WIR 7/12-7/18

Wednesday 7/12: Didn’t get out for the first time in ages.

Thursday 7/13: Quick loop of BBN had a Hooded Merganser.

Friday 7/14: Was too nice at Great Meadows. Couple YT Vireos singing and a Monarch were nice but thought that would be it until a Least Bittern flew right past me as I was walking back.

Saturday 7/15: Hop Brook/Desert/Assabet loop had the usual. Meriam’s after had a first of fall Solitary.

Sunday 7/16: Nothing at the res. A few peep at School St, which I had to wait 20 minutes in a downpour for, then noticed the tornado alert as soon as I got out of the car, so I bailed pretty quickly.

Monday 7/17: Nothing much at Ricci Farm.

Tuesday 7/18: Usual at Weston Station Pond.

WIR 7/5-7/11

Wednesday 7/5: Usual birds at BBN. Lots of Spot-winged Gliders among other odes, Silver-spotted Skippers among other butterflies, and a whole family of Short-tailed Weasels.

Thursday 7/6: Nothing of note at Cookson or the river.

Friday 7/7: At least one Red-billed Tiger Beetle at Prospect Hill. Swift River Cruiser about the only other thing of note. Nothing on the res on the way home.

Saturday 7/8: Concord butterfly count. We changed up the route a bit this year and hit spots that actually had butterflies instead of overgrown brush. Still wasn’t great but we had about 20 species instead of the barely 10 last year. Also decent numbers of odes, an antlion, the wasp mimic robber fly Ceraturgus fasciatus, and 3 mantisflies. Broad-wings were about it for birds of note.

Sunday 7/9: Started at Squantum where the rail wasn’t calling but a few shorebirds were around. Went to Nut Island for Wilson’s Storm-Petrel next (wish I had seen the Whimbrel report from the spit by then), then to Ponkapoag. Worked the dam a bit and eventually got a single Attenuated Bluet, which I believe is my 30th Enallagma. Also a couple Scarlet Bluets but not too much else. An eagle flew over with a fish and kingbird escort. Started down the boardwalk but it looked to be getting hairy, so I gave up and went back to the dam without finding anything different.

Monday 7/10: Too rainy, so Least Sandpipers at Nine Acre were the only things of interest on a pond/farm field loop.

Tuesday 7/11: More or less the usual at Hanscom, a few FOY butterflies included Dun Skipper and Great Spangled Fritillary.

WIR 6/28-7/4

Wednesday 6/28: Between rain and some work stuff only walked Hardy Pond and Graverson, nothing of note.

Thursday 6/29: Quick run around Dunback had FOY meadowhawk, Atomosia puella, and nothing much in birds.

Friday 6/30: Usual at Weston Station Pond.

Saturday 7/1: Millennium was too foggy to see the poles where the martin had been hanging out, then probably too sunny by the time I looped around. A few Savannahs, not too much else. Went to the Blue Hills to look for pygmy clubtails next, although I suspect too late. It had clouded up again a bit, so walked a ways waiting for it to clear without finding too much. Got back and walked the stream but just a couple whitetails and jewelwings. Went back up and looped Hillside Pond, Carolina Saddlebags and an emerald the most interesting. Pulled in at Norumbega on the way home, nothing there. Traffic looked bad on 128, so went down to Main St and Bear Hill Rd. Res started the usual midsummer cormorants and geese but halfway around something ternlike flew by. I jumped out of the car fast and found 3 Commons! Watched those for half an hour or so, then took a quick loop to Flint’s (nothing) and Hardy (Herring Gull) just in case there were more around.

Sunday 7/2: Weather didn’t look good for Alan’s ode walk. Started with a check of the res, no terns but a loon was nice. Heard Pond was next and had nothing on it and nothing of note at the swamp. Wasn’t raining (much), so gave Water Row a walk. Osprey with young at the nest and a Brown Thrasher by the hunter lot was a nice surprise. Quick check of Flint’s on the way home didn’t have anything.

Monday 7/3: Nothing that I could see in the fog at the res. Couple gulls, PB Grebe calling about it at Great Meadows.

Tuesday 7/4: Couple Osprey at the res. Nothing obvious at Spy Pond or the Mystic Lakes so decided to look for storm-petrels at Winthrop Beach. Succeeded there, then decided I should get them for Deer Island too. Parade either about to start or just finished, so I decided that wasn’t the best idea. Lewis Lake had a few swallows, a Black Duck family, and a few Least Terns. Belle Isle had ibis and lots of shorebirds including a few dowitchers, yellowlegs, and Least Sandpipers.

