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2011 Nature Walk/Event Recap and Reports

Morton National Wildlife Refuge

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Recap by Ken Thompson

It was a beautiful day for a walk. Mild temperatures made for an enjoyable morning. As we proceeded down the main path we were greeted by two “not so wild” Turkeys who watched as we passed by them. As usual we were greeted by an array of panhandling birds. Bob Grover brought his family entourage with grand children and watching their reactions was worth the price of admission.  At the end of the main path on the beach there was only a lone Long-tailed Duck on the Bay. The wind was blowing fairly hard so we only stayed for a short time.

We all had a very enjoyable, relaxing morning walk in the Morton National Wildlife Refuge escorted by all the local avian residents everywhere we went in the park. I am looking forward to next year already.

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos Below courtesy of Ken Thompson

Scavenger Hunt at Brookside

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Recap by Juliane Wohler

On Sunday, November 6th, our Young Naturalists Club was joined by Girl Scout Troop 626 for a Scavenger Hunt at Brookside.  In all we had 18 children participate, and 11 adults in attendance.

Under sunny skies, the children searched the grassy field between Green's Creek and the Gate House for acorns, moss, sassafras leaves, feathers, etc.  It was a lot of fun and after the Hunt we called out each item to make sure everyone found the right leaves, rocks, etc.

Our last item to find was litter!  The children divided into groups and took to the trails.  They did a fantastic job and the trails are looking very clean over at Brookside!  Following the litter collection we sorted out the recyclables from the garbage.

GSBAS is very thankful for all the efforts Troop 626 has made to clean up Brookside! And for helping make our Scavenger Hunt with the Young Naturalists Club such a great time!

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos Below courtesy of Juliane Wohler

Brigantine (Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge) and Cape May Field Trip

October 7th – 9th, 2011

Agenda recap courtesy of Alice Heller

Friday, 10/07/11 at 1:00 pm: Brigantine National Wildlife Refuge a Division of the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, eight (8) miles outside of Atlantic City, NJ - an Atlantic Flyway for our birds.

Saturday, 10/08/11 at:
Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, West Cape May, NJ in am;

2. The Beanery, West Cape May, NJ - a working farm - later am & early pm; and

3. Cape May Bird Observatory, Cape May Point, NJ mid/late pm for its Hawk Watch, participating in its Monarch Butterfly tagging program; birding one of its walks; the Concrete Ship; visiting the Cape May/NJ Audubon's gift shop and seeing the Cape May Lighthouse, Cape May Point, NJ.

Sunday: 10/09/11:
1.The Meadows, West Cape May, NJ which is owned by The Nature Conservancy, early am;

2. The Wetland Institute, Stone Harbor, NJ mid-morning and

3. The fishing pier in Avalon, NJ - late am and early pm.

As a group we saw two (2) sightings of a pod of dolphins at "The Meadows" beach area. And later Peter, Steve, Jody and I saw yet another pod of dolphins at the fishing pier area in Avalon, NJ. You can see a photo below of one of the pods at The Meadows/Nature Conservancy's, West Cape May, NJ.

We spotted a total of 101 species.  This list below is provided courtesy of Steve D'Amato:

