Sunday, July 26, 2015

The last full weekend of July

Green Heron in the fog, Old Deerfield, MA, July 25, 2015
Great Blue Heron, Great Pond, Hatfield, MA, July 25, 2015
Winsor Dam before dawn, Quabbin Park, MA, July 25, 2015
As is typical for the end of July the amount of bird song has dropped off substantially and the chances of finding something unusual around here is fairly low.  Nonetheless I still made it out a little this weekend (as well as on Friday).  On Saturday I decided to try my luck in finding unusual egrets/herons in a variety of spots as I travelled from Quabbin to Nothampton and then heading up the west side of the Connecticut River ending up in Deerfield (where a small pond has a history of attracting Black crowned Night Herons...none on Saturday) before heading back across the river and coming back south.  Despite much effort I managed to just find just a number of Great Blue Herons and Green Herons but nothing more unusual.  Before heading out on my quest for herons I made a predawn stop at Winsor Dam where I found at least one Eastern Whip Poor Will still calling.  Other highlights of the morning included a couple Black Vultures in among the Turkey Vultures at a roost in Hadley.

Sunday morning started out with occasional rain showers that I managed to mostly dodge as I checked a few spots in town including Lake Wallace, Covey WMA and Winsor Dam.  The best bird of the morning was a Merlin that came in low over the water heading north to south at Winsor Dam at first light.  Other highlights included a decent number of waterfowl at Lake Wallace ( 
Virginia Rail, Covey WMA, Belchertown, MA, July 24, 2015
Virginia Rail juveniles, Covey WMA, Belchertown, MA, July 24, 2015
River Otter eating frog, Lake Wallace, Belchertown, MA, July 24, 2015
Friday was a beautiful day and I made several stops including Lake Wallace and Covey WMA.  Some good stuff including at least six Virginia Rails at Covey WMA including at least three dark juveniles with an adult plus a River Otter munching down on a frog at Lake Wallace  (video link here: )....full lists with photos below:

Lake Wallace:
Covey WMA:

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