Thursday, August 14, 2014

Heavy rain and the day after

Winsor Dam at dawn, Aug 14, 2014
Solitary Sandpiper, Honey Pot, Hadley, MA, Aug 14, 2014
I headed out early once again before work in the hopes of finding something unusual after all the rain of yesterday.  I made a brief stop by Winsor Dam but had nothing of note but did spend some time scanning through several gulls but only found Ring billed Gulls.  I then headed over to Huntington Road but the area was flooded out with no mudflats, so no shorebirds…after a few days the spot could be productive once the water level drops a bit.  My final stop was over to the Honey Pot where I scanned a few fields from the dike and picked up a Solitary Sandpiper, five Least Sandpipers and a couple Killdeer.  Most every field has some muddy areas that look great for shorebirds.  I only wish I had a little more time to spend checking more fields.  Also had a few hundred swallows swarming over the river in the distance, with most being Tree Swallows.

Least Sandpipers, Hadley, MA, Aug 13, 2014
Winsor Dam, Aug 13, 2014
Winsor Dam, Aug 13, 2014
Wednesday certainly did turn out to be quite rainy with several inches of rain falling during the day resulting in some flooding but sadly no unusual birds that I could find.  I stopped at Winsor Dam before and after work but didn't turn up anything decent but the rain and fog made viewing tough.   also made a brief stop in the pouring rain to see if I could relocate the Little Blue Heron but no luck and with all the rain all the mudflats along the river have disappeared...for now.  I did manage to turn up a couple Spotted Sandpipers and five Least Sandpipers so the stop was not totally a bust.

Although we had heavy rain and some minor flooding we dodged a bit of a rain bullet that hit squarely on Long Island to our south were some amazing and historic rainfall totals occurred. Islip, NY got a total of 13.27" of rain in just 24 hours with an amazing 5.34" of rain between 5 - 6 am and then another 4.37" between 6 - 7 am. The record rainfall total for the entire month of August in Islip is 13.78" and in an entire summer (June-August) Islip gets on average 11.75 inches of rain so the rain there today was truly impressive and even more surprising when it was not associated with a tropical storm or hurricane.

(Thanks to Jeff Masters weather blog:
and the NWS for info on the rain in Islip).

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