  1. American Black Duck
  2. American Crow
  3. American Goldfinch
  4. American Kestrel
  5. American Pipit
  6. American Robin
  7. American Wigeon
  8. Bald Eagle
  9. Belted Kingfisher
  10. Black Scoter
  11. Black Vulture
  12. Black-and-white Warbler
  13. Black-bellied Plover
  14. Black-capped Chickadee
  15. Black-crowned Night-Heron
  16. Black-throated Blue Warbler
  17. Blue Jay
  18. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
  19. Blue-winged Teal
  20. Boat-tailed Grackle
  21. Bobolink
  22. Broad-winged Hawk
  23. Brown Creeper
  24. Brown Thrasher
  25. Canada Goose
  26. Carolina Wren
  27. Caspian Tern
  28. Cedar Waxwing
  29. Chipping Sparrow
  30. Common Grackle
  31. Common Yellowthroat
  32. Cooper's Hawk
  33. Dark-eyed Junco
  34. Double-crested Cormorant
  1. Downy Woodpecker
  2. Eastern Bluebird
  3. Eastern Meadowlark
  4. Eastern Phoebe
  5. Eastern Towhee
  6. European Starling
  7. Field Sparrow
  8. Fish Crow
  9. Forster's Tern
  10. Gadwall
  11. Golden-crowned Kinglet
  12. Gray Catbird
  13. Great Black-backed Gull
  14. Great Blue Heron
  15. Great Egret
  16. Great Horned Owl
  17. Greater Yellowlegs
  18. Green-winged Teal
  19. Herring Gull
  20. House Finch
  21. House Sparrow
  22. Laughing Gull
  23. Least Sandpiper
  24. Lesser Yellowlegs
  25. Long-billed Dowitcher
  26. Mallard
  27. Merlin
  28. Mourning Dove
  29. Mute Swan
  30. Nashville Warbler
  31. Northern Cardinal
  32. Northern Flicker
  33. Northern Harrier
  34. Northern Mockingbird
  1. Northern Parula
  2. Northern Pintail
  3. Northern Shoveler
  4. Osprey
  5. Palm Warbler
  6. Peregrine Falcon
  7. Pied-billed Grebe
  8. Red-bellied Woodpecker
  9. Red-eyed Vireo
  10. Red-tailed Hawk
  11. Red-winged Blackbird
  12. Ring-billed Gull
  13. Rock Pigeon
  14. Royal Tern
  15. Ruby-crowned Kinglet
  16. Ruddy Duck
  17. Sanderling
  18. Savannah Sparrow
  19. Semipalmated Plover
  20. Semipalmated Sandpiper
  21. Sharp-shinned Hawk
  22. Short-billed Dowitcher
  23. Snowy Egret
  24. Song Sparrow
  25. Swamp Sparrow
  26. Tree Swallow
  27. Tri-colored Heron
  28. Tufted Titmouse
  29. Turkey Vulture
  30. White-throated Sparrow
  31. Wood Duck
  32. Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
  33. Yellow-rumped Warbler

Click the photos to enlarge - Photos courtesy of Jody Banaszak, Steven D'Amato & Ken Thompson

Ed Davis Memorial Beach Cleanup

Saturday, September 17, 2011

On Saturday, September 17, 2011, thirteen (13) GSBAS members and friends traveled by ferry to Fire Island to participate in the “Ed Davis Memorial Beach Cleanup”. This cleanup is part of the 26th Annual International Coastal Cleanup led by the American Littoral Society (ALS).

The weather was clear and cool as we scoured the dunes and shoreline finding and documenting over 1,960 items (approximately 90 lbs.). These included an abundance of miscellaneous plastic pieces, plastic bottles, and balloon remnants along with shotgun shells and fishing debris.

This is a significant increase in debris collection, up 31% from last year!

Our team included Judy Davis, Janet Gremli, Peter Schramel, Jody Banaszak, Meg Newman, Lenora Daniel, Peter Daniel, Valerie Smith, Karen Smith, Andi Green, Neal Tuttle, and Peter Wimett, Jr. The National Park Service’s Ranger Dave Raymond provided information about the park and its not-so-friendly inhabitants (poison ivy and ticks) as he accompanied us on the cleanup.

We were not alone. During the month of September, the beaches of New York State, including Long Island Sound, the Hudson River, Atlantic Ocean, and the Great Lakes, Finger Lakes, and creeks and bays were cleaned up by thousands of other volunteers. The information collected by the ALS documents what litters our shores, increases public awareness, and helps devise strategies to combat pollution.

You can find out more about the American Littoral Society at http://www.alsnyc.org/

Thank you to all our volunteers!

