Thursday, May 30, 2013

Plymouth Day, 5/26/2013

Laughing Gulls

Part 1 led by Glenn d'Entremont began at Plymouth Beach under tough weather conditions. Showers, strong NW wind, and temps hovering around 40F made the 5+ mile round trip challenging. Oh, and did I mention it was low tide! Many shorebirds were waaay out there! Between the eight of us, we were able to observe most of the expected species. Arctic Tern put in a brief appearance (flyby), but all too brief. Other highlights included several Piping Plovers and Least Terns (nest here in good numbers), as well as 2 Red Knots and a Roseate Tern. The tip if the beach has a large Tern and Laughing Gull nesting colony and this was where all the action was. Approximately 1,000 Common Terns and 750 Laughing Gulls were wheeling around in what seemed like utter chaos.

Roseate Tern (center)
49 species

Brant (Atlantic) 24
American Black Duck 1
Mallard 7
Red-throated Loon 2
Common Loon 11
Northern Gannet 2
Double-crested Cormorant 14
Great Cormorant 1 Imm.
Great Cormorant
Great Blue Heron 1
Osprey 3
Red-shouldered Hawk 2
Red-tailed Hawk 1 Imm.
Black-bellied Plover 30
Semipalmated Plover 12
Piping Plover 8
Willet (Eastern) 5
Ruddy Turnstone 5
Red Knot 2
Sanderling 9
Semipalmated Sandpiper 20
Dunlin 30
Laughing Gull 750  Estimate, nesting colony. Likely a low count.
Ring-billed Gull 10 - All immature birds.
Herring Gull (American) 150  Estimate. Many imm.
Great Black-backed Gull 50
Least Tern 40
Arctic Tern 1 - Flyby
Roseate Tern 1
Common Tern 1000
Common Tern
Mourning Dove 5
Belted Kingfisher 1
Willow Flycatcher 1
American Crow 5
Fish Crow 1
Horned Lark 1 - nest in the dunes
Tree Swallow 1
Bank Swallow 5
Barn Swallow 1
Carolina Wren 2
Gray Catbird 2
Northern Mockingbird 5
European Starling 10
Common Yellowthroat 2
Yellow Warbler 1
Song Sparrow 10
Red-winged Blackbird 2
Common Grackle 10
Baltimore Oriole 1
American Goldfinch 2
House Sparrow 8

The Plymouth Airport leg of the trip started at 12:00PM and attracted 20+ people. Once a year the club is granted access to the airfield inside the perimeter fence. This usually increases our chances of observing grassland bird species, most notably Upland Sandpiper. Temperatures moderated into the 50sF and showers ended, but the wind was still blowing strong. Initially things were very quiet bird wise. Then Savannah Sparrows started singing and a Grasshopper Sparrow revealed itself teed-up on a small wooden stake in the distance. Nice scope views were had by all of this secretive sparrow. A couple of Horned Larks were seen and then an Eastern Meadowlark flew across the airfield and perched on the perimeter fence. Meanwhile, directly behind our group, someone yells, "Upland Sandpiper on the fence"! There it was right up on the fence and not on the ground where we had been scanning for the better part of an hour. After admiring the Upland for a couple of minutes another grassland bird starts singing - Vesper Sparrow. Guess where it was, right up on the fence where we had entered the airfield! Seems like the right strategy is to "work" the fence line! Pretty much a clean sweep of grassland birds except American Kestrel. The Upland Sandpiper continued to spend a lot time on the fence, dropping to the ground occasionally.

Upland Sandpiper
33 species

Great Blue Heron 2
Turkey Vulture 1
Osprey 1
Cooper's Hawk 1
Red-tailed Hawk 4
Upland Sandpiper 2
Chimney Swift 8
Ruby-throated Hummingbird 1
Northern Flicker 1
Eastern Kingbird 2
Blue Jay 1
American Crow 3
Fish Crow 2
Horned Lark 2
Tree Swallow 1
Barn Swallow 2
Tufted Titmouse 1
American Robin 2
Gray Catbird 1
Brown Thrasher 1
European Starling 6
Common Yellowthroat 1
Yellow Warbler 2
Pine Warbler 1
Prairie Warbler 1
Eastern Towhee 2
Chipping Sparrow 1
Vesper Sparrow 1
Savannah Sparrow 3
Grasshopper Sparrow 1
Song Sparrow 1
Eastern Meadowlark 1
House Sparrow 2

These reports were generated automatically by eBird v3 (

*Thanks to Liam Waters for providing these nice photos.

