Monday, September 9, 2019

The last couple days plus an update on birds from Hurricane Dorian.

Common Yellowthroat, Silvio Conte NWR-Fort River, Hadley, MA, Sep 9, 2018
Lesser Yellowlegs, Silvio Conte NWR-Fort River, Hadley, MA, Sep 9, 2018
Greater Yellowlegs, Silvio Conte NWR-Fort River, Hadley, MA, Sep 9, 2018
Dawn, Arcadia, Northampton, MA, Sep 8, 2019
I made a few stops on my way to work yesterday and on my way home today.  Nothing too unusual and it was actually quiet this morning considering the time of year and the great migration conditions overnight.  The cool temperatures (upper 40's) and morning fog probably didn't help but I was surprised how quiet it was.  Nonetheless there were still some birds to be seen and any day out and about is a good one.

Now for another update on the birds carried into the area and points north from Hurricane Dorian. The following list is far from complete and I expect many more records to come to light over time as many areas in Canada hit hardest by the storm are still without power and communication. Within Massachusetts the most noteworthy sightings included a Brown Pelican in Salem and a Black bellied Whistling Duck on Nantucket. A few seawatches along the coast (mainly the cape) produced a number of shearwaters, some storm petrels and a number of gulls and terns.

Dorian made landfall in Nova Scotia as a hurricane and reports from the area so far indicate a large influx of a number of southern species including Black Skimmer (hundreds!), Laughing Gull (also hundreds), Glossy Ibis, “lots” of swallows of several species plus Purple Martin and Cave Swallow, Cattle Egret, American Avocet, Black necked Stilt, Marbled Godwit and Brown Pelican.  Many species of terns have been seen including Sooty, Bridled, Sandwich, Forster’s, Royal, Gull billed and Black Terns plus the more expected species. Unusual passerines were also noted including Cerulean Warbler, Kentucky Warbler, Worm eating Warbler, Prothonotary Warbler, Yellow throated Warbler and Summer Tanager.  I will update the list as more information comes to light.  Sadly many birds were killed by the storm outright and many others will perish after surviving the storm itself due to stress, starvation and predation.  Storm birds are always bitter sweet.

The tropics remain active with Tropical Storm Gabrielle way out in the central Atlantic (and not a threat to North America) and a few tropical waves coming off of Africa that may eventually turn into tropical systems but not within the short term.

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