Carol Jansch, Beach Captain

Click the photo to enlarge

Photo courtesy of Carol Jansch

GSBAS' Hummingbird Sanctuary Trip

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Recap by Alice Heller

On this bright and sunny Saturday morning, GSBAS's Hummer Nature Walk took place with Field Trip Coordinator, Alice Heller and 21 attendees meeting Paul Adams at his Private Hummingbird Sanctuary in Baiting Hollow. Please see all of the great nature/hummer pictures posted below courtesy of Jody Banaszak, Megan, Michael and Mike Mike McBrien and Helga Merryman.

All Nature Walk attendees enjoyed a wonderful visit: seeing hummers at Paul's many feeders, seeing hummers chasing each other - zipping directly overhead in hot pursuit of each other; being treated to seeing two Osprey fly by - gracefully and seemingly leisurely so - and enjoying oh those spectacularly views of the sound. And thanks to Michael McBrien, some of us got great views of a beautiful male Prairie Warbler and heard Eastern-towhee. Butterflies abounded - flitting from the many flowering plants and shrubs Paul has planted and growing in containers. We all fell in love again with Paul's special private hummer sanctuary situated on the bluff of the Long Island Sound.

GSBAS's sincere thanks to Paul Adams for scheduling this August 2011 GSBAS Hummer Nature Walk and to Dr. Mark Bridgen at Cornell for again allowing GSBAS to use its Sound Avenue parking lot.

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos Below courtesy of Megan, Michael & Mike McBrien, Helga Merryman and Jody Banaszak

Jamaica Bay NWR

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Recap by Michael McBrien

On Saturday, May 28th, I led GSBAS's trip to Jamaica Bay NWR.  A walk through the gardens was relatively unproductive with Blackpoll Warbler being the only non-breeding songbird seen.  Near Bench 12, we saw a large rail as it crossed the main trail.  The rail was unusually bright with a rufous breast, jet black flanks with noticeable white lines, and bright upperparts.  The rail was quite interesting and we speculated at its identification (King, Cling, or Clapper).  Around the West Pond, we found many shorebirds including 3 White-rumped Sandpipers.  Some waterfowl still remained including many Ruddy Ducks, 2 Greater Scaup, and 2 Red-breasted Mergansers.  In addition, an immature Snow Goose was seen as it flew by. Overall the trip was quite productive with 64 species seen.

Bashakill and Doodletown Road

May 14th and 15th, 2011

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos and recap courtesy of Steven D'Amato

The GSBAS field trip to Bashakill and Doodletown Road was from Saturday, May 14th, through Sunday, May 15th. We had 8 people attend, and a total of 95 species seen and/or heard. On Saturday, we went to Doodletown Road, Bashakill, and Mine Road. The highlight species for that day were Wood Duck, Wild Turkey, American Bittern, Turkey & Black Vultures, Osprey, Red-tailed Hawk, Killdeer, Solitary & Spotted Sandpipers, Black-billed & Yellow-billed Cuckoos, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Pileated Woodpecker, Olive-sided & Willow Flycatchers, Yellow-throated & Red-eyed Vireos, Common Raven, Bank & Cliff Swallows, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Veery, Wood Thrush, Blue-winged, Tennessee, Northern Parula, Yellow, Magnolia, Black-throated Blue, Pine, Prairie, Blackpoll, Cerulean, Black-and-white, American Redstart, Worm-eating, Ovenbird, Northern & Louisiana Waterthrushes, Common Yellowthroat, Hooded Warbler, Scarlet Tanager, Chipping, Savannah, & Swamp Sparrows, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, Brown-headed Cowbird, and Baltimore Oriole.

On Sunday, we started again at Bashakill, then went to Linear Park/McDonald Road. We added another 16 new species for the field trip. The new highlight species we saw were Green Heron, Bald Eagle, Common Moorhen, Black Tern, Chimney Swift, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Alder & Least Flycatchers, Warbling Vireo, House Wren, Swainson's Thrush, Mourning Warbler, and Bobolink.

