December 2017

Monthly Archive

Dec 11 Riverbreeze Park Field Trip Report

Posted by on 13 Dec 2017 | Tagged as: birding

cold birders Seven hardy folks braved the cold and somewhat rainy, but certainly raw, Florida wintery day to visit Riverbreeze Park. 

We started in Seminole Rest since Joe went past the turn to Riverbreeze and stopped by the traffic light in Oak Hill.  Don suggested we go to Seminole Rest since it was pretty close by.  It was very productive, netting us the bulk of our species for the day. 

Then we went to the overlook by Goodrich’s Restaurant and checked out the area.  Not much there. No White Pelicans yet, but some Blue-winged Teal flew by.  Then Joe said he would buy us all a hot drink in the restaurant.  We were all OK with that.  As we were being seated, the servers brought out menus and Joe upped his offer to breakfast for everyone.  Thank you, Joe. Continue Reading »

Ken and Beth’s Arctic Adventure: High Arctic Birds

Posted by on 07 Dec 2017 | Tagged as: birding, Wandering Members

During the course of our trip we saw a number of birds but not a great variety.  We saw Common Ravens around every settlement.  The range maps show this bird over all but the northernmost tip of Ellesmere Island year around, but we only saw them around human habitation.  Every shore stop yielded several Snow Buntings.  Again maps show the High Arctic as their summer range but these birds seemed pretty con tent there at the end of August.  Admittedly, their interpretation of summer and mine may differ; they winter in Northern Alberta.  I saw an American Pipit on the north end of Baffin Island and others saw Lapland Longspur and Common Redpoll at our last Gyrfalconstop near the south end of that island.  No one on the trip saw a Snowy Owl, which was a disappointment.  On the other hand, the highlight of the trip for birders was three visits by Gyrfalcons.  They would seemingly appear out of nowhere, always in the morning, glide over the ship for a few minutes, then bank and glide off.  They are beautiful birds almost as large as Osprey but with a much shorter wingspan.  What a treat!

Caption: Gyrfalcon, note full crop.  Photo by Terry McIntyre Continue Reading »