Fairhaven


Yesterday I was fortunate enough to be able to take a small trip to Fairhaven, MA to chase a Common Gallinule that has been hanging around a small area for about two weeks. Not only was I successful in seeing the gallinule, I was also excited to see some other cool birds. Upon arriving, I found five birders already present including Carolyn Longworth, who originally found the bird, and Dan Logan. Carolyn quickly pointed the bird out to me and I got a pretty good view of it in the back of the pond as it swam around a patch of open water with an American Coot. Other birds in the water included a family of Mute Swans, plenty of American Wigeon, Mallards, and a few Gadwall, American Black Ducks, and one Green-winged Teal. A Belted Kingfisher flew noisily back and forth, while a couple of Great Blue Herons quietly napped in slightly hidden places. Of course, the immature Sora was seen in the open before I arrived there and did not make another appearance in my two hours watch. However, I picked out a Rusty Blackbird on the other side of the wetland and snagged a few shots as it perched and later as it flew across the water towards us. This was a lifer I have been hoping to see for a while, and a bird I find very attractive. Along with the gallinule it made for a two lifer day! Other notable birds were small groups of Pine Siskins and a single American Pipit flying over.

After the excitement on Egypt Lane I biked a little ways down the bike trail and found a couple Blue-headed Vireos, both species of kinglets, more Pine Siskins, and a single beautiful male Purple Finch I saw just as I was looking up from a tiny Brown Snake basking on the trail. I was setting up my camera to get some good pictures of the snake when a passing couple failed to keep their dog away from me as I was crouched on the side of the paved trail. It came up and sniffed me and my backpack not even noticing the snake. Just after they left, the snake had clearly had enough and slithered into the nearby thickets. I straightened my back, disappointed, and noticed the Purple Finch quietly eating cherries in the tree right in front of me. It was mostly obscured by foliage the whole time I watched it, but it was still nice to see one so close.

http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S20222008

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Avian Obsession © 2020 Evan Lipton

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