Wednesday, May 2, 2018

MA - Solitary Sandpiper and more in the first days of May

Solitary Sandpiper - Gill, Franklin Co., MA. May 2nd, 2018.

Fresh back from a wonderful grouse tour of Colorado and straight into a major wave of spring migration. The 1st brought two Cliff Swallows hawking over Barton Cove along with four other species of swallow. In the afternoon, some 26 Double-crested Cormorants dropped into Barton Cove along with a dozen Ring-billed Gulls, all of the latter being first and second summer birds.  A Winter Wren sang from a traditional territory on North Cross Road with Blue-headed Vireo, Brown Thrasher and Field Sparrow, Pine and Black-throated Green Warblers being among other noteworthy species.

Double-crested Cormorants - arriving at Barton Cove, Gill, Franklin Co., MA. May 1st, 2018.

The 2nd was always going to be a warm day, even from first light and temperatures soared to the mid-80s by late afternoon. The result was immediate with a broad wave of new birds for the year; House Wren, Yellow Warbler, Ovenbird, Eastern Kingbird, Baltimore Oriole and Chimney Swift all arrived in numbers. At Barton Cove, Black-throated Green, Pine and Magnolia Warbler foraged alongside a larger flock of 15-20 Yellow-rumped Warblers. They all fed around a roosting Barred Owl, seemingly oblivious to the action going on around it!

Exceedingly low water levels at Barton Cove saw the first notable shorebirds of the year with 3 Least Sandpipers and 2 Greater Yellowlegs and preceded earlier in the morning by a surprise Solitary Sandpiper in a small puddle off Main Road in Gill.  

Barred Owl - Barton Cove, Gill, Franklin Co., MA. May 2nd, 2018.

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