadas. I never did see the Pink-footed Goose but went home more than happy with these blue snows.
Blue Snow Geese (6) - Whately, west side of River Road, Franklin Co., MA. March 24th, 2014.