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Everything posted by millipede

  1. sandpipers that is? In the field, I couldn't get a good enough look, the scope would have been handy. I figured most would be least given what's been reported around here lately. I felt like one bird looked a little different than the others but I am not sure I got a good picture of them all. Oh well. I'm leaning towards least for all the birds really but, Merlin didn't make that suggestion for the few I tried... ha \
  2. overall shape and color plus what looks like an eye ring all suggests field sparrow to me... Wouldn't hurt to wait for a second opinion though. 🙂
  3. NW Arkansas this month. I remember not being able to ID it in the field. And it disappeared quickly. I wish I had a better angle...
  4. Going through more pictures... cormorants are always interesting birds. I sometimes take second looks because sometimes(not usually this time of year) we can get a stray neotropic in the mix. This pic here, the bird that is closer looks to have a shorter neck and shorter bill. Is this an illusion, or posture and angle thing? Or, just a simple difference as birds aren't always exactly the same size and shape??? There is some white around the bill but I'm not sure it's distinctive enough to even really think neotropic... not to mention, I'm not sure the bill size/shape is that different. Anyway... thoughts?
  5. I was taking photos of cedar waxwings just outside the house... There were some other birds like titmice, a single junco, YRWA, robins, amgo... Anyway... I'm just(days and days later) looking at photos and I see this bird with the waxwings and... weird. It has its head down... looks like a long thin bill but, that may be the angle/position? Looks like some peachy color just under the top part of the wing??? you can see a little white at the corners of the tail... I'm thinking these may all be good ID marks but, some birds you just know and some, well, I'm not good with ALL the details. Like the underside/tip of the tail on a robin... I couldn't ID a robin with that. I'm hoping some of you can pick at these photos and tell me what I'm looking at. I am assuming, with what I can see, these photos are of the same bird. Is this just a robin? That's the only thing that makes sense with what I know I saw that day and, that LITTLE bit of color... is it a younger bird? Or just a poor angle? Why don't I have any pictures of this bird with its head up? Say cheese you silly bird. ha
  6. My mom was just asking me, on the phone, about how I might track birds(eBird) to find something... like how I might have gone looking for piping plovers several years ago to know when and where. She asked if there was anything like that in the winter... I had to have her clarify... basically, birds that are just there in the winter months that she might go look for. She'd like something near the ocean but, knowing her I would not recommend anything difficult to find. Ocean birds would be cool(in my opinion) but not necessarily easy for an inexperienced birder. If she's even a "birder." I'm going to look at eBird and am already thinking of sending her to plum island for a snowy owl... and maybe snow buntings? Is there anything else that might be passing through or hanging out AND be easy for a beginner to find/spot this time of year? She's in Middlesex county... I think anything from southern NH to say the gloucester area(if coastal) but not toooo far from where she is.
  7. Bay-breasted warbler? Was outside on the phone and saw an unknown bird... I had to go back in to get my camera and binoculars so I'm not even sure that what I got then was the same bird. In fact, the one I saw first seemed a lot plainer/grayer but, what I see with my eyes and the binoculars and camera can be three different things sometimes so who knows. I came inside after a while and used Merlin which suggested bay-breasted. I compared it and, it looks good to me. This will be a first for Arkansas bird for me... good yard bird. They do pass through these parts but go unnoticed, I assume, most of the time. Those fall warblers... ha. IF this is a bay-breasted, I'll be happy because, I've been really depressed and anxious, dealing with a lot, and just not getting out much. I've missed most of fall migration. People reporting some good things that I just haven't looked for. If it wasn't for my kids' schedule visiting their mother, I was tempted to try and chase the golden-crowned warbler in LA... would have been some other good lifers down there too. HA. Anyway... I have a few other pictures from different angles but, this one came out the clearest.