WIR 6/21-6/27

Wednesday 6/21: Looped the hill and powerlines at Hobbs Brook. Field Sparrow, creeper, towhee, Prairie, etc. Had enough time to walk Shade St too and had another creeper and a redstart.

Thursday 6/22: Night-Herons at Cookson and the square but little else.

Friday 6/23: Speculatively tried the trail across from Tanner’s Brook to the ranger station at Minuteman in case there were more sapsuckers around. Not much beyond a bluebird, so had time for the trails around Flint’s, which were about the same.

Saturday 6/24: Technically ran a BBC trip, although with no one joining. Started at Fitchburg Res, which was fogged in but one loon was calling as was a Yellow-rump and a few other things. Sun was almost out at Blood Hill. Not too much on the trail up beyond a couple sapsuckers. Sat at the top a bit and had 3 crossbills fly over. Looped a bit and tried to cut back to the trail, failed miserably and ended up bushwhacking through the mountain laurel for a good mile downhill before finding the trail almost at the parking lot. Raining too much for anything else.

Sunday 6/25: On foot day, Falzone to West Meadow then down Concord Ave to the duck ponds (dipping into Rock Meadow mostly to avoid traffic). Back through Rock Meadow, BBN, and out at Brookhaven. Birding was pretty quiet, only 49 species. Four were new for the nonmotorized year list, so I made the June target. Did have a few FOY odes (all common), a handful of butterflies, and a Long-tailed Weasel that didn’t cooperate for photos.

Monday 6/26: In office day, so got out to Heard Farm. Unfortunately it was pretty quiet, lots of Bobolinks, 3 Osprey, a hummingbird, and that was about it. Nothing much at the pond or swamp either.

Tuesday 6/27: Somehow didn’t rain at Arlington Great Meadows. Very distant calling YB Cuckoo was nice, not too much otherwise. Holopogon was good as always.

WIR 6/14-6/20

Wednedsay 6/14: Stopped at Farm Meadow to pick up Bobolink for the ‘commute’, usual otherwise. Had enough time to check the river at Nine Acre, also finally adding Spotted Sandpiper but only a single Barn and Tree Swallow.

Thursday 6/15: Habitat survey was very quiet (like Minuteman on Sunday, trees were very noisily dripping). Hardy Pond and the res didn’t have much after.

Friday 6/16: Family of Peregrines and GC Flycatcher (finally) at Fresh Pond.

Saturday 6/17: Started at Great Meadows in slightly better than expected weather. Other than the grebe still singing, it was pretty quiet and eventually started pouring, fortunately while I was in the woods. Slowed down enough back at the parking lot that David and I decided to try Brewster’s Woods, but it picked up again and was too loud to hear across the river. Two loons at Flint’s, nothing at the res on the way home.

Sunday 6/18: Squantum run. Clapper Rail was calling a lot but remained my only heard only in state. Also 4 Glossy Ibis, a Willet landing on the power lines and poles, and the Piping Plovers were scopeable from the hummock. Nickerson Rock Park had a Red-shoulder and a couple redstarts. Thought about a couple other stops but ended up at Draw Seven to pick up Common Tern for June 2023 in Middlesex. Also added Fish Crow for Somerville.

Monday 6/19: Hartwell area, no Acadian but walked up to Scott right after he found the sapsucker nest. Which was around the corner from where a Short-tailed Weasel had popped up, unfortunately and surprisingly I couldn’t spish it back out. Usual stuff otherwise.

Tuesday 6/20: Most of the expected but nothing beyond that through the woods at BBN.

WIR 6/7-6/13

Wednesday 6/7: Pretty quiet at Hanscom other than a near pure White Admiral.

Thursday 6/8: Woodcock at the West Meadow, not much at Falzone.

Friday 6/9: 4 BC Night-Herons at Cookson, nothing of note at the square.

Saturday 6/10: Ode walk in Carlisle, so started in Chelmsford. Got 30ish new species, which puts that past 50. Alder Flycatcher and kestrel the most interesting. Walk itself wasn’t too exciting, weather not great but we did have an Eastern Red Damsel eventually.

Sunday 6/11: Minuteman survey was a breeze, actually found the points without much effort. Bit quiet, maybe from the rain yesterday. Then zipped down to Lakeville and eventually got moderate views of a couple Midland Clubtails. Not a ton else, although I did get 6 Plymouth county birds and had a good chat with Blair. The early start was catching up with me, so headed home but decided to check Healthpoint quickly. Tons of bluets, a Cyrano Darner, and a few Amber-winged Spreadwings.