We spotted a total of 95 species:

  1. Alder Flycatcher
  2. American Bittern
  3. American Crow
  4. American Goldfinch
  5. American Redstart
  6. American Robin
  7. Bald Eagle
  8. Baltimore Oriole
  9. Bank Swallow
  10. Barn Swallow
  11. Belted kingfisher
  12. Black Tern
  13. Black Vulture
  14. Black-and-white Warbler
  15. Black-billed Cuckoo
  16. Black-capped Chickadee
  17. Blackpoll Warbler
  18. Black-throated Blue Warbler
  19. Black-throated Green Warbler
  20. Blue Jay
  21. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
  22. Blue-winged Warbler
  23. Bobolink
  24. Brown-headed Cowbird
  25. Canada Goose
  26. Cedar Waxwing
  27. Cerulean Warbler
  28. Chimney Swift
  29. Chipping Sparrow
  30. Cliff Swallow
  31. Common Grackle
  32. Common Moorhen
  1. Common Raven
  2. Common Yellowthroat
  3. Double-crested Cormorant
  4. Downy Woodpecker
  5. Eastern Kingbird
  6. Eastern Phoebe
  7. Eastern Towhee
  8. Eastern Wood-Pewee
  9. European Starling
  10. Gray Catbird
  11. Great Blue Heron
  12. Green Heron
  13. Hooded Warbler
  14. House Sparrow
  15. House Wren
  16. Indigo Bunting
  17. Killdeer
  18. Least Flycatcher
  19. Least Sandpiper
  20. Louisiana Waterthrush
  21. Magnolia Warbler
  22. Mallard
  23. Mourning Dove
  24. Mourning Warbler
  25. Northern Cardinal
  26. Northern Flicker
  27. Northern Mockingbird
  28. Northern Parula
  29. Northern Waterthrush
  30. Olive-sided Flycatcher
  31. Osprey
  32. Ovenbird
  1. Pileated Woodpecker
  2. Pine Warbler
  3. Prairie Warbler
  4. Red-bellied Woodpecker
  5. Red-eyed Vireo
  6. Red-tailed Hawk
  7. Red-winged Blackbird
  8. Rock Pigeon
  9. Rose-breasted Grosbeak
  10. Ruby-throated Hummingbird
  11. Savannah Sparrow
  12. Scarlet Tanager
  13. Solitary Sandpiper
  14. Song Sparrow
  15. Spotted Sandpiper
  16. Swainson's Thrush
  17. Swamp Sparrow
  18. Tennessee Warbler
  19. Tree Swallow
  20. Tufted Titmouse
  21. Turkey Vulture
  22. Veery
  23. Warbling Vireo
  24. Wild Turkey
  25. Willow Flycatcher
  26. Wood Duck
  27. Wood Thrush
  28. Worm-eating Warbler
  29. Yellow Warbler
  30. Yellow-billed Cuckoo
  31. Yellow-throated Vireo

"Unfortunately, the weather was not too good so I made no attempt to take any photographs while I was up there. It wasn’t until I returned and the people in our car decided to stop off at West End, Jones Beach, when the weather gave us a break. By purest luck, there just happened to be a rare bird over there, a White-winged Dove. This is normally a species found in the southwest and into our southernmost Gulf region, but has had many records of being seen along the east coast." - Steven D'Amato

Northern Bobwhite Quail Restoration Project

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Thanks to the Environmental Office personnel at Connetquot River State Park Preserve, the museum now boasts special Northern Bobwhite Quail posters, designed by Annie McIntyre. The “feathers” on these quail posters contain the names of all the generous Adopt-A-Quail participants. One feather was created for every quail chick adopted. Why not stop by the museum and find your special feather.

On May 4th, seven hundred day old Northern Bobwhite Quail chicks arrived at their new home. A team of six volunteers worked quickly to remove the chicks from the packing crates, give each chick a few drops of fortified water by hand, and place them under the warmth of the brooding lights. It is amazing to see how tiny they are at a mere 1/5 of an ounce!

