Monday, February 6, 2012

Hadley area

Rough-legged Hawk, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Feb 6, 2012

Rough-legged Hawk, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Feb 6, 2012

American Tree Sparrows, Honeypot, Hadley, MA, Feb 6, 2012
White-throated Sparrow, Hampshire College, Feb 6, 2012

I returned to Hadley this morning to try and get some photos of the Rough-legged hawk that has been hanging out in the Honeypot section as well as try to catch up with the White crowned Sparrow we missed yesterday.  When I arrived the Rough legged was perched atop the dike but before I could get very close to it a series of joggers and dog walkers flushed the bird and it finally came to roost atop a telephone pole for a short time and then disappeared from view.  I then made the walk into the area where the various sparrows have been.  I walked the edge near the river but had no sparrows at all.  I then decided to try some weedy areas in the fields and eventually came across a small (20x40' or so) berry patch and this contained an amazing 111 American Tree Sparrows and the Clay-colored Sparrow.  The Clay-colored was seen briefly and did not allow for any photos.  I struck out on the White-crowned again here.  I made my way back to the dike but the Rough-legged Hawk was still not around.  I then made a quick drive down Aqua Vitae Road trying to find him but had no luck.  I then headed over to Hampshire College to try and catch up with the Dickcissel and get some better photos but I struck out on this bird too.  There were a variety of birds around the college but nothing out of the ordinary.  I then decided to try my luck one more time with the Rough-legged and it paid off.  The bird was back on the dike and very cooperative.  It is amazing how non concerned of people the bird is.  I guess spending most of your life in the arctic doesn't allow you to gain a healthy fear of humans.  I got some nice shots of the bird and was rewarded at the end of my stop with a flyover Horned Lark.  I returned home, picked up Wilson and we went to Covey WMA where we had at least two Turkey Vultures moving north on the warm and breezy day.  Yet another warm day in February with the temperature approaching 50 degrees!

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