Saturday, August 21, 2010

Gates 22, 16, 5 and Winsor Dam

Red tailed Hawk, Gate 16, August 21, 2010

Common Merganser, Gate 22, August 21, 2010

I made a series of stops this morning on the west side of Quabbin starting at daybreak at Gate 22 going to the water and then onto Gate 16 and finally to Gate 5. I finished the day with an early evening walk at Winsor Dam at Quabbin Park. There were many highlights for the both the morning and the evening. In the morning I came across several mixed species feeding flocks and ended up with twelve species of warblers among the other birds in the flocks. I had a pair of Cooper's Hawks fighting with crows at the end of Gate 22. I had fourteen Common Loons including a group of eleven close together, also at Gate 22. Other birds of note at Gate 22 included a mother and a couple of full size young Common Merganser just offshore. At Gate 16 the activity picked up as the morning chill was replaced with warmer temps. A wide variety of species in the mixed flocks moving through the woods. A Blue Jay giving a perfect Sharp shinned Hawk imitation had me fooled for a few minutes until I tracked down the jay. Gate 5 produced a variety of swallows moving along the water, another loon, a few Bald Eagles and another mixed species flock. A highlight here was watching a Garter Snake attempt to grab a small frog....despite a quick pursuit the snake was unable to catch the frog. Interesting to watch.

The evening walk began slowly but after 4:45 the Common Nighthawks started moving fast and furious and over the next 25 minutes at least 229 moved southeast, most quite low. A few even drank from the reservoir on the way through. I needed to get moving home for dinner so I left by 5:15. Home continued the nighthawks with an additional 37 moving by low over the trees.

Magnolia Warbler, Quabbin Gate 16, August 21, 2010

Yellow rumped Warbler juvenile, Quabbin Gate 16, August 21, 2010

Black and White Warbler, Quabbin Gate 22, August 21, 2010

Black throated Green Warbler, Quabbin Gate 16, August 21,2010


  1. Nice warbler pictures Larry. Very impressed with your nighthawk numbers. It almost seems as if there are a lot of early migrators this year as we have just started for the season and already getting some in (allthough nothing close to your numbers). I was at Quabbin 35 today and it was indeed cold and was very happy to see it warm up some.

  2. Love your warbler pics, Larry. I'll try for nighthawks tonight, if it doesn't rain.

  3. Thanks...its nice to see the variety of warblers around.