  8. I will, at some point, try to get some IDs from Milford... That place was awesome. I left my kids at the edge of the beach where they just buried each other and had fun... I think I bothered a photographer... he had a HUGE HUGE lens but was photographing sanderlings and such less than 20 feet away, maybe even 10 feet at times???... Part of me was wondering how a lens that big could even shoot something that close. But then, I don't know a lot about photography yet. I tried to disturb the guy as little as possible but was glad I did as he told me that further down is where a person might see some oystercatchers... There was only a single one down there but... it was awesome. I had seen a ruddy turnstone before but I don't believe I had in male breeding plumage... and there were at least 8 turnstones there, at least 6 male. You could get fairly close too... was an awesome sight. Had one VERY faint plover that the guy said was a young piping. Had another that looked semipalmated but a bit fainter. I'll have to look at the pictures. tons of sanderlings and then some sandpipers along with them that I'm just not great with... was scanning for a red knot... definitely not any breeding adults but I'll have to look over my pics to see if any of the birds I was uncertain of was anything interesting... Was a great trip... Sad it's over. 😞 Almost to Missouri yesterday and I joked with my son "should I pull over here and do some birding?" He joked back "yeah..." So I did. Just happened to be at horseshoe lake park, a place I had been and seen eurasian tree sparrows before... I searched and searched and had no luck with them 😞 But, at least a dozen common gallinules, MOST of them being young... was pretty cool. And an adult and a young mississippi kite perched in a tree almost right above me... closest I've been to one of those before. I added about 2.5 hours to my drive home by stopping there... which made me quite exhausted when we got in near 10PM last night. All in all, a good trip... American oystercatcher Least bittern (heard only) Canada Jay Boreal chickadee Spruce grouse Bay-breasted warbler 6 new birds? I definitely can't complain. 🙂 6 really cool birds.
  9. Looking at eBird I am seeing clapper rails in CT... which makes me want to chase those too but I think I might try to stick with the more obvious bird... the oystercatcher. And perhaps I will give milford another chance this year. Does anyone know Milford Point well? That whole area? Last time I just stopped at the audubon center and scanned from there and it got dark on us... I will try to get there much earlier this time. Can I park at the Audubon unit and then walk down to the beach with the kids? Is swimming allowed on that beach there? Rules? Where's a good spot there to look for oystercatchers? Any and all advice on that location would be appreciated. This wont take me down 90 through NY but will only add like 20 minutes to my total driving time so why not. 🙂 If I can leave here by noon at the latest tomorrow, I should be able to get to Milford by or before 3 which will still give me some daylight there. I'd try and find someone to meet me and show me around but the way our trips go, I can never promise when exactly I'll leave so I can't predict an arrival time as closely as I'd like. ha.
  10. I'm mad at myself for changing my friday beach plans... Ended up thinking I'd go this morning... I still could but, now I have family that's going to show up at my mom's house around noon as we're heading back to AR tomorrow. Ack... we have to clean and pack still. 😞 Anyone want to help me drive back to Arkansas??? I'm NOT looking forward to it. Would be the first time driving that far by myself in more than 20 years. Getting older makes such trips a little harder each time. Humbug. Wish I could go to the beach and do more birding... but you can only pack so much birding into a trip without driving your family crazy. Four new life birds on one trip isn't too bad though.
