I know my blood has probably thinned a little by living in California lately but... it was actually mighty chilly out at the waterbird shack this morning! With winds reaching nearly 20 mph out of the northeast, the temp in the mid-40s was a slight slap to the face.
We couldn't have been at the shack for more than 20 minutes before Adam pointed out a dark bird bearing down on... on us! Cruising right up and over the shack was a young PARASITIC JAEGER. After fumbling with my camera for a few seconds, I managed a couple of crummy photos:
The dabbler show was much reduced today; we only had single digits of a few species. For the first time this year, our WHITE-WINGED SCOTER number hit the double digits; 10 were seen with 9 of those in the first hour.
You'll find that a high-flying flock of loons here, like this, will often be RED-THROATED. We ended up with 8 today including these 5:
Any guesses on what species was the most numerous today? Red-necked Grebe or Canada Goose, those were the two close contenders. While you ponder that, I'll skip to the shorebirds. Today may have been our worst day in several weeks in terms of shorebird diversity; only 4 species were tallied. I have good faith you can ID this shorebird?
If you think it's IDable as a BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPER, Adam is going to get an earful from me tomorrow. Yes, we had a BUFF-BREASTED around the point much of today. This species hasn't been as numerous this fall as in the past and has been increasingly hard for me to conjure up from the underworld; some days I'm just too tired to repeat the incantations for so long.
Our most numerous species today, like yesterday, was RED-NECKED GREBE (424) but the 370 CANADA GEESE gave them a run for their money. Mixed in with the CANG were two CACKLING GEESE.
I walked the woods for a few minutes after the count and ended up with a paltry 7 species of warblers including a YELLOW WARBLER and this CAPE MAY WARBLER:
The wind has died down and the ominous clouds have since cleared. With a high pressure sitting on us tonight, the temperatures are supposed to dip into the mid-30s and frost is expected. It will be a chilly morning for Jason (who will be filling in for me) and other birders but I hope something stellar shows itself.