Sunday, April 20, 2014

Early Warblers & Piping Plovers

Lots of these guys around right now. Also a good amount of Pine Warblers and Yellow-rumped.

Palm Warbler 

                                                                         Pine Warbler

                                                         Pair on nest at Sandy Point

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Spring time

Lots of migrants arriving. The woods are full of Hermit Thrush, Golden Crowned Kinglets, Brown Creepers, and Flickers. From what I can tell there are still 6+ Snowy Owls around on the Island. One bird is definitively them same bird that has been on the causeway all winter. The others possible birds moving though on their way back to the arctic.

                                                                        H. Thrush

                                                                    Male Harrier
                                                           Beautiful Male Snowy

The meeting of spring and winter, Redwing Blackbird and Snowy Owl.

A Red Fox den at the Salisbury Reserve has received quite a bit of attention. I stopped by to see the Kits who were adorable. On my second visits to the den I found it mobbed by photographers. I went to the marsh side to view an owl I noticed, there I  found one of the fox adults trying to figure out how to reach the den through the crowd to bring in some prey. Personally I don't think I will go to the den again, clearly a lot of stress on the parents. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

American Kestrels

What a beautiful day today, spring was here. Incredible push of Kestrels on the Island, I had 26 birds without putting in a lot of effort. Also a good number of Yellow-rumped Warblers in Newbury. Other highlights were; 3 Osprey (FOY), 4 Snowy Owls, and a Short-eared Owl. I snapped a few pictures, but mainly I was just birding today.

                                                                 Yellow rump
                                                                        Short-eared at dusk
                                       Far off Short-eared Owl...crappy pic but always fun to see
                                                            First of the year Osprey

                                                       Northern Harrier at sunset
                           Some kind of spine cached about 6 feet up in a tree in Newbury. Bobcat maybe dragged it up there ?


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Belize - Key West - Dry Tortugas

Thanks to the Morris clan we started off the adventure in Key West, it was awesome. Lots of reveling.  Took an amazing day trip out to the Dry Tortugas. The Tortugas are about 60-70 miles off the Florida Keys. It is major nesting site for Sooty Terns, Brown Noddy, Magnificent Frigate Birds, and Bridled Tern. I spent the day exploring Fort Jefferson and watching / logging some life birds.

                                                                 Fort Jefferson
                                                                     Frigate Birds
                                                                   Nesting area
                                                                   Frigate Birds
                                                                      Brown Noddy
                                                                      Royal Tern

                                        Ruddy Turnstone, dominant shorebird on the island. Doubt I'll be getting this close on Plum.

               A number of Skimmer's were on the island as well. I am real big fan of Skimmers, I hardly get to see them. As such, I took a bunch of pictures.

There was also a Crocodile milling around the that was cool and unnerving. 

I learned also  in Key West every time you hear a sound in the bushes...a herd of Chickens charge out. Here 2 Roosters proceed to chase each other in circles while Tina and I watch in bewilderment. 

Next we  flew from Florida to Belize City, and from there took a puddle jumper to Plancencia. We stayed at the Green Parrot an awesome spot right on the beach recommended by Whitney and Brian. We got hooked up by Leo the manager, and went out with some great guides. The birding in Belize lived up to its infamy, birds everywhere from the second we touched down. 


We went with a guide up the Monkey River seeing TONS of birds, Howler Monkeys, and even a few Manatees .
                                                               Tropical Kingbird
                                                              Red-Lored Parrot
                                                       Common Tody Flycatcher  ...I think
                                                                 Social Flycatcher

                                                          Yellow Throated Euphonia
                                          Some kind of Creeper, Tawny-winged I think
                                                           Prothonotary Warbler
Keel-Billed Toucan, one of 10+ birds we saw the last day. Leo took us out to a Reserve on the last night so we could see these birds prior to leaving. Shot by Casey.
                                      Bare-Throated Tiger Heron. I was very excited to see these.

                                                              Little Blue Heron
                                Montezuma Oropendola nests, numerous birds flying about.

                                                         White-Collard Seedeater
Acorn Woodpecker. 
            I had to review the ol' book to figure out some of my new pals, of course with a cocktail.
                                      Sometimes in Belize you have a tree frog in your toilet.
Common Basilisk 
                                             Golden silk orb weaver...extremely large spider
Blue Gray Tanager 
                                                                    Brown Booby
Howler Monkey 

Here we have the Plum Island snorkel tag team at Laughing Bird Kaye National Park. It was an amazingly healthy reef, very well protected by a full time live in ranger, well done Belize. Incredible to explore, like swimming through a forest. At any rate, great trip we were sad to go back to the frozen north. 

Pretty strait forward on this one...