Saturday, December 12, 2015

Trip along the valley and then to Quabbin

Red necked Grebe, UMASS pond, Amherst, MA, Dec 12, 2015
Red necked Grebe, UMASS pond, Amherst, MA, Dec 12, 2015
Black Ducks and Mallards, Hadley, MA, Dec 12, 2015
Horned Grebes, Quabbin Park, MA, Dec 12, 2015
I made numerous stops this morning trying my luck at catching up with waterfowl in the valley and ended the morning with eleven species.  I started off before sunrise quickly hitting the Honey Pot to check for owls (came up empty).  I then headed over to the UMASS campus pond to see if the Red necked Grebe found yesterday by Devin was still around.  A quick scan around in the first light of the day revealed the grebe in among 130+ Canada Geese and 40+ Mallards.  Very odd to have this species on such a small pond (a first record for the UMASS campus list apparently...bringing the list to 250).  I then spent the next few hours working my way south along the Connecticut River in Hadley and into South Hadley down to the Holyoke Dam.  I turned up more waterfowl species including Mute Swan, Black Duck (a group of 24 together), Green winged Teal, Common Goldeneye and Common Merganser.  I then headed back toward Quabbin and made stops at Lake Wallace, Winsor Dam, Quabbin Park and Beaver Lake which produced new species including Hooded Merganser, Common Loon and Horned Grebe.  Very odd to have no ice at all on any body of water during my travels today...certainly unusual in mid December.

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