Monday 6/12: Figured it was unlikely so not surprised with no Least Terns at Great Meadows. No luck with Least Bittern either but did hear a couple rails and most of the regular stuff.

Tuesday 6/13: Rock Meadow survey was quiet. Stopped at BBN for a few and had an Ovenbird and Green Heron with a frog.

WIR 5/31-6/6

Wednesday 5/31: Orchard Oriole at the Meriam’s/Kaveski line, no Alders or much else though. Grass was too wet at the back and four hours later I’m still sneezing.

Thursday 6/1: Tried for any lingering warblers at Mt. Auburn. Blackpoll pretty quickly but then very little else until passing Spectacle on the way to the car when a Northern Waterthrush started singing.

Friday 6/2: No GW Teal at BBN but a couple redstarts and a Barred Owl family were good (and very good to finally confirm the owls).

Saturday 6/3: Not terribly nice but did a Wayland swing. Nothing obvious at Heard Pond, so went to Heard Farm. Kestrel was hunting, lots of Bobolinks and the regulars but nothing much else. Was going to the gardens next but Cow Common was blocked off, so I just went to Sedge Meadow. More of the same there, a pair of Bobolinks the most interesting. Checked the res and Hardy on the way home without anything beyond geese.

Sunday 6/4: Wasn’t quite crappy enough to sit at Great Meadows so started with the Hooded Warbler in Littleton. Moderately cooperative plus a couple other new things there (70 now). Saw a Louisiana Waterthrush spot in Worcester county not too far away, so headed that way. Short walk in and one flew by chipping then eventually sang a bit. Looks good for odes too in nicer weather. Continued to Wachusett Res, where the sun was poking out. Of course that meant not much doing, so I spent a bit of time taking swift shots. A shower eventually passed through but didn’t appear to drop anything in. Checked my month list and saw I was into the 90s and there would be a few possibilities at Bolton Flats, so headed that way. Got Mute Swan along the river and redstart near the parking lot. Walked out and found a few shorebirds which included a Semipalmated Plover, 3 Least Sandpipers, and a Semipalmated Sandpiper (also a county bird!). Since I wasn’t expecting those, a quick check showed that 100 was quite possible. Waded down through the vegetation (the wet spots were dry at least) and got Yellow-throated Vireo (and got excited by a Cooper’s Hawk that looked harrier-ish at a distance), which was 99. Couldn’t dig up any wrens or House Finches or anything else though, even walking a bit on the other side and down to the river along 117. Gave the Bolton Office Park a quick drive through, again no luck but a Carolina Wren was singing right at the 495 ramp, so mission accomplished.

Monday 6/5: No shorebirds at Great Meadows but a singing PB Grebe and a Green Heron were nice.

Tuesday 6/6: Went to Dunback hoping for an Alder. Got one pretty quickly near Clarke, then was surprised by a Least at the intersection. Nothing much out Bacon St, just enough time to get down to the woods. Loud call just as I approached the bridge: “peet-zah!”. Acadian called nonstop for the next 10-15 minutes, although it never showed. ‘Commute’ #249!

WIR 5/24-5/30

Wednesday 5/24: Tennessee, Bay-breasted, lots of turkeys at Habitat.

Thursday 5/25: Nothing at Cookson. East of the square had a few Blackpolls, a Parula, and a tanager.

Friday 5/26: No Acadian in Concord (should have gone yesterday…). Tennessee was a new bird for Concord though, so some compensation.

Saturday 5/27: Went to the coast hoping for a May bird. No luck but not bad. Started at Yirrell Beach which had a Magnolia and redstart or two plus Least Tern (year #200) and oystercatcher. Winthrop Beach had the expected plovers and terns but no turnstone or Sanderling. Greenway/Belle Isle Cemetery had a ton of redstarts, a couple Maggies, a waterthrush, parula, 3 Blackpoll, a RE Vireo, etc. Belle Isle had 7 ibis. Lawn Ave had 2 families of black ducks but no passerines.

Sunday 5/28: Led the Great Meadows walk early. Heard Least Bittern, had a Virginia Rail run across the path, most of the regulars were around. Alan and Cris’s Black-bellied Plovers would have been nice however…

Walked Two Rod Rd after. No boghaunters (one possible) and only one identified ode, which was a very out of habitat Lilypad Clubtail. Also one of the cool wasp-mimicking Syrphids (Temnostoma alterans).

