WIR 3/30-4/5

Wednesday 3/30: Fox Sparrow and nothing else exciting at BBN.

Thursday 3/31: Forest Grove started fairly quiet beyond some phoebes but an odd chip made me turn around as I headed back from the landfill. After a bit of a run-around, it turned out to be bright Palm Warbler. Back near the houses, I then had a singing Pine. Detoured along the edge of Purgatory and got one on the Waltham side as well.


Friday 4/1: RC Kinglet, 3 Fox Sparrows, and the usual early spring stuff at College Pond.

Saturday 4/2: Started at Meriam’s and Kaveski, which had the usual but no new sparrows. Rain picked up right as I finished, so tried School St, Nine Acre, and the res (all nothing) before giving up.

Sunday 4/3: Snow

Monday 4/4: Snow

Tuesday 4/5: Managed a quick stop on Pelham Island Rd, Killdeer, cowbirds, and a few teal were highlights. Plus a few swallows made it through.

WIR 3/23-3/29

Wednesday 3/23: Poked around Nine Acre with not much more than a Pied-billed Grebe.

Thursday 3/24: Traffic led me to Flint’s, so walked around a bit, nothing unexpected.

Friday 3/25: Bit too damp but the usual ducks and Tree Swallows along Pelham Island Rd.

Saturday 3/26: 4 Snipe at Waltham St. Two Kestrels at Dunback. Clay-colored still at Arlington Res. DC Cormorant at the res.

Sunday 3/27: Fairly quiet at Great Meadows. Likely otter and then one the Virginia Rails eventually started calling at my feet. Decided to work Bedford at bit. Started with swans and Mallards at Fawn Lake (not sure how I didn’t have Mallard yet), then stopped at the Hanscom trails where I had a Pileated among other things, getting the overall list into the 70s. Nothing at Hobbs Brook, the ducks at the res weren’t in a good spot but a breeding plumaged loon was more than worthwhile.

Monday 3/28: Too rainy more or less.

Tuesday 3/29: Looped Nine Acre without much until an Osprey flew over as I was pulling out of Nashawtuc. TV over the road a minute later and then a couple Rusties on Water Row (Wayland side).


Couple photos of the incredible Yellow-billed Loon from Race Point last weekend:

That's quite the bill

LoonsCenter with Common on the left, Red-throated on the right.


And a couple of the Common Gull:


Common Gull

WIR 3/16-3/22

Wednesday 3/16: Nothing exciting at Nine Acre or in Wayland.

Thursday 3/17: Same old at Forest Grove.

Friday 3/18: Same at BBN.

Saturday 3/19: Woodcocks and a Fox Sparrow at BBN after the loon.

Sunday 3/20: Started by walking to the duck ponds and back. Phoebe at Lot 1, Tree Swallows and 2 Turkey Vultures at Rock Meadow, and then a catbird at the West Meadow on the way back made it mostly worthwhile. Still nice(ish), so went looking for geese without any luck (but more vultures and a herd of 7 deer at School St). Same flock of Ring-necks and scaup at the res, nothing at Waltham St.

Monday 3/21: Snow…

Tuesday 3/22: Tree Swallows and the usual at Forest Grove. Two Gadwall at Norumbega.

WIR 3/9-3/15

Wednesday 3/9: Quiet at Forest Grove.

Thursday 3/10: Singing creepers and Fox Sparrow at College Pond.

Friday 3/11: Flint’s had mergansers and stuff. Moderate variety at Nine Acre, although nothing particularly noteworthy. Ring-necks and teal on Pelham Island Rd at lunchtime.

Saturday 3/12: Six shovelers on the res, Tree Swallows at Great Meadows, and something in Winthrop.

Sunday 3/13: GW Teal and a good 300ish Ring-necks on the res.

Monday 3/14: Fox Sparrow at Dunback.

Tuesday 3/15: Ton of Tree Swallows at Wayland Town Building. More of the same in a quick scan of the res on the way home.

WIR 3/2-3/8

Wednesday 3/2: Too rainy more or less but it brightened on the way to work, so I stopped for 30 seconds on Pelham Island Rd, where a Merlin was drying off. Eagle over the res on the way home.

Thursday 3/3: Round Hill for a change. Too cold and fairly birdless but 2 Gadwall popped out of Pantry Brook. Nothing along Water Row, turkey running around the gas station across the street from the office.

Friday 3/4: Riverwalk was dead. Gadwall at Norumbega.

Saturday 3/5: Indoors at the Nymphfest all day but a Turkey Vulture flying around on the way back from lunch was a first of year.

Sunday 3/6: Opened the hotel door to about 8 Bohemians (and a Cedar). Pileated on the way back from lunch today. Made a very brief stop at Turner’s Falls on the way home but the mass of gulls was on the far side of the river and I wasn’t up for sorting through them at a distance.