Vin Zollo

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Mt. Auburn Cemetery-The Mother's Day Walk, 5/12/2013

Nice weather, decent numbers of birds and bird species made for a fun day for the club. We decided to go out for breakfast at International House of Pancakes and despite the long wait, we had a great time.
The species lists shows the effect of the cool spring of migration. We had good numbers of early warblers, such as yellow-rumped, but only one thrush! (I think we had about ten people on the trip.)

  17 species of warbler, 3 species of vireo. 

Magnolia Warbler

On the way home, Nancy Swirka and I went to the raven's nest at the Crown Colony office park in Quincy. About four or five young had fledged. It looked like the nest had fallen down. One lone young bird was perched on the remains of the nest. The parents were very noisy which was echoing all over the place!

Double-crested Cormorant – 1
Canada Goose – 1
Mallard – 4
Wild Turkey – 1
Ring-billed Gull – 2
Herring Gull – 2
Mourning Dove - 3
Chimney Swift – 4
Northern Flicker – 3
Least Flycatcher -2
Eastern Phoebe – 1
Great Crested Flycatcher – 2 
Eastern Kingbird -1
Blue-headed Vireo – 2
Warbling Vireo - 3
Red-eyed Vireo -1
American Crow – 1
Common Raven – 6 or 7
Black-capped Chickadee – 1
White-breasted Nuthatch – 3
Wood Thrush -1
America Robin – 35
Gray Catbird -10
European Starling – 11
Nashville Warbler – 1
Northern Parula – 17
Yellow Warbler – 3
Chestnut-sided Warbler – 2
Magnolia Warbler – 8
Cape May Warbler - 1
Black-throated Blue Warbler – 6
Yellow-rumped Warbler – 50
Black-throated Green Warbler – 12
Blackburnian Warbler – 2
Palm Warbler – 3
Bay-breasted Warbler – 2
Blackpoll Warbler – 3
Black and White Warbler – 14
American Redstart – 4 
American Redstart
Ovenbird - 2 
Common Yellowthroat – 4
Scarlet Tanager – 2
Chipping Sparrow – 7
Song Sparrow – 1
White-throated Sparrow – 6
Northern Cardinal – 4
Red-winged Blackbird – 7
Common Grackle – 50
Brown-headed Cowbird – 8
Orchard Oriole -1
Baltimore Oriole – 16
House Finch – 2
American Goldfinch – 5
House Sparrow - 5

Total: 54 species
Additional sightings:

Glenn D'Entremont -1
Dave Brown -1

*Photos provided by Steven & Christine Whitebread

Helen Harris-Cross

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Willow Brook Farm Preserve May 25, 2013

Only one person braved the cold and stormy weather to stroll with me through Willow Brook Farm Preserve this morning.  As has been true much of this spring in eastern Massachusetts, birds were singing only sporadically and were hard to find in the heavily-leafed canopy.  At this time of year, I expect to find at least 50 species at Willow Brook, far more than the 35 that were around today.  No swallows or raptors were about in the nasty conditions. Highlights included visuals of a jaunty Great-crested Flycatcher, courting Common Yellowthroats, a Cedar Waxwing, a Black-and-white Warbler, American Redstart, Ovenbird, and my personal favorite, an Indigo Bunting, all vocalizing heartily. 
Sally Avery

Great Blue Heron  3
Herring Gull  1
Downy Woodpecker  3
Hairy Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  1
Eastern Phoebe  2
Great Crested Flycatcher  4
Red-eyed Vireo  4
Blue Jay  4
American Crow  4
Black-capped Chickadee  8
Tufted Titmouse  4
White-breasted Nuthatch  1
Carolina Wren  1
Veery  4
American Robin  2
Gray Catbird  20
Cedar Waxwing  1
Ovenbird  14
Blue-winged Warbler  5    
Black-and-white Warbler  2
Common Yellowthroat  11
American Redstart  1
Yellow Warbler  1
Blackpoll Warbler  1
Pine Warbler  1
Eastern Towhee  6
Chipping Sparrow  1
Song Sparrow  2
Swamp Sparrow  2
Scarlet Tanager  1
Northern Cardinal  8
Indigo Bunting  1
Baltimore Oriole  2
American Goldfinch  2

Sally Avery

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Long Pond & Crane WMA - Falmouth 5/20/2013

I led a walk to Long Pond and Crane WMA in Falmouth this morning for the CCBC. Migrants were few and far between, but we did get some good looks at the nesters at both locations: Highlights were Wood Thrush and Gnatcatcher at Long Pond and Kestrel, Prairie Warbler, Indigo Bunting, Scarlet Tanager, Orchard Oriole, Purple Finch, Grasshopper Sparrow and Savannah Sparrow at Crane WMA.

