Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Winsor Dam the last couple mornings and evenings....more Brant

Brant, Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 24, 2012

Common Loon, Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 23, 2012

Common Loons (two in distance w/ ring billed gull on left), Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 23, 2012

Bald Eagles, Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 23, 2012

Winsor Dam at dusk, Oct 23, 2012
Yet again this week I have tried to swing by Winsor Dam either on my way to/from work with some mixed results.  Tuesday morning found little activity but a stop on Tuesday evening I managed to come across a nice selection on the nearly calm surface of the reservoir with five Common Loons, half a dozen Horned Grebes in two separate groups plus a group of five Mallards. 
Brant, Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 24, 2012

Brant, Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 24, 2012

View at dusk at Winsor Dam, Oct 24, 2012

Common Loons (one on left was odd bird with strange coloration, best shot I could get of it ), Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 24, 2012

Brant, Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park, Oct 24, 2012

On Wednesday morning the reservoir was nearly flat calm again allowing birds to be picked out well out from the dam.  The waterfowl there included 31 Hooded Mergansers, 28 Mallards, 56 Canada Geese (both flybys and distantly on the water), a Black Duck and two Common Loons.  Another notable bird there in the morning was a displaying American Woodcock.  I really wish I had more time to explore around other parts of Quabbin Park as I'm sure I could have turned up some other great birds.  In the evening I stopped and the first birds I looked at were a group of nine Brant fairly close into the dam.  Ian Davies had a group flyover at UMASS this morning so there certainly was an influx of the species today.  I have had great luck with Brant this year but have oddly not come across a single Snow Goose yet!  There were other waterfowl scattered around including 5 Common Loons (one of which was a unique looking stayed tucked the entire time in the fading light and I only managed a marginal photo of it), 7 Common Mergansers, one Hooded Merganser, 8 Black Ducks, a dozen Mallards and 28 Canada Geese.  Also lots (80+) Dark eyed Junco's around the area.  All bird photos from the last few days taken through the scope.
The 'anti gull boat patrol' will be starting here soon so evening visits there will become unproductive.

Hurricane Sandy location and projected path as of evening of Oct 24, 2012

Potential tracks of Sandy as of Oct 24, 2012
 Also a bit more information regarding the tropics that I mentioned in an earlier post.  Hurricane Sandy is still in the southern Caribbean hitting Jamaica and then headed north over Cuba and through the Bahamas.  What happens to the storm after that remains to be seen.  The various forecast models differ on what impact the storm will have on the northeast.  The storm may head out to sea and result in less direct impact or it could be drawn in closer to the coast or perhaps even make landfall in the northeast as an extratropcial system.  If the forecast model that brings the storm into the northeast holds true the impact could be extensive.  Overall the trend over the last day has been to push the storm a bit closer to the coast and have more of an impact on the northeast.  There is much uncertainty at this time but the storm bears a close watch as it moves up the coast.

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