Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Falcons and Shorebirds and Nighthawks Oh My!

Today was a day for falcons which started off in the early afternoon with me paying my regular visit to Mr Peregrine over at the Commerce Building ledge.
I wasn't sure if he would remember me after my week long absence so tread lightly over to our favorite hang out place as he gave me the familiar eye I should be used to which is "oh no, not you again". Satisfied I was not forgotten I decided to watch him for a while and get some pictures. Check out those talons, I could look at those all day I am telling you!

And of course the eyes! There is something about the eyes of a falcon that makes me unable to turn away. Such thought and calculation in those eyes. Love the shot above as it really shows the detail of all of that gorgeous plumage he has.

I went to St Philips today after work after getting an email from Alan this afternoon giving me a summary of his bird finds of the day. You know sometimes it’s hard to have a birding buddy who is retired and can bird during the week while you are stuck in your office watching the clock tick to day end. I got one of those emails today and paused for a moment before opening wondering what fortune he had while I was droning over spreadsheets.

I finally get up enough will to open the email and there it is in front of my own jealous eyes, a Merlin!!!! And pictures no less as he has taken an interest in digiscoping. SOB, I wail while stuck in my office realizing the only interesting thing I have seen today (besides MrPeregrine) was a Rock Pigeon defecatng on a ledge over at White Hen Pantry! I was hoping the Merln would still be there after work and sure enough it was as you can see in the pictures below!

Alan went there as well with his scope which allowed me to get better pictures!

Love the detail on its tail and never really noticed it before.

The Merlin took turns perching on a dead snag that is a frequent spot for the Pileated Woodpeckers and then flying over to the snag that houses the herons nest. Surprisingly enough, there were not as many birds seen at St Philips today as there usually is. ;o)

This was a definite highlight of my week as I had not seen one of these fantastic birds since Tom's Quabbin Forbush Trip this past May so it was a real treat and am happy Alan decided to make a stop there this afternoon!
Next it was onto Brierly Pond to go check out the Spotted, Solitary and Least Sandpipers Alan saw there this morning.
One of the first things I saw was this Canada Goose x Graylag Goose that I blogged about earlier this summer.
As you can see, it is starting to show more characteristics of the Graylag now that it's gotten older. Particularly in its bill and legs.

There were a lot more species of shorebirds than what I saw the night before including some Solitary and Spotted Sandpipers.

It was funny watching this Solitary Sandpiper trying to maneuver its way through the mud as its feet kept getting stuck in the sludge.

The last part of the day was heading back to the mall in Millbury for Nighthawk watching.

At one point there were four of us which were Alan, Fran, a friend of Alan's and myself and our count for the night was a pathetic 17! The most interesting thing we saw was a gull flying around and hawking for insects with a nighthawk. Besides the low number we still had a really good time.
Since I had so much free time waiting for nighthawks, decided to take some pictures of wildflowers I saw while there including this Bird's Foot Trefoil.
Don't know what this is, but I thought it would make an interesting photo.

And lastly, Clover. Take care everyone!


Chris said...

Hi Kim,
I definitively love your falcon shots, they are so hard to get!! They are beautiful, especially the peregrine, but the merlin is also very nice, as he decided to behave a bit ;-) Really well done!

Deborah Godin said...

Fascinating shot of the goose. I never heard of such a cross, neat to know about this!!


Related Posts with Thumbnails