 Long Pond, Falmouth, Barnstable, US-MA May 20, 2013 8:00 AM - 10:05 AM   31 species

 Mallard 3
 Osprey 1
 Mourning Dove 1
 Chimney Swift 8
 Red-bellied Woodpecker 2
 Downy Woodpecker 1
 Hairy Woodpecker 3
 Eastern Wood-Pewee 1
 Great Crested Flycatcher 3
 Red-eyed Vireo 4
 Blue Jay 2
 Fish Crow 1
 Barn Swallow 2
 Black-capped Chickadee 4
 Tufted Titmouse 4
 Red-breasted Nuthatch 1
 Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 2
 Wood Thrush 1
 American Robin 6
 Gray Catbird 6
 Ovenbird 5
 Common Yellowthroat 2
 Northern Parula 1
 Yellow Warbler 4
 Pine Warbler 2
 Eastern Towhee 4
 Song Sparrow 2
 Northern Cardinal 2
 Red-winged Blackbird 6
 Orchard Oriole 1
 Baltimore Oriole 4

 Crane WMA, Barnstable, US-MA May 20, 2013 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM   40 species

 Common Loon 1
 Red-tailed Hawk 3
 Rock Pigeon 2
 Northern Flicker 1
 American Kestrel 1
 Great Crested Flycatcher 1
 Eastern Kingbird 4
 Red-eyed Vireo 1
 Blue Jay 2
 American Crow 2
 Tree Swallow 4
 Barn Swallow 2
 Black-capped Chickadee 2
 Tufted Titmouse 1
 House Wren 1
 Eastern Bluebird 3
 American Robin 12
 Gray Catbird 4
 Northern Mockingbird 1
 European Starling 4
 Ovenbird 2
 Common Yellowthroat 6
 Yellow Warbler 4
 Pine Warbler 1
 Prairie Warbler 3
 Eastern Towhee 2
 Chipping Sparrow 12
 Field Sparrow 4
 Savannah Sparrow 2
 Grasshopper Sparrow 3
 Song Sparrow 2
 Scarlet Tanager 1
 Northern Cardinal 2
 Indigo Bunting 2
 Common Grackle 6
 Brown-headed Cowbird 4
 Orchard Oriole 6 this remains a good spot for this species - likely a low count
 Baltimore Oriole 2
 Purple Finch 1
 American Goldfinch 2

Greg Hirth

Monday, May 20, 2013

Wompatuck State Park - Higham 5/16/2013

On Thursday, May 16th, 19 birders participated in the South Shore Bird Club Thursday morning Wompatuck migration romp. The weather was great for us: sunny and 56 F. when we started, a very nice change from the previous weeks cold and damp day. We saw and\or heard 48 species including 12 warbler species and 5 raptors. Although we did not see nor hear an owl, we did have Turkey Vulture, Osprey and Red-tailed, Red-shouldered and Broad-winged Hawk. Among the warbler species were: Blue-winged, Magnolia and Blackburnian as well as lots of American Redstarts, Ovenbirds and Black-and-white. We were unsuccessful in trying to find Worm-eating Warbler.

Turkey Vulture 4
Osprey 1
Red-shouldered Hawk 1
Broad-winged Hawk 1
Red-tailed Hawk 2
Mourning Dove 1
Ruby-throated Hummingbird 1
Red-bellied Woodpecker 1
Downy Woodpecker 1
Hairy Woodpecker 1
Eastern Phoebe 4
Great Crested Flycatcher 4
Warbling Vireo 1
Red-eyed Vireo 7
Blue Jay 2
Black-capped Chickadee 8
Tufted Titmouse 3
Carolina Wren 1
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 2
Veery 7
Wood Thrush 4
American Robin 4
Gray Catbird 8
European Starling 1
Ovenbird 18
Blue-winged Warbler 1
Black-and-white Warbler 11
Common Yellowthroat 6
American Redstart 6
Northern Parula 1
Magnolia Warbler 1
Blackburnian Warbler 1
Yellow Warbler 4
Black-throated Blue Warbler 2
Pine Warbler 4
Black-throated Green Warbler 4
Eastern Towhee 8
Chipping Sparrow 9
Song Sparrow 1
White-throated Sparrow 2
Scarlet Tanager 3
Northern Cardinal 7
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 1
Red-winged Blackbird 1
Common Grackle 1
Brown-headed Cowbird 4
Baltimore Oriole 7
American Goldfinch