  11. Oh yeah, we heard the bitterns but did not see them... well, heard at least one. Which means I'll count it and my daughter probably wont. 😞 Wish I had more time... haven't been to plum island or anywhere but our camping trip really. But, visiting with family and swimming and stuff is all important too right. 🙂
  12. YAWN...... what is sleep? I went camping at Brighton State Park in Vermont and it was a good trip. I have a few kids that "hate" birding because they're not really that interested in the birds and hate walking and walking. I'm 44 and I tell them they're kids... I'm out of shape. They should be able to keep up... and, enjoy the other nature around. Eventually they got to feed a chipmunk right out of their hands... WHILE my oldest was doing that she suddenly said "don't move." THREE canada jays flew in to join the feast. They were a bit more nervous than the chipmunks and didn't eat from our hands but one did grab some seed off my hat which was fun. LIFER... Earlier on the trail we had even more excitement... My daughter heard something fly so she looked and 20 to 30 feet up a tree was a male spruce grouse. What an awesome sight. I have pictures but don't know when I'll get to posting them... I'm on vacation... 😛 So two new species just like that. They eventually(thanks to someone else mentioning it) got to hand feed some red-breasted nuthatches... That too was fun. None of the kids wanted to leave that spot. When we finally gave up, the birds followed us down the trail for a while. Later on peanut dam road... well by then my oldest was wiped out so she did not go down as far as I... and so, she missed out. I used some playback and got a couple of boreal chickadees down there. They didn't stick around long enough. Called the kids down the road and the birds were gone and they didn't care about the playback anymore... just silence. Was a cool road and I wish I could have walked further. Earlier on that road there was a couple birding there and we had all stopped to look at some warblers. We all watched this one bird and, we all left stumped... til later on when I was looking at eBird reports from THAT morning where someone reported two bay breasted warblers. Saw some yellowish... the other person there was noticing a more peachy color... two wing bars... it was all starting to make sense. My daughter was pretty excited since she watched it for a while and was making mental notes of the features... she was like "So I can count it... yes." This was our very first bay breasted warbler. I didn't get pictures of the warbler or those new chickadees but four new life birds in one day... it was great. The only disappointment was no moose, with all the signs around. I have seen moose when I was younger but my kids never have... a live(and not dead on road) porcupine would have been nice too. I said if I ever go up that far again I might end up searching for mammals instead. HA. Nothing else new and exciting... I am THINKING about getting on eBird to look for local reports of oystercatchers. I don't want to drive and drive and leave empty handed but I'd sure love to see one. i'm also debating on my trip back to Arkansas in just a few days. 😞 (If it wasn't for an ex that gets visitation of a few of the kids, I'd stay quite a bit longer...) I am wondering if that little egret is still in Delaware and how reliable it is...... I might have to take the longer way home just to see that. I wonder how many hours that would add to the drive. I wish I had more time and energy as I'd then see what else I could find on such a detour... perhaps in other states... more birds I've never seen. We'll see. To oystercatcher search today or not??? Have to give the whole family those take at home covid tests before my sister's wedding tomorrow. How fun. It's bad enough shoving one of those things up your own nose but doing that to kids? humbug.
  13. @Avery Is this the spot? https://goo.gl/maps/fsPk1HevFmV2MavU6 I want to save that in google maps so I can find it easily if I decide to go that way...
  14. Just took a quick peek at the eBird list there... and it reminded me... saltmarsh sparrow would be great too. We thought we heard one on Plum Island one year but we never could confirm it. I'm sure there are other potential lifers that I will walk right by while I'm up there. I want to sit and dig through all the lists and charts and see what else I can find but, my time here preparing is limited and my time there visiting is limited... ack... birds.......
  15. looking at the map, you mean 91. Our route was/is 93... going that way would add 15 minutes to an already 3 hour + drive... BUT... 15 minutes to maybe see least bitterns? We may just have to give that a try. 🙂 Depending on how I plan things, we'll see if that's easier/better to do on the drive up or the drive down. We'll see.
  16. Who do I tag to ask specifically about stuff in or near Middlesex county, MA? Outside of all the things I'm already looking for... my oldest daughter might want to try and drag her cousin along birding.... hoping to spark an interest. She said he needs to touch some moss. ha... I think my daughter and I both LOVE moss. One trip we were there we went to a place in Carlisle near an ice cream place, heavily wooded trails... HUGE boulders... I'll look it up... and that might be a good option for us. But... I am wondering, what other places in that general area might be good damp forests with mosses... I'll be staying near or in North Billerica a lot of the time... so, ah, Great Brook Farm, that was where we were... never submitted that checklist... 😞 anyway, I might want to plan a trip like that, not too far from where we'll be staying. I'll be camping way up in VT for a couple nights, a trip or two to the beach... a wedding... time will fly by and I need a lot of down time, swimming in my mother's neighbor's pool... ha. Other than great brook or something, what's something not too far that might be mossy, at least a little, and/or just be a must go to place in that area??? should I just do great brook again? or look for something better? A veery would be a good bird for my daughter by the way...
