WIR 1/4-1/10

Wednesday 1/4: Doctor’s appointment, so went to Fresh Pond on the way. Got the Horned Grebe, Redhead, and 2 loons but not too much else. Stopped for an oil change on the way home and had the usual stuff at Hardy.

Thursday 1/5: Too nasty for anything land bird related, so went to Great Meadows. Very little on the water but Alan told me about a Great Horned, so I made the long loop. No owl but 2 Fox Sparrows, a bunch of RB Nuthatches, and what looked like a white-winged gull that got lost in the clouds.

Friday 1/6: Absolutely nothing along the riverwalk.

Saturday 1/7: Did an on foot day. Sharpie at Falzone, ravens everywhere, RC Kinglet at the West Meadow about it.

Sunday 1/8: Debated a few options and went with chasing a few things in Worcester county. Started at Westboro WMA where I didn’t find any Redheads but did get what appears to be a first January Worcester record for Brown Thrasher plus a few other things. Continued with a quick stop at Wachusett Res (350 geese), Coachlace (nothing), then Dexter Drumlin. Apparently all the geese had flown off shortly before, but did have a grackle or two. Couldn’t find the meadowlarks either. Bolton Flats next, which was very quiet. Nothing at School St (medflight across the road probably didn’t help) or Nine Acre.

Monday 1/9: Dunback started with crows harassing a Barred Owl. Circled around and a towhee popped up near the intersection. Then another, which had a pretty patterned back but I haven’t been able to turn it into anything else. Eventually gave up on it and took a quick trip through the woods where I had one of the Yellow-rumps and a Winter Wren plus a Rusty Blackbird and a bunch of Purple Finches on the way over.

Tuesday 1/10: Three Hermit Thrushes, 2 ravens, and that was about it at Hanscom.

WIR 12/28-1/3

Wednesday 12/28: Cookson and Watertown Square were pretty quiet. Got the sapsucker(s) I was looking for at Mt. Auburn along with RB Nuthatch, up to 94 for the county this month. Continued to Jamaica Pond hoping the Canvasback had resurfaced. It hadn’t but a 4th Redhead had joined the 3 from yesterday. Moved on to Leverett Pond where the Lesser Scaup had presumably moved then on to Chestnut Hill Res which was mostly frozen and didn’t have much.

Thursday 12/29: Hop Brook and Assabet were pretty quiet beyond a flyover crossbill. Got the Horned Larks at School St but not much else.

Friday 12/30: Common Mergansers and a Red-shoulder were noteworthy at Hanscom. Meriam’s and Kaveski were quiet. Thought about Great Meadows but decided it would be crowded and saw little at Waltham St. instead.

Saturday 12/31: Ell Pond did not have the Merlin while I was there (White-throated Sparrow was #50 in Melrose at least). No Canvasback at Sylvester Baxter (which meant missing the Merlin wasn’t a big deal and I wouldn’t have to run around looking for one more to hit 100 in county for the month) but there were 4 scaup around the dam. Not much at Spy Pond and the res was fogged in later.

Sunday 1/1: Cardinal then Song Sparrow at the feeder to start the year. Concord CBC was today, usual loop in Lincoln. Pileated was pretty close to first bird out of the car, then at least 3 Savannahs and a siskin at Ricci, a Sharpie along Hanscom Drive, and at least a couple Red Crossbills at Tanner’s Brook made it an ok day. Gave Nine Acre and the res a quick drive by on the way home, nothing worth noting.

Monday 1/2: Quick check of Pelham Island Rd had nothing and not much at the Old 27 Bridge. Water Row had a Pileated, Red-shoulder, Winter Wren, and a couple interesting calls. Non-birding loop of Gloucester had a few of the usual sea things.

Tuesday 1/3: Grackles and GW Teal plus the regular ducks at Arlington Res.

WIR 12/21-12/27

Wednesday 12/21: Got the Great Cormorant and RT Loon on the Mystic Lakes plus a decent number of the usual stuff. Had time to pull in at Spy Pond and added DC Cormorants and a PB Grebe.

Thursday 12/22: Nothing unusual at Ricci Farm or Nine Acre.

Friday 12/23: Quick afternoon run around the res had a few goldeneye and lots of mergansers plus an eagle or two.

Saturday 12/24: Too cold, not much at Nine Acre, nothing at School St, nothing much at the res.