Monday 3/7: Nothing at BBN.

Tuesday 3/8: Fox Sparrow singing and presumably the same eagle at Great Meadows.

WIR 2/24-3/1

Wednesday 2/24: 7 Lesser Scaup in close at the res, too dank and foggy to see much else.

Thursday 2/25: Nothing different at Lindentree.

Friday 2/26: Red-wings found the yard finally. Too windy at Dunback.

Saturday 2/27: Ducks were out of sight at the res. Two Wood Ducks, 5 shoveler, few others at Arlington Res plus 2 Killdeer. GC Kinglets, a coot, and a few other things at Sandy Beach. No parking at Spy Pond, nothing at the duck ponds, Killdeer at the field station (70).

Sunday 2/28: BBN was fairly quiet beyond 2 cowbirds along the parkway (71 for the winter). Killdeer and nothing else at Waltham St. Ring-neck flock wasn’t in the best part of the res to scan, nothing looping out to School St.

Monday 2/29: Kingfisher, eagle, 14 GW Teal, 30ish Ring-necks at Great Meadows (plus a few hundred blackbirds).

Tuesday 3/1: Killdeer and not much else at Forest Grove.

WIR 2/17-2/23

Wednesday 2/17: Finally got a Ruddy on the river walk, although nothing else notable.

Thursday 2/18: 60ish robins and nothing else exciting at Cow Common and the Wayland gardens.

Friday 2/19: First yard grackle of the year. BBN had the Yellow-rump and Fox Sparrow (presuming the same one since December) along with another grackle and a Sharpie.

Saturday 2/20: Started at Horn Pond once the showers fell apart. Apparently just missed an eagle but had a bunch of grackles, a Red-wing singing, and a shoveler. Mary Cummings Park was quiet beyond a flock of waxwings. Couldn’t find the Ring-neck flock at the res.

Sunday 2/21: Started at Great Meadows. Lots of Red-wings, Marsh Wren, and flyover Killdeer but not a ton else. Continued to Meriam’s (eagle) and Kaveski (raven and 3 coyotes) before School St (75 geese, 37 crows), Nine Acre (geese in lousy spots), and the res (half the Ring-neck flock plus a handful of scaup and 5 Ruddy).

Monday 2/22: Ended up in Wayland after trying to avoid traffic. No shrike or Rough-leg and the presumed Pileated calling didn’t quite cooperate. Nice flock of blackbirds but nothing exciting among them.

Tuesday 2/23: Forest Grove had a few blackbirds (no Rusties) and lots of ducks plus a Swamp Sparrow and 2 GC Kinglets.

372 and 373/556

Catching up a bit. Was hoping for 372/556 back on the 31st with the Smith’s Longspur at Bear Creek, but no bird found. Nice Short-eared and Kestrel made it worth the effort at least. With the afternoon free and halfway to the north shore, I zipped up to Gloucester. Awful sun or big crowds had me moving to Andrew’s fairly quickly. After a few minutes at the end of the driveway, I moved to the end of the road. A couple other birders were there and I overheard some muttering about puffin. A few minutes later, there was a gray-faced alcid with a bright looking bill in my scope. A bit far, took a little while to feel totally confident after the fact, but state #372. Other than one brief look a couple minutes later, it disappeared. Fortunately, the Common Murre in close at the other side was nice for all.

The following weekend was the first BBC winter pelagic. I got talked into signing up midweek and even with storms on either side, the weekend was good. The trip ran Sunday to let the seas die down and the roads to clear. Prebright and early, I drove down. After a bit of a late start (get better Ida!), we headed out on totally flat seas. It didn’t take long for lots of scoters, Long-tailed Ducks, and kittiwakes to be seen.




Razorbills started soon after.


We got further out and a few Common Murres appeared, a couple came close enough for good photos.


Along with some gannets.



We passed a trawler and got a good number of gulls including Iceland and Lesser Black-backed.

Iceland Gull

Sometime around this, what was technically bird of the day flew by: Sooty Shearwater. Distant views, but very good for the season.

Sooty Shearwater

As we were ready to head back, a shout of Fulmar went up. It took almost 15 minutes to chase down, but eventually we got excellent views (and apparently a second bird buzzed through as well). My target for the trip, and about the most overdue bird I had in the northeast (12th tubenose in state, after Barolo Shearwater, Black-capped Petrel, and a dozen White-faced Storm-Petrels among others).



We also had an interesting Iceland Gull around here, still debating a nominate.

Iceland Gull

On the way back, we made another stop for a puffin (poor views earlier), which helped me feel confident about the Andrews bird.


Back to shore, we stopped off Monomoy for a few minutes to take in the huge flocks of ducks (mostly eider) and the seals on the beach.



And back to the dock in time to drive home in the light. Great day.