Monday 5/29: Did a central MA swing, although if I realized how windy it was I might have not. High Ridge was moderately birdy, Greater Yellowlegs, Alder Flycatcher about the most interesting. Lots of odes, mostly whitefaces and corporals. Lake Wampanoag had the Canada Warblers I hoped for, Purple Finch, White-throated Sparrow, GC Kinglet, etc. Bugs weren’t great, Elfin Skimmer, another Lilypad Clubtail, and not too much else.

Tuesday 5/30: Nothing out of the expected at Tanner’s Brook. Loon on Flint’s.

WIR 5/17-5/2

Wednesday 5/17: Usual assortment of warblers at Prospect Hill, Prairie the most interesting.

Thursday 5/18: Fairly quiet at College Pond, Bay-breasted and a Northern Waterthrush the best.

Friday 5/19: Mt. Auburn was very good but not great. Mourning, Cape May, multiple Tennessees, couple Blackburnian, Least Flycatcher, bunch of Bay-breasted, Magnolia, etc. Cuckoo calling from the yard as I was getting ready.

Saturday 5/20: Rain held off, so got out to Water Row. Quieter than I hoped but a nighthawk was a nice surprise. Lots of Blue-wings (and a more Golden-winged sounding bird that wouldn’t show). Heard Pond next, very quiet. Still wasn’t raining so over to Great Meadows. Mist started pretty quickly then some heavier rain but I was mostly in the woods by then. Not too much around either, no flyover shorebirds or anything.

Sunday 5/21: Tried a walking big day but with rain overnight and everything clearing yesterday ahead, expectations were low. And still tough to meet, only 56 species (granted I didn’t bother with any ponds since they weren’t worth the extra walking). Did have a few warblers including Canada and Wilson’s, a late-ish White-throat, and a bit more, enough to get to 88 on foot this year.

Monday 5/22: Too windy at Great Meadows but Willow Flycatcher and Bank Swallow were ‘commute’ year birds. Didn’t get to where the Least Bittern had been calling until I didn’t have enough time to actually wait unfortunately and no sign of any gallinule either. Magnolia singing in the yard.

Tuesday 5/23: Prothonotary was singing across the river from Brewster’s Woods (‘commute’ #248!). Also Barred Owl, Magnolia, not a ton else.

WIR 5/10-5/16

Wednesday 5/10: Pileated, Blue-winged, GC Flycatcher, hummer, Veery, etc at Hayden Woods.

Thursday 5/11: Cookson was quiet. Square was fairly quiet too but a BT Blue was somehow a patch bird (180!) and a thrasher was quite nice.

Friday 5/12: Planned on Estabrook but the car felt funny and after circling the block, it was obvious the tire was flat. Decided to leave that for later and walked over to Falzone. Wasn’t great but a decent variety of warblers, FOY tanager, etc. Think 21 were new for the on foot year list.

Saturday 5/13: MBC big day, a bit slow with only 90ish species. WC Sparrow, BB Cuckoo among the highlights.

Sunday 5/14: Decided to do a relaxed bit of target birding in Suffolk which was quite successful. Got a space right at the entrance for McLaughlin Woods. Wandered away from the crowd to start and had a Bay-breasted, Wilson’s, Canada, and 3 BH Vireos pretty quickly. Showed a few people the Bay-breasted then wandered down to chase a Least Flycatcher among others. Found that and a second Wilson’s, then there was a third back at the top. Continued to Chestnut Hill Res. Got out of the car and heard a bunch along the road, so walked that way down to the rink woods. Wilson’s was the most interesting on the way. Ovenbird and Least Flycatcher in the woods. Walked the edge of the reservoir back, which wasn’t too exciting. Then over to the gardens which had very little beyond a House Wren. Got back to the car and heard a high pitched song that seemed interesting. Took 10 minutes to find it, but it was the Cape May I was hoping for. So 3/4 targets (Bay-breasted, Canada, Cape May, missed the more common Chestnut-sided). Decided to give Forest Grove a quick look in case Friday’s Prothonotary had hung around. It didn’t and it was fairly quiet (birdwise, people all over). Did have FOY baskettails and Eastern Forktails and a few birds.

Monday 5/15: Made it to Estabrook. Decent number of warblers including the Bay-breasted I needed for the SRV. Also FOY pewee and a Yellow-throated Vireo plus a Stream Cruiser.

Tuesday 5/16: Fairly busy at BBN, 13ish warblers including FOY Blackpoll and 4 Bay-breasted. Also several pewees, lots of thrushes (mostly Swainson’s), etc.