  17. and that reminds me... I'll be planning a trip to Wingaersheek beach in Gloucester with the kids so, that area might have a spot that would be good???
  18. I looked at the bar charts for that area for Aug-Sept for the last 14 years-ish... and nothing stood out... nothing with enough bars to consider something easy to look for anyway. I don't think I'm going to get to spend as much time digging deep into eBird and planning out more lifers... I'd love to look more into more ocean and shore birds I don't have yet... Saw a bird up there one year that had to be a shearwater or, something along those lines but, it sort of flew over the area and disappeared... Unfortunately my time is limited... Someone keeps trying to tell me I'm still young(almost 44... sure feels old sometimes) and when my kids are all grown, I can take my time looking for more. We'll see. No worries. And that makes sense about the weather. I sat outside for 20 minutes this morning and only recorded 4 species because the birds weren't that active, maybe quiet, and the cicadas are SO loud... time of year definitely changes things. I need to check the maps of that place again... It's difficult to go to Parker River and not end up there for a whole day searching... I forget which part is which, is the dike where there's a tower you can climb? If so, I've been to that part twice and haven't found LEBI yet... Plum Island is just a maybe right now... This all reminds me... I need to go looking at the maps for oystercatchers to see where a reliable spot is. Last year I found, on the maps, a good spot in CT but by the time we got there it was getting darker and we struck out. Was a cool place but, it's not likely on my route home this year.
  19. would you advice be more located to that county area? IF we stick with 90 through NY, I'll check the bar charts and such for that area... I'm not sure what I'd need through most of NY, or at least the 90 part... But... IF there was something luring enough... I'm giving myself some extra time traveling back and could stop for more than a few minutes... I'll let you know if I can think of something I "need" in that area. Last time we stopped at Montezuma NWR for a little while... didn't explore near as much as I would have liked as someone got cranky... but we got a ruddy turnstone there, I think... cursed memory... I don't know if I have some of those lists on eBird yet... I need them there though. Oh good, that one is on eBird and yep... ruddy turnstone... That made up for not getting to stay and explore as long as I wanted.
  20. I will have to write this down or print it... Good stuff... We got the woodpeckers last time... Well, I did. My daughter only heard them and wont count it. We'll definitely check all those places. For the grouse, is there a time of day that's best? We heard a grouse last time. I need to find my notes, based on call I think I put it down as ruffed. I don't remember(such a bad memory) but it wasn't that far from the trail and it was vocal for a bit. Would love to see and photograph. Trickiest thing is I'll have FIVE kids with me, from 20 years down to 7. Last time, when my ex was there, they got distracted by blueberries and we walked off alone, my oldest and I. This year, maybe I'll just have to give them candy to keep them quiet... HA. And least bitterns? That would be awesome... a lifer. I had an American bittern here in Arkansas once... Oh and we got the wwcr last time too... complete surprise and a lifer. black-throated blue warbler was another fun bird to see there. Anyway... thanks for those tips. Appreciate it a lot. I don't know how much birding I'll do on the way home... we'd be driving I 90 across the state of NY, somewhere around the 31st of August or the 1st of September. That is unless around that time there's still active reports of a little egret in Delaware and I haven't seen one yet... I'll change my route... we will see. Those are ones we hoped to find two years ago and struck out on. I could probably make a list to add a few. I wonder if I still have a list from 2 years ago... There are for sure other birds I'd love to see, those are just the ones I THINK I can find without searching half of my trip. I wish I had more time up there, I'd do a lot more birding. I don't want to ruin my kids' vacation or make family upset... some of them haven't seen me in 2 years.
