Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend in Massachusetts

                                                              (again, not my photo)

For memorial day weekend I went up to our beach house on the south shore of Massachusetts. I started the weekend by going to Wompatuck State Park on Saturday. There had been Acadian Flycatcher, Cerulean Warbler, and Worm-Eating Warbler reported from there. I missed on all three. Acadian Flycatcher I might have heard, but I am not sure. Cerulean and Worm-eating were total failures. Oh well. I did see 4 flycatchers (but not the one that mattered)- Pewee, Phoebe, Kingbird, Great-Crested. On the way out, we paused by a house with a hummingbird feeder, just in time to see 3-5 hummingbirds flying around and feeding. One male was even doing his u-dive display flight. 

Later that day, on the beach, I saw least and common terns, greater yellowlegs, willet, BB Plover, Killdeer, and Semi Sandpiper. One house along the beach is abandoned, and there is a huge swallow colony there. Mostly barn, but I did see one small brown swallow that I think was a bank swallow but I didn't get a long enough look to be sure. 

On Sunday, I took a brief trip to the local Audubon, Daniel Webster Nature Sanctuary. It contains on of the largest colonies of Purple Martins in the state. The highlights of the trip were hundreds of martins, a little blue heron, yellow warblers and yellowthroat, GC Flycatcher, Green Heron, Little Blue Heron, oriole, and my personal favorite, dozens of Bobolinks. They were obviously in the peak of the mating season, as all the males were noisily singing and chasing each other. Many flew right past us, and one perched ~15 away singing. Very cool and beautiful birds. They and the martins are the specialty of that sanctuary, and are very likely to see every time you go there. 

Good Birding,


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