Sunday 12/25: Did an Earhart run. Surf Scoter was visible from Draw Seven and the towhee was cooperative too. Usual at the other side. Made a quick stop to look for the chat on the way out and turned up a Yellowthroat instead!

Monday 12/26: Did a short Cape Ann trip. Halibut was on the quiet side but did have the usual ducks, a few Razorbills, a Bonaparte’s Gull, etc. The fulmar at Jodrey was pretty cooperative. Eastern Point was quiet and 2 seconds of scanning didn’t turn up the Eared Grebe on the way out.

Tuesday 12/27: Started at Horn Pond. No Barnacle Goose, but the Redhead was back and joined by a second. Winter Wren was the only other thing of any interest from a loop. Quick check of sightings showed that the redpolls were at Lions Park, which I had skipped earlier, so walked over there and enjoyed 4. Silver Lake was next. Made a tiny detour on the way to check some small looking crows at one of the shopping centers and they did prove to be calling Fish. Turned out that wasn’t a worthwhile detour as an even bigger flock flew over the lake. Moderate number of gulls around, maybe a couple hundred and nothing stuck out enough to even get out and scope before they left.

WIR 12/14-12/20

Wednesday 12/14: Nothing much at Cookson or Gore.

Thursday 12/15: Towhee and catbird still at Dunback plus a siskin.

Friday 12/16: Loon at the res, ton of mergs at Flint’s, ton of geese at Nine Acre.

Saturday 12/17: Bit of CBC scouting, not much at the field station or along the river. Did a Meriam’s/Kaveski loop after hoping for a lapwing but not much beyond an eagle.

Sunday 12/18: CBC was quiet. Winter Wren, 4 Bluebirds, 2 grackles at BBN, then not much.

Monday 12/19: Most of the same ducks at Arlington Res, nothing much for land birds.

Tuesday 12/20: Very little at Falzone and the West Meadow but a catbird popped up by the parking lot on the way back.

WIR 12/7-12/13

Wednesday 12/7: Little too rainy at Great Meadows and got there too late for the geese, did have a Marsh Wren at least. Not much on the res. Sharpie on the deck midday.

Thursday 12/8: Siskin, couple Purple Finches about it at Rock Meadow, Red-tail with most of a squirrel at the ponds.

Friday 12/9: Nothing exciting at Ricci. Since that didn’t take long, ran to Great Meadows where the swan was back (190 for the ‘commute’, new record!) plus a Killdeer (new for first half of December finally).

Saturday 12/10: Started at Castle Island, which may not have been the best choice in the overcast and windy conditions. No shorebirds, not too many ducks, but a Harbor Seal (in the bay) or 3. Up to Draw Seven next, got the towhee but that was about it. Station Landing had 2 Hairy Woodpeckers (patch bird!). Tried Rivergreen Park next, no luck with the Wilson’s Warbler but a kestrel posed nicely. Lower end of the Mystic Lakes was quiet, nothing at Spy Pond but an eagle flew over as I was heading home.

Sunday 12/11: Plan was to work my way down from Heard Pond. Pond was quiet, probably too raw at Heard Farm but a Fox Sparrow and blackbird flock was ok. Ton of ducks at the bridge so I stopped and dug out 4 shovelers there plus 3 Gadwall from the driveway. Phone was dinging away about the Barnacle Goose in Woburn and given the weather that made more sense, so buzzed up. Debated a drive-by but gave it a few minutes. Stopped at Horn Pond, 2 more shovelers among the stuff on the main pond. Same ducks still at Arlington Res, nothing at Hardy.

Monday 12/12: Didn’t feel like going out in the snow, so walked to Hardy Pond and Graverson. Kingfisher, few mergansers and Bufflehead, and that was about it.

Tuesday 12/13: Rusty, siskin, 4 bluebirds at BBN.

WIR 11/30-12/6

Wednesday 11/30: Sharpie and that was about it at Fresh Pond.

Thursday 12/1: 7 GW Teal, 3 Fox Sparrows, and a woodcock at BBN. Usual at Hardy.

Friday 12/2: Pileated, Hermit Thrush, not too much else at Meriam’s. Cambridge Turnpike marshes were quiet. Flint’s looked to be mostly mergansers but didn’t scope.