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (

Charlie Nims

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Moosehill Wildlife Sanctuary, Sharon - 4/25, 4/30, 5/7 & 5/14

The first in a series of spring bird walks led by Glenn d'Entremont kicked off at Moosehill Wildlife Sanctuary in Sharon with overcast skies and some gusts of wind as a cold front passed. Bad weather at this time of year does not seem to keep birders away. Seven birders were "rearing to go" in hopes that the migration would heat up. We'll have to wait for the next trip on April 30th! Not much going on, in fact most of the chatter was from us birdwatchers. One highlight along the Billings Farm Loop included a couple of lingering Pine Siskins.

Wild Turkey 1
Great Blue Heron 1
Buteo sp. 1
Downy Woodpecker 3
Northern Flicker 1
Eastern Phoebe 1
Tree Swallow 3
Black-capped Chickadee 7
Tufted Titmouse 5
Red-breasted Nuthatch 2
White-breasted Nuthatch 2
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 1
American Robin 2
Pine Warbler 2
Eastern Towhee 2
Chipping Sparrow 8
Northern Cardinal 3
Red-winged Blackbird 1
Common Grackle 2
Brown-headed Cowbird 7
Pine Siskin 2
American Goldfinch 4

Round 2 began on April 30th with eight people and nice weather. Conditions were fair with calm winds and temps in the 40sF.  We started off hearing a couple of Ovenbirds, a Wood Thrush, and a Blue-headed Vireo. Did we see any of them, No! This happens often at Moose Hill given that it is mostly forested, but this forces us to learn and fine tune our audio skills. One of the highlights of the trip was a great look at a Brown Creeper gathering bark from a red cedar tree to use as nesting material. Their nests are often located on dead trees with bark that has curled out. The nest is wedged up under the bark.

2 Canada Goose
3 Wild Turkey
1 Mourning Dove
1 Red-bellied Woodpecker
4 Downy Woodpecker
1 Hairy Woodpecker
1 Northern Flicker
3 Eastern Phoebe
1 Blue-headed Vireo
1 Blue Jay
5 Tree Swallow
6 Black-capped Chickadee
7 Tufted Titmouse
3 Red-breasted Nuthatch
3 White-breasted Nuthatch
2 Brown Creeper -- Gathering nesting material.
1 Eastern Bluebird
1 Wood Thrush
4 American Robin
1 Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle)
3 Pine Warbler
4 Ovenbird
2 Eastern Towhee
10 Chipping Sparrow
1 Swamp Sparrow
5 Northern Cardinal
6 Red-winged Blackbird
7 Common Grackle
3 Brown-headed Cowbird
1 Purple Finch
1 House Finch
1 Pine Siskin
4 American Goldfinch

Twelve people (nice turnout) participated in Round 3, birding around the Billings Farm Loop. Weather was perfect for bird watching; bright and sunny, calm winds and comfortable temperatures. Scarlet Tanager numbers are building and we witnessed 2 male tanagers chasing a female tanager at high speed. The competition begins! Later a Nashville Warbler was singing loud and clear and eventually gave nice, unobstructed views. In the same area a Northern Waterthrush was seen at close range bobbing and foraging in a small wet area. Still waiting for numbers of Orioles, Catbirds, Hummingbirds, and Common Yellowthroats.