By May 13th, the chicks were already big enough to graduate from their “baby” pens to an intermediate area within the brooding house. Soon they will be ready to move to the flight pen where they will grow stronger before their release into Connetquot River State Park Preserve.

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos courtesy of Carol Jansch and Judy Davis

Annual May Dinner

Monday, May 2, 2011

Our Annual May Dinner fundraiser was held at Capt. Bill’s Restaurant in Bay Shore on Monday, May 2, 2011.  Thanks to the generosity of our members and friends we had many lovely prizes.  The dinner was a huge success and all who attended had a grand time.

This year’s award winners are:

Shai Mitra, Bob Laskowski Conservation Award
Ken Thompson, Fran File Award
Steven D’Amato, President’s Award

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos courtesy of Helga Merryman, Steven D'Amato, and Judy Davis

Central Park/Jamaica Bay NWR/Jones Beach

May 1, 2011

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos and recap courtesy of Steven D'Amato (group photo courtesy of Ken Thompson)

On Sunday, May 1st, the chapter had its annual field trip/nature walk to Central Park.  With a group of 14 people, we were able to get a combined total of 68 species of birds and one unidentified Empidonax flycatcher, though the best guess is leaning toward an Acadian Flycatcher.  The highlight species at Central Park were Wood Duck, Northern Shoveler, Green Heron, Black-crowned Night-Heron, Red-tailed Hawk, American Kestrel, Chimney Swift, Belted Kingfisher, Blue-headed & Warbling Vireos, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Veery, Swainson's & Wood Thrushes, Northern Parula, American Redstart, Ovenbird, Northern & Louisiana Waterthrushes, Common Yellowthroat, Nashville, Yellow, Magnolia, Black-throated Blue, Yellow-rumped, Black-throated Green, Blackburnian, Prairie, Bay-breasted, Blackpoll, Black-and-white, Worm-eating, & Canada Warblers, Chipping & Swamp Sparrows, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Orchard & Baltimore Orioles, and American Goldfinch.

Many people decided to go to the Jamaica Bay National Wildlife Refuge afterward.  Here, we added another 34 birds to the total number of species seen by the group in general.  The highlights here were Brant, Gadwall, American Black Duck, Green-winged Teal, Greater & Lesser Scaup, Bufflehead, Red-breasted Merganser, Ruddy Duck, Snowy Egret, Little Blue & Tri-colored Herons, Glossy Ibis, Osprey, American Coot, Black-bellied Plover, American Oystercatcher, Greater & Lesser Yellowlegs, Least Sandpiper, Laughing & Great Black-backed Gulls, Common & Forster's Terns, White-eyed Vireo, Palm Warbler, Boat-tailed Grackle, and Brown-headed Cowbird.

A few of us continued to the Jones Beach-West End area.  Here we added another 16 species to the trip.  These were Surf Scoter, Red-throated & Common Loons, Northern Gannet, Northern Harrier, Semipalmated Plover, Willet, Red Knot, Sanderling, Semipalmated Sandpiper, Dunlin, Short-billed Dowitcher, Gull-billed & Least Terns, Northern Mockingbird, and Brown Thrasher.

We spotted a total of 69 species at Central Park:

  1. American Crow
  2. American Goldfinch
  3. American Kestrel
  4. American Redstart
  5. American Robin
  6. Baltimore Oriole
  7. Bay-breasted Warbler
  8. Belted Kingfisher
  9. Black-and-white Warbler
  10. Blackburnian Warbler
  11. Black-capped Chickadee
  12. Black-crowned Night-Heron
  13. Blackpoll Warbler
  14. Black-throated Blue Warbler
  15. Black-throated Green Warbler
  16. Blue Jay
  17. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
  18. Blue-headed Vireo
  19. Canada Goose
  20. Canada Warbler
  21. Chimney Swift
  22. Chipping Sparrow
  23. Common Grackle
  1. Common Yellowthroat
  2. Double-crested Cormorant
  3. Downy Woodpecker
  4. Eastern Kingbird
  5. Eastern Towhee
  6. European Starling
  7. Gray Catbird
  8. Great Egret
  9. Green Heron
  10. Herring Gull
  11. House Finch
  12. House Sparrow
  13. House Wren
  14. Louisiana Waterthrush
  15. Magnolia Warbler
  16. Mallard
  17. Mourning Dove
  18. Nashville Warbler
  19. Northern Cardinal
  20. Northern Flicker
  21. Northern Parula
  22. Northern Rough-winged Swallow
  23. Northern Shoveler
  1. Northern Waterthrush
  2. Orchard Oriole
  3. Ovenbird
  4. Prairie Warbler
  5. Red-bellied Woodpecker
  6. Red-breasted Nuthatch
  7. Red-tailed Hawk
  8. Red-winged Blackbird
  9. Rock Pigeon
  10. Rose-breasted Grosbeak
  11. Ruby-crowned Kinglet
  12. Song Sparrow
  13. Swainson’s Thrush
  14. Swamp Sparrow
  15. unidentified Empidonax flycatcher (though leaning toward Acadian Flycatcher)
  16. Veery
  17. Warbling Vireo
  18. White-throated Sparrow
  19. Wood Duck
  20. Wood Thrush
  21. Worm-eating Warbler
  22. Yellow Warbler
  23. Yellow-rumped Warbler

Spotted at JAMAICA BAY NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE, we added to the field trip/nature walk:

  1. American Black Duck
  2. American Coot
  3. American Oystercatcher
  4. Barn Swallow
  5. Black-bellied Plover
  6. Boat-tailed Grackle
  7. Brant
  8. Brown-headed Cowbird
  9. Bufflehead
  10. Common Tern
  11. Fish Crow
  12. Forster’s Tern
  1. Gadwall
  2. Glossy Ibis
  3. Great Black-backed Gull
  4. Greater Scaup
  5. Greater Yellowlegs
  6. Green-winged Teal
  7. Laughing Gull
  8. Least Sandpiper
  9. Lesser Scaup
  10. Lesser Yellowlegs
  11. Little Blue Heron
  12. Mute Swan
  1. Osprey
  2. Palm Warbler
  3. Red-breasted Merganser
  4. Ring-billed Gull
  5. Ruddy Duck
  6. Snowy Egret
  7. Tree Swallow
  8. Tri-colored Heron
  9. Tufted Titmouse
  10. White-eyed Vireo

Finally, some of us went on to the JONES BEACH AREA (West End, Coast Guard Station, etc.) to see what was around. Here we added to "our" trip:

  1. Brown Thrasher
  2. Common Loon
  3. Dunlin
  4. Gull-billed Tern
  5. Least Tern
  6. Northern Gannet
  1. Northern Harrier
  2. Northern Mockingbird
  3. Red Knot
  4. Red-throated Loon
  5. Sanderling
  6. Semipalmated Plover
  1. Semipalmated Sandpiper
  2. Short-billed Dowitcher
  3. Surf Scoter
  4. Willet

People in the group photo – from left to right:

  1. Peter Murphy
  2. Vera Capogna
  3. Kathleen O’Connor
  4. Bill Redshaw
  5. John Gluth
  6. Johnna Vullo
  7. Nick Laviola
  8. Sandy (I don't know her surname and it seems no one else I contacted did either)
  9. Mike McBrien (sr.)
  10. Michael McBrien (jr.)
  11. George Form
  12. Steven D'Amato
  13. Anne Gibbone

"Help Feed the Quail" Berry Bush Planting

March 16, 2011

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos courtesy of Randy Schmitt

The cold, damp weather didn’t stop our volunteers from spending their day planting 100 berry bushes at Connetquot River State Park Preserve.  The bushes will become a natural food source for the Northern Bobwhite Quail.

After a morning of planting, volunteers Jody Banaszak, Judy Davis, Meg Newman, Elena Salina, Aimee and Randy Schmitt, Edith and Bob Wilson, and Cathy Wilvert were treated to a home made ziti lunch thanks to Cathy and Megan Wilvert.