Saturday 12/3: Wanted to be home early, so just a quick run. Started with a scan of the goose-less prison and School St fields then stopped at Warner’s Pond. Seven Gadwall still around along with 4 Savannahs and a Yellow-rump. Nine Acre had lots of Canadas but couldn’t pick anything else out.

Sunday 12/4: Went down to the Charles River Peninsula for the warbler show. First pass had none, second had the Blackpoll and Tennessee. Walked the full loop after and didn’t see much, came back to find Simon and Erik in the parking lot and that the Nashville had joined the crowd. Hung around for a bit, then we did the loop again, adding a catbird this time.

While considering the next stop, I got a text about the Tundra Swan at Great Meadows so that made the decision easy for Simon and I. Got there in time to see it swim by at close range then fly right over our heads. Enjoyed the social hour for a bit before I had to run.

Monday 12/5: Fairly quiet at Forest Grove.

Tuesday 12/6: No luck with any warblers at Drumlin Farm, probable Dickcissel calling didn’t cooperate either.

WIR 11/23-11/29

Wednesday 11/23: Mostly the usual at Weston Station Pond, but a Ruddy and Lesser Scaup were in with the Ring-necks, finally got a Tree Sparrow, and a pipit flew over the solar field (that’s 3 town birds!).

Thursday 11/24: Gave Waltham St and Dunback a quick run before Thanksgiving festivities. Usual stuff at Waltham St. Got back to Dunback and scanned through a big junco flock to find a Dickcissel among them. Also a towhee (not the one that’s been around?) and a catbird or two plus lots of Purple Finches and a Field Sparrow. No birding in Otis but did get Common Merganser and Barred Owl in Hampden coming/going.

Friday 11/25: Nothing different at the res. Hanscom was fairly quiet, did get a Fox Sparrow there finally. Usual ducks, a couple eagles, and a Pileated at Great Meadows.

Saturday 11/26: Heard Pond was quiet. Gadwall among the regulars at the swamp on Pelham Island Rd. Walked the length of Water Row, Pileated was about the only thing of interest. Gave the Old 27 Bridge an hour but very little was flying around. Starlings were it at Nine Acre, no birds at School St although the lark flock flew over as I was pulling onto Rt. 2. Horned Grebe continued at Flint’s, nothing new at the res or Hardy.

Sunday 11/27: Got the Red-throated Loon at Horn Pond but missed Bonaparte’s Gull, Evening Grosbeak, pintail, etc. Did have a nice Merlin, a Yellow-rump, Lesser Scaup, and a few other things. Quick pond loop had nothing. Check for Sam’s Blackburnian in Acton without luck, but an otter was quite nice. Afternoon check of the res had the same.

Monday 11/28: Cookson was quiet beyond a possible Yellow-rump being drowned out by geese. River was quiet too except for a Horned Lark flying over the pool (Charles #177!).

Tuesday 11/29: Not much change at Arlington Res, Redhead, Orange-crowned, etc still around plus a Yellow-rump.

WIR 11/16-11/22

Wednesday 11/16: Pond loop in the rain. Same in lesser numbers at the res. Geese, starlings, and a dove were all at Nine Acre. Same ducks at Flint’s but a big flock of gulls was dropping in. Unfortunately it was quite foggy and they were at the limit of what I could make out with the scope. Snapped a few photos and got ready to leave, but gave them a quick check first and an Iceland Gull was reasonably obvious, so I got back out and got the scope on it. Couldn’t pick anything else out though.

Thursday 11/17: Couple cormorants along Old County Rd. Chipping Sparrow and bluebirds at BBN.

Friday 11/18: Catbird, towhee, 2 Fox Sparrows at Dunback.

Saturday 11/19: Deer Island had the usual ducks, a few siskins, rb nuthatches, etc. Hairy was probably the biggest surprise. The Bonaparte’s at Earhart was fairly cooperative but not much else.

Sunday 11/20: Cold Spring Park had tons of robins, a bluebird, GH Owl, and not too much else. Usual ducks at Chestnut Hill. No luck with sapsucker at Hall’s Pond in the wind and no close space for a quick run around Fenway.

Monday 11/21: Falzone had a ton of waxwings and robins plus a Chipping Sparrow. Fox Sparrow and lots of geese over the West Meadow.

Tuesday 11/22: Fairly quiet at Habitat, lot of juncos and robins in the meadows but nothing much in the woods. Crossbill flew over the road as I walked to Weeks though, which ties my ‘commute’ year record. Nice sapsucker at the pond too.

