Saturday, February 25, 2012


Its been a few weeks since the last entry, so I've finally had a moment to do a little updating. A few weeks ago I found out at midnight that a Lazuli Bunting was discovered earlier in the day at the Audubon Sanctuary in Wellfleet. (Mass) The Lazuli Bunting is a very rare bird in the state with only two prior sightings- the first from Nantucket and the second from Hadley. The Hadley bird was just a one day wonder and the Nantucket bird was a little harder to get too. So, I got up at 7:00am and headed for the Cape and would eventually meet up with Priscilla Moor along Rte 6. 

Priscilla and I made it to Wellfleet by 11:15am, walked in to the visitors center and watched the Bunting for the next thirty minutes. From there we decided to head a little farther east to Wellfleet Harbor just to see what might be around. The highlight was a nice male Barrow's Goldeneye hanging out with a small flock of Common Goldeneye's. Also in the Harbor were Greater Scaup's, Common Eider, Buffleheads, and a Dolphin?

The Dolphin sighting would be a low point of the morning....Recently there has been a rash of beached Dolphins on the bay side around the Wellfleet area. The sighting inside the harbor could only spell doom for this beautiful animal. In fact we found a dead dolphin across the channel being fed upon by Great black-backed gulls.

closer to home...last weekend I was lucky enough to be included in a small group to view a roosting Long-eared Owl! These owls are a rarity in Massachusetts, but because they're so hard to locate, it wouldn't surprise me at all,  if in fact their status might be uncommon? 

The other huge highlight last weekend (Feb 18) was the discovery of a Dark-morph Red-tailed Hawk by Jacob Drucker around Hampshire College in Amherst. This beautiful raptor is from the western United States and is almost unheard of in Massachusetts. This bird was seen twice during a three day period, the last observation was on the 18th.


Lazuli Bunting- Wellfleet Bay Sanctuary.

Barrow's Goldeneye- Wellfleet Harbor
Dead Dolphin- Wellfleet Harbor. 

Long-eared Owl- Hampshire County.

Dark-morph Red-tailed Hawk (lower bird) Eastern Red-tailed Hawk (above)

Clay-colored Sparrow-Honey Pot, Hadley (Feb 25,2012)
Gadwall-female. Umass Campus Pond (Feb 25, 2012)