Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Early morning in the east meadows

Semipalmated Plover (with Killdeer), East Meadows, Northampton, MA, Sep 3, 2013
Semipalmated Plover, East Meadows, Northampton, MA, Sep 3, 2013
With additional rain showers and storms overnight I headed out early to check areas around the Connecticut River.  An area in Hadley that has been quite productive for shorebirds only had a single Solitary Sandpiper and a few Least Sandpipers today but with most of the mudflats covered by the rising river the numbers were not too surprising.  I then met up with Ian, Keenan and Ben over in the East Meadows where we had some interesting birds for the hour plus we were there.  Although we didn’t cover too much area due to muddy conditions we still had some really good stuff.  We had the following shorebirds around this morning: three Semipalmated Plovers (one with Killdeer and two others together in a separate field), at least eight Least Sandpipers, 26 Killdeer and a golden plover that was heard and seen flying south.  The vocalization was a bit odd and it may have been something more unusual than an American Golden Plover but we were never able to find the bird again despite searching several fields for it.  We also heard and then saw a Dickcissel down near the red barn (I believe Ian got some flight shots of the bird), a Vesper Sparrow, a Northern Harrier (there were actually at least four present but I only saw the one), lots of flyover Bobolinks and swallows (mainly Tree Swallows but a few Barn and Bank Swallows also and hundreds more too far out to ID).

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