Waterbird Count – 12 October

Busy day today at McGulpin! The weather started out clear and cold with light northeast winds that picked up throughout the day, bringing a front through the straights into the late afternoon. The morning brought standard loon movement, though fewer Red-throats than yesterday. It was a good day for White-winged Scoters, with flocks of five to fifteen birds heading west throughout the morning and into the afternoon. A flock of fifteen Long-tailed Ducks (the first that I’ve seen this season, though I believe Darrell had some earlier on) flew west about a mile and a half out about an hour after sunrise.

Turkey Vultures and American Crows were moving in large numbers throughout the day, with some vulture kettles containing more than a hundred birds. Red-tails movement picked up into the afternoon, and interestingly they all seemed to be coming from pretty far west and heading south towards the Headlands, with almost all of the birds skipping the beach at McGulpin entirely. One Red-tail looked like a dark or intermediate morph, though we didn’t get good looks at the bird.

Canada Goose – 4

Mallard – 6

Redhead – 1

Aythya sp. – 38

White-winged Scoter – 50

scoter sp. – 6

Long-tailed Duck – 15

Common Merganser – 13

Common Loon – 7

Horned Grebe – 3

Red-necked Grebe – 1

Double-crested Cormorant – 31

Ring-billed Gull – 10
Herring Gull – 3
Other species:

Turkey Vulture – 453

Northern Harrier – 2

Sharp-shinned Hawk – 22

Bald Eagle – 8

Red-tailed Hawk – 27

American Kestrel – 1

American Crow – 187

Black-capped Chickadee – 4

Tufted Titmouse – 1

American Pipit – 3

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