Friday, January 1, 2010

New Years Day Birding-The Start of a New Decade

I did some birding today with my birding pal Alan and we both had a list of target birds we wanted to get with mine being the local Red-tailed Hawks that live around the Cross Street area of my town. I never did manage to make it over there, but it's just as well as I saw one at the local cemetery in one of its favorite perching places which is the flag pole shown above.
It flew off and we saw another one while headed to the Millbury Bike Path and am not sure if its the same one or not as both look a little different to me, but not sure if its the lighting or not, but I do notice the hawk above has a lot of white around its face and less reddish undertones on the belly which may be due to how it is positioned as well as lighting, but I did take it as a good sign to get one of my first target birds in an hour of venturing out!
We went to the Millbury Bike Path where we saw a Belted Kingfisher, a Great Black-backed Gull and the usual Black Ducks (above), Mallards and Hooded Mergansers. We never did see the Northern Pintail which was a disappointment and am hoping its still in the area.
Next it was onto the Bird Store and More in Sturbridge for the White-winged Dove and the usuals were there as well including this very handsome Northern Cardinal above.
And quite a few sparrows including the usual White-throated Sparrows.
As well as an American Tree Sparrow who was having out with the many White-throats as well as some Dark-eyed Juncos.
And this very handsome Red-bellied Woodpecker as you can see. Such a gorgeous bird.
And the whole reason for the journey to Sturbridge of course which was the White-winged Dove. Could only get a record shot as there was a well known local photographer there who was in the zone getting pictures of it and we didn't want to be the ones to make it fly away of course!
After that we met up with the Forbush Bird Club where Joan led a trip within the greater Worcester area including Worcester Airport to look for Horned Larks and Snow Buntings and neither species was found, but this Red-tailed was there striking a pose for me as I took its picture from the car window.
After that is was onto Notre Dame Cemetery hoping for more waterbirds and there wasn't much there as a lot of the water is frozen but there were dozens of Canada Geese flying by and landing on whatever water was unfrozen.
We also had our first Eastern Bluebirds there which was a real treat.

And what would any new year be without a sighting of the Peregrine Falcons which are my favorite birds of all. Lousy shot of the two of them on the towers next to their nesting box. Can't wait to get back to work just to see them again. So happy they are safe and sound as I haven't seen them in over a week so was getting a little worried but as usual they managed just fine without me. :-p
Another treat were the large group of American Robins taking advantage of a crab apple tree. I also saw my first Northern Mockingbird there for the year.

And so begins the start to a new year and even more exciting a new decade. Now I have never been good with New Years Resolutions so I don't make them as I usually fail so don't set myself up for failure, but I am making a promise to myself to get out there a little more and see the world. This past decade was a decade of transition for me with too much to talk about in a blog post but let's just say I have done a lot of growing up over the past 10 years or so and know myself more now than I ever did. This decade will be spent doing things I have often thought of doing but never did as I tend to stay in my comfort zone. This will be the decade in which I break out of that somewhat with my goals of getting to Cape May this year and perhaps the Texas Birding Festival if I can manage my vacation time a little. Nothing better than a start of a new decade for new possibilities!

Take care all!


A Scattering said...

Today on my walk I had 3 glimpses of a Belted Kingfisher, saw 4 mallards 2M, 2F and one White-breasted Nuthatch. I also heard Chickadees and a Cardinal. Love your shot of the sparrow in flight.
Wishing you a great year of birding!

madcobug said...

You saw a lot of birds today and some great shots. Poor things are probably finding it hard to find food in all that snow. Helen

Mary said...

All great birds but the Robin and Bluebird get me every time.

Nice day, Kim!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Looks like a pretty good star to the birding year.I hope it only gets better from here on.

Rich said...

Looks like a good day!!

Chris Petrak said...

Nice collection of photos and variety of birds - good start to the year!

Kelly said...

...sounds like a great start to the New Year for you! I totally get the breaking out of your comfort zone thing. The birds are the only thing that can break me out. I did a bit of that this year...more to come for me also! Wishing you the best in this New Year--and happy birding! :-)

Kathiesbirds said...

Are you doing a Big January count this year? I hope you are because you are off to a good start already! Larry is doing it as well as a new guy named Robert from Idaho! Come by and let me know and I will add you to the list!

By the way, do you eBird?

Happy New Year!


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