With full stomachs, we returned to work creating fencing around each plant to protect them from being nibbled on by the deer.  We finished up just as the rain arrived.

Jones Beach West End

February 6, 2011

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos and recap courtesy of Steven D'Amato

We met at the Parking Field 10 by the Boat Basin/Marina next to the Coast Guard Station, and had a total of 15 people.  Weather was a little cool but sunny and clear.  We observed the bay and ocean sides from West End, then drove to the Fishing Parking Lot by the inlet and walked to the inlet to see if we could find waterfowl, shorebirds, seals, etc.  Then we went around the Loop Parkway to Point Lookout to see the Jones Inlet from the other side.  From there we went back to Field 10, then drove down Ocean Parkway to the Gilgo Marina.

We had a total of 50 species:

  1. American Black Duck
  2. American Crow
  3. American Robin
  4. American Tree Sparrow
  5. American Wigeon
  6. Black-bellied Plover
  7. Black-capped Chickadee
  8. Brant
  9. Bufflehead
  10. Canada Goose
  11. Common Eider
  12. Common Grackle
  13. Common Loon
  14. Cooper's Hawk
  15. Dunlin
  16. European Starling
  17. Fish Crow
  1. Great Black-backed Gull
  2. Great Blue Heron
  3. Great Cormorant
  4. Harlequin Duck
  5. Herring Gull
  6. Hooded Merganser
  7. Horned Grebe
  8. Horned Lark
  9. House Finch
  10. House Sparrow
  11. Killdeer
  12. Long-tailed Duck
  13. Mallard
  14. Merlin
  15. Mourning Dove
  16. Northern Cardinal
  17. Northern Flicker
  1. Northern Gannet
  2. Northern Harrier
  3. Northern Mockingbird
  4. Northern Shoveler
  5. Peregrine Falcon
  6. Red-breasted Merganser
  7. Red-tailed Hawk
  8. Red-throated Loon
  9. Ring-billed Gull
  10. Rock Pigeon
  11. Rough-legged Hawk
  12. Sharp-shinned Hawk
  13. Snow Bunting
  14. Song Sparrow
  15. White-crowned Sparrow
  16. Yellow-rumped Warbler

Breakfast & Birding at Connetquot River State Park Preserve

January 15, 2011

Click the photos to enlarge

Photos courtesy of Helga Merryman and Rosanna DeVergiles

Saturday, 15 January 2011 was a picture perfect winter day.  The air was crisp, no harsh wind, and the snow was twinkling on the trees.  The Breakfast & Birding Program at Connetquot River State Park Preserve (CRSPP) held in collaboration with the preserve, the Friends of Connetquot (FOC), and the Great South Bay Audubon Society (GSBAS), was attended by ~40 people, all anxious to get out of the house and into nature.

The morning began with a scrumptious continental breakfast put together by Pam Hunter and the FOC.  While everyone enjoyed their goodies, GSBAS trip leader, Ken Thompson, presented a “Winter Visitors of Connetquot” slide show put together by Pam Hunter and photographer and FOC Chairman, Bob Labuski.

Our walk began at the pond where we viewed Bufflehead, Common Merganser, and Hooded Merganser.  As we started up Hatchery Road, we stopped at the bird feeders to see which species were having their breakfast.  We saw Black-capped Chickadees, Tufted Titmouse, White-throated Sparrows, and to our delight, Northern Bobwhite Quail!  These quail were raised by and reintroduced into the preserve by Cathy Wilvert.  (Please see our Adopt-A-Quail form in the Jan/Feb issue of The Sandpiper, on our website, or on our Facebook.)

During the remainder of our walk we saw Canadian Geese, a Mockingbird, Brown Creeper, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, White-breasted Nuthatch, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Red-tailed Hawk, and a Great Blue Heron in flight.

Spending the morning with new friends while enjoying nature is a wonderful way to shake off the winter blahs.