WIR 11/9-11/15

Wednesday 11/9: Started at McClennen, got over to the pond and a Lark Sparrow popped up! Unfortunately lots of dog walkers, so it probably didn’t hang around much. Wouldn’t be shocked if it was the LCF bird. Also a siskin going over and a few Hoodies.

Continued to Arlington Res where I had just enough time to race around. Redhead is #186 on the ‘commute’ year list, super long shot but 200 isn’t impossible. Also a coot and a few Bufflehead.

Thursday 11/10: Took a chance that the Cave Swallow would be back at Great Meadows (or replaced by another). No luck and not much different than Tuesday, few less ducks, few more coots, walked the loop so more passerines.

Friday 11/11: Very quiet at Cookson and east of the square. Mt. Auburn had a snacking Merlin but not much else. Stopped at BBN on the way home and found the Ring-neck was still there.

Saturday 11/12: Started with a pond loop while waiting for the rain to leave. Common Mergansers and goldeneye were in but otherwise pretty quiet. Lots of Canadas but no interesting geese at Nine Acre. Once it cleared, I headed to Kaveski where I did not have the Bullock’s Oriole or too much else (5 meadowhawks and 3 Orange Sulphurs though). Figured Tanner’s Brook was worth a try but not much there either.

Sunday 11/13: Started at the res, 75 Ring-necks, otherwise the same. Also a bunch of Wood Ducks down Old County. Rain had picked up by the time I reached Draw Seven but I walked around. Nothing of note there, so over to Earhart. Weather got a bit better for a short while, catbird in front of Encore was about it though. Rain picked back up, but I checked the Mystic Lakes and Hardy Pond (nothing at all) on the way home.

Monday 11/14: Figured the winds made Cave Swallow a possibility so picked Great Meadows over Kaveski. No swallow and other things were just starting to pick up, would have loved a few more hours out there. Good movement of Herring Gulls and 4-5 Turkey Vultures plus most of the stuff that’s been there (no coot or pintail for me today).

Tuesday 11/15: Gave Kaveski another shot at the oriole. No luck obviously but 4 Fox Sparrows and a Fish Crow. Quick stop at Flint’s had a flyover siskin and a few more ducks.

WIR 11/2-11/8

Wednesday 11/2: BBN had a Lincoln’s and Field Sparrow plus a calling rail (November county #3). A meadowhawk by the basketball court was nice too.

Thursday 11/3: Sun and traffic made me second guess Fresh Pond, so I took the convenient turn and went to Lone Tree Hill. Lots of cormorants, 3 loons, a flock of siskins, and little else. Decided to cut and run across the street and had more of not much at Rock Meadow beyond a pair of bluebirds.

Friday 11/4: Lexington Community Farm, had the Orange-crowned but no Lark Sparrow or (likely BH) grosbeak and was too rushed to scan the water at the res. Sharpie was a ‘commute’ year bird somehow.

Saturday 11/5: Started at Danehy. Siskin high overhead was just about the first bird out of the car, Barred Owl later was nice but otherwise fairly quiet. Fresh Pond was very quiet. Shorebirds continued at Arlington Res, nothing in the fields, Redhead showed well. Afternoon check of Cambridge Res had a Peregrine on the rocks, which had me baffled until I got the scope on it.

Sunday 11/6: Coastal run, started at the greenway/cemetery which was pretty quiet (did add GC Kinglet and Yellow-rump to the Belle Isle patch list, so very exciting). Winthrop Beach had a close RT Loon and the usual stuff on the rocks. Lewis Lake wasn’t exciting. Belle Isle proper had 2 different eagles fly over but not much else. Lawn Ave had FOF Tree Sparrow. Quick check of Norumbega on the way home had a bunch of GW Teal and 2 coot.

Monday 11/7: Was stepping out the door to go to Dunback but it was raining way too hard (where’d that come from?) so checked the res (1 scaup among the Hoodies) and Flint’s (zero). Sun was out by then, so I went to Lindentree as it was nearby. Two (or twenty) Horned Larks, lots of bluebirds, a Sharpie, etc.

Tuesday 11/8: Went to Great Meadows hoping for some movement on the NW winds. Winds felt more west than northwest but there were lots of ducks around, highlighted by a pintail and 3+ wigeon. Also a coot, harrier, TV, and lots of blackbirds.