  21. Two years ago i took the family to New England to visit, well other family... Some of the trip was fun and we got a couple new birds... My now ex wife really ruined that trip, complaining about every last thing I wanted to do, that she approved ahead of time... One of the upsides to being single... I can plan whatever I want now. (kind of lonely sometimes but, is nice not being nagged) ha... We're flying up and driving back... Moose Bog is on the menu again... last time, we explored the place two days in a row and found NO boreal chickadees and NO canada jays. We need to fix that. There's another bog, Mollie Beattie, not far from there so if we strike out at Moose Bog, we might head that way to see if we have any luck there. Was so quiet last time. Had a few real good birds but... I was told I'd be able to hold my hand out and have these birds come in to eat. Nothing. I brought seed. In fact, day 1, as we were leaving, I sprinkled some seed at the parking lot and on top of the sign hoping the next morning the birds would have found it. No luck. Oh well... HOPEFULLY I can get those two this year. I also hope to dig through the bar charts and maps and such and try to get an oystercatcher... There are quite a few birds I could go looking for, and wouldn't mind looking for... but, When you're there for almost 2 weeks and you have to visit family, camp, beach, swim, and attend a wedding... I can only pack so much birding in without driving my kids completely nuts. I'd LOVE to hunt down more and more life birds but... we'll just see what I can come up with. The trip back typically would go west through MA and then NY, or through PA... But there's been reports of a little egret in Deleware lately? I still haven't gotten the one in Maine... Haven't seen reports there of that one lately... I may chase, depending on when and where one is found. Would be great if it decided to hang around plum island for a few days. Anyway... I'll be arriving in MA late on the 18th and will be leaving around the 31st I think. We'll see. If anyone has any MUST HAVE birds in that area, know any PERFECT spots(will be in middlesex county most of the visit) or even wants to join us on a trip... let me know.
  22. I don't remember what map I was looking at that said it was a water treatment place... I know that's what was in my head, so where did I see it? I decided to make it a hotspot and I thought, I better name it accurately. So I went back to google maps and, I didn't see anything.. no name there. Odd. But, I clicked on a little square where a building was and "Grand River Pumping Station" came up... so, that's what I named it. I just checked the checklist again and they accepted it as a hotspot. https://ebird.org/checklist/S92290567 I'll be out that way again tomorrow morning so I will stop by and make another checklist. I'll double check to see if there's any signs up... And speaking of water treatment... I am sure there are others out there that aren't hotspots... The town I live in, they wont let anyone go birding there. They had a real lame excuse when I asked once, a couple years ago... that was if they let me in, then they'd have to let fishermen and other people in as well. Are there even fish at the wastewater plant? hmmm... Kind of a sad excuse... and disappointing. On the map, it's huge. It looks bigger than the local 60 acre lake I go to regularly... A LOT of water... When I asked, I said I imagine there's a lot of birds in the winter and they said yep... ugh... I wonder what amazing and maybe even rare birds have passed through there and nobody will ever know. 😞
  23. ha... I thought most people were relieved when I wasn't around... HA At the moment, it's on eBird as gull sp. I have no problem leaving it that way. I must say, something about it sure looks weird to me. There were more gulls but they were even further away. Probably should have pulled the scope out but it's only good at the 20x setting... and they were a ways off. I MIGHT swing by there again Saturday. Sunday I dropped a kid off at camp near there... Saturday I pick them up. It was at a water treatment place where you can drive out on a thin strip in a loop... pond like in the middle... HUGE lake around it. No eBird reports from there before that I could see. Never mind, there's about 5, all with weird names. I need to create a hotspot there. Sort of in the middle of nowhere but a cool spot. If I get out there again I'll try for better photos if there are gulls still present. In the meantime... here are all 4 photos I took put into one... Not sure it will change anything. You might be able to tell by the bird... it was HOT out. blech...
  24. NE Oklahoma yesterday. There were several gulls but they were all far away. This was the closest one I could get a pic of... not a great pic either.
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