Wild Turkey 1
Great Blue Heron 2
Mourning Dove 1
Downy Woodpecker 3
Hairy Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker 2
Eastern Phoebe 4
Great Crested Flycatcher 1
Blue Jay 2
Tree Swallow 3
Black-capped Chickadee 5
Tufted Titmouse 4
Red-breasted Nuthatch 2
White-breasted Nuthatch 2
Carolina Wren 2
Eastern Bluebird 1
Wood Thrush 2
American Robin 4
Ovenbird 4
Northern Waterthrush 1
Nashville Warbler 1
Pine Warbler 3
Black-throated Green Warbler 2
Eastern Towhee 1
Chipping Sparrow 8
Scarlet Tanager 3
Northern Cardinal 3
Common Grackle 3
Brown-headed Cowbird 5
Baltimore Oriole 1
American Goldfinch 4

Round 4 on 5/14 attracted 11 birders on a nice, but cold morning. Warbler diversity is increasing with new arrivals like Am. Redstart, Blackpoll, and Magnolia Warblers. Often forgot about, White-throated Sparrows do migrate and a tight group of 4-5 of them were on the Billings Farm Loop Trail. The highlight had to be the resident Pileated Woodpecker. This bird covers much ground at Moose Hill's 2,000 acres, so it's always a special sight!

Chimney Swift 2
Ruby-throated Hummingbird 1- performing courtship flight
Downy Woodpecker 1
Hairy Woodpecker 2
Pileated Woodpecker 1
Eastern Phoebe 1
Red-eyed Vireo 2
Blue Jay 1
American Crow 1
Tree Swallow 4
Black-capped Chickadee 4
Tufted Titmouse 5
White-breasted Nuthatch 2
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 1
Eastern Bluebird 1
Veery 3
Gray Catbird 5
Ovenbird 5
Black-and-white Warbler 2
Common Yellowthroat 4
American Redstart 1
Northern Parula 2
Magnolia Warbler 1
Blackpoll Warbler 1
Black-throated Blue Warbler 1
Pine Warbler 3
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) 3
Eastern Towhee 2
Chipping Sparrow 7
White-throated Sparrow 4
Scarlet Tanager 2
Northern Cardinal 2
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 1
Brown-headed Cowbird 3
Baltimore Oriole 2
American Goldfinch 3

These reports were generated automatically by eBird v3 (

Vin Zollo

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Freetown State Forest - Freetown 5/11/2013

At Freetown State Forest this morning, three birders managed to dodge most raindrops to find lots of breeding birds, notably missing the worm-eating warbler and both nuthatches. We covered the northeast section of the forest and a trail along Rattlesnake Brook. 4.5 hours, approx 10 miles. The following were counted:

Canada goose 1
Turkey Vulture 1
Osprey 4
Wild Turkey 1
Mourning Dove 4
Red-bellied Woodpecker 1
Hairy Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker 2
Eastern Phoebe 1
Great-crested Flycatcher 9
Eastern Kingbird 1
Barn Swallow 3
Blue Jay 1
Black-capped Chickadee 6
Tufted Titmouse 1
House Wren 1
Carolina Wren 1
Eastern Bluebird 2
Hermit Thrush 2
Wood Thrush 7
Veery 5
American Robin 5
Gray Catbird 12
Northern Mockingbird 1
Northern Parula 1
Yellow Warbler 10
Yellow-rumped Warbler 4
Black-throated Green Warbler 1
Pine Warbler 25
Prairie Warbler 12
Black and White Warbler 12
American Redstart 4
Ovenbird 30
Northern Waterthrush 11
Common Yellowthroat 12
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 1
Scarlet Tanager 1
Northern Cardinal 1
Eastern Towhee 38
Chipping Sparrow 23
Red-winged Blackbird 2
Common Grackle 3
Brown-headed Cowbird 17
Northern Oriole 4
Purple Finch 2
American Goldfinch 5

Warbler species: 12

Total Species: 47

Lynn Abbey

Wompatuck State Park - Hingham 5/11/2013

This morning I lead a walk at Wompatuck State Park in Hingham, MA. This
trip was cosponsored by the Brookline and South Shore Bird Clubs. About
a dozen birders braved the rainy forecast and lucked out, as we spared
any rainfall. From 6:30 AM to 11:30 AM we covered over 5 miles of
trails in Wompatuck before heading over to Marshfield to check out Ferry
Hill Thicket Conservation Area. After a brief lunch break, three
remaining members of the group made a last minute decision to visit the
MA Audubon Daniel Webster Sanctuary. The following 70 species were counted:

Wompatuck State Park, Hingham

Common Loon (flyover)
Great Blue Heron
Glossy ibis (flyovers)
Cooper's Hawk
Herring Gull (flyover)
Mourning Dove
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
Northern Flicker
Eastern Phoebe
Great Crested Flycatcher
YELLOW-THROATED VIREO - hanging out around the Visitors Center
Blue-headed Vireo
Red-eyed Vireo
Blue Jay
Black-capped Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
White-breasted Nuthatch
Carolina Wren
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Wood Thrush
American Robin
Gray Catbird

