Monday, March 14, 2016

more Niagara Falls

We returned to Niagara Falls this past weekend for the opening of Gerry's show "Made of Thunder, Made of Glass II" at the Castellani Museum at Niagara University. Here's the links:
Castellani Museum and Facebook page 

lesser and great black-backed and ring-billed gulls
Of course, I immediately went over to the falls on arrival! The weather was great, hardly any snow and no wind. Lots of gulls and large rafts of ducks awaited me!

common goldeneye

Male common goldeneyes were doing their "dance" trying to impress the ladies.

common goldeneye


redheads and gadwalls
  I've never seen such large numbers of redheads, we're lucky to have 4 or 5 at one time in Vermont.

redheads, gadwalls and a bufflehead

redhead pair


tundra swans

ring-billed gulls and a lesser black-backed
It was nice to see gulls in breeding plumage and they were pretty noisy!

American herring gull

lesser black-backed gull

lesser black-backed gull

Friday, February 19, 2016

Cape Ann - from Gloucester to Rockport

Jodrey Pier, Gloucester
A favorite birding destination in the winter is Cape Ann, from Gloucester to Rockport, Massachusetts. I found this link to a map of birding spots along the way, most of which we hit. Thanks to Bryan Pfeiffer for posting this!

common eiders
We started at Gloucester Harbor, it was a brilliantly sunny day.

American herring gull

The most numerous birds were common eiders and herring and great black-backed gulls.

common loon

red-breasted merganser

surf scoter

great black-backed gull

purple sandpipers
The birds are plentiful but if the wind is blowing - it's brutal! If you go, dress warmly, bring lots of layers, even if the temperatures are above freezing as they were this day. 

purple sandpipers

harlequin ducks and a common eider

The harlequin ducks are fun to watch, they love to ride the waves and stay really close to the rocky shore.

harlequin ducks, a common eider and red-breasted merganser

redheads and mallards
We spent all day driving around the shoreline, finding lots of great birds. The worst part was getting there, we hit rush hour traffic coming and going! Still, it was a fabulous day of birding!

Monday, February 15, 2016

Peaceful Waters

Peaceful Waters, a 30 acre wetlands park, in Wellington, Florida is a must for any birder or photographer visiting Palm Beach county. Birds were everywhere when we visited in January.

Great egrets, white ibis, tricolored heron, roseate spoonbills, wood stork
The park has 1500 feet of elevated boardwalks and a mile of walking trails. Here's a link to their website. Peaceful Waters Sanctuary

Roseate spoonbills were just one of the many species that lined up on the railings along the boardwalk.

tricolored heron

tricolored heron

white ibis
There is such a variety that you can spend all day here!

wood storks

wood stork

green heron
glossy ibis and mottled ducks

common gallinule

purple gallinule

long-billed dowitchers

ring-billed gulls and Forster's tern

Florida has done a great job turning their wastewater treatment facilities throughout the state into wetland sanctuaries!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Florida - White

white pelicans
A recent trip to Florida took me to the Lake Worth area which has lots of great birding spots. Since most of us in Vermont aren't seeing too much of the white stuff (snow!) I thought I'd do a post on all the white birds I photographed!

white ibis
My friend Ron took me to Peaceful Waters Sanctuary in Wellington, a real favorite of Ron's and now one of mine too. Peaceful Waters is a 30 acre wetlands park with 1,500 feet of elevated nature boardwalks and one mile of walking trails and thousands of birds!!

wood storks and white ibis
wood storks and great egrets
great egrets
great egret in breeding plumage with roseate spoonbills
wood stork
Another stop was at Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge in Boynton Beach. It encompasses 143,954 acres of northern Everglades and cypress swamp, protecting the integrity of the remaining Everglades ecosystem.

immature little blue heron
cattle egrets
cattle egret
We also visited Dreher Park in West Palm Beach where we found lots of birds very accustomed to people.

white ibis
white ibis and muscovey ducks
wood stork
White ibis are pretty common along the roads and highways, we ran across these on a walk in Lake Worth.

white ibis

The only shot I have of a snowy egret was on Snook Islands in Lake Worth.
snowy egret and brown pelican