WARBLERS (16 species)
Northern Waterthrush
Common Yellowthroat
American Redstart
Northern Parula
Black-throated Blue
Black-throated Green

Eastern Towhee
Chipping Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
Scarlet Tanager (including a M/F pair)
Northern Cardinal
Brown-headed Cowbird
Baltimore Oriole
House Finch
American Goldfinch
Snowy Egret (off of Route 3A en route to Ferry Hill)

Ferry Hill Thicket Conservation Area, Marshfield

Northern Harrier (flyover)
Chimney Swift
Great Crested Flycatcher
Blue Jay
American Crow
Black-capped Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
House Wren
Carolina Wren
Gray Catbird
Black-and-white Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
Northern Parula
Yellow Warbler
Black-throated Blue Warbler
White-throated Sparrow
Northern Cardinal
Baltimore Oriole

MA Audubon Daniel Webster Sanctuary, Marshfield

Canada Goose
Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Tree Swallow
Barn Swallow (including two birds working on two separate nests
INSIDE the blind near the trail to Fox Hill)
Eastern Bluebird
European Starling
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
House Sparrow

Eddie Giles

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Squantum Point Park May 15th 2013

Squantum Point Park May 15th 2013

10 eager birders met for this last walk in the series to Squantum this spring. We all enjoyed the still ocean, the sunny but crisp early morning and the stunning views of the city as we walked along the oceanfront. The morning yielded 50 species - not bad for only 4 hours of very leisurely birding!

While the point park was still a little bit disappointing for the number of warbler species, we were amply rewarded  by a wonderful look at a Chestnut-sided Warbler after we moved over to Squaw Rock Park. This turned out to be a very “birdy” place this morning! We also had wonderful looks at Baltimore Oriole, Northern Parula, many Yellow-rumped Warblers and two species of Swallows as well as a brief but close look at a House Wren. Of note were the numerous Savannah Sparrows we saw today.



Again we ended the morning behind the Kennedy Center where we caught up with the remarkably much bigger Killdeer chicks (seen first a week ago) and where we also confirmed the presence of a Pectoral Sandpiper, which had been spotted yesterday.

Many thanks to Wayne Horridge for the wonderful photos!

Below are the full checklists:

Quincy: Squantum Point Park, Norfolk, US-MA
May 15, 2013 6:30 AM - 8:30 AM
Protocol: Traveling
0.8 mile(s)
Comments:     sunny, calm cold start 42 F to 50 + F.  receding tide
South Shore Bird Club trip
25 species

American Black Duck  1
Mallard  2
Red-tailed Hawk  1
American Oystercatcher  2     flyover.
Mourning Dove  5
Blue Jay  14     flyover.
American Crow  1
Carolina Wren  1
American Robin  14
Gray Catbird  5
Northern Mockingbird  1
European Starling  7
Common Yellowthroat  4     Heard.
Northern Parula  2
Yellow Warbler  9
Savannah Sparrow  7
Song Sparrow  5
Northern Cardinal  7
Rose-breasted Grosbeak  1     Heard.
Red-winged Blackbird  11
Common Grackle  16
Brown-headed Cowbird  2
Baltimore Oriole  2
American Goldfinch  10
House Sparrow  6
View this checklist online at

Quincy: Squantum, Squaw Rock Park, Norfolk, US-MA
May 15, 2013 8:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Protocol: Traveling
0.6 mile(s)
Comments:     sunny 60F
36 species

Brant  2
American Black Duck  2
Mallard  2
Double-crested Cormorant  5
Great Egret  2
Osprey  1
Herring Gull  X
Great Black-backed Gull  X
Common Tern  2
Eastern Phoebe  1     Heard.
Blue Jay  9
Northern Rough-winged Swallow  3
Barn Swallow  2
Red-breasted Nuthatch  1
White-breasted Nuthatch  1
House Wren  1
Carolina Wren  1     Heard.
Wood Thrush  1     Heard. Same location as on previous visit
American Robin  7
Gray Catbird  6
Brown Thrasher  2
European Starling  8
Black-and-white Warbler  1
Common Yellowthroat  1     Heard.
Northern Parula  3
Chestnut-sided Warbler  1
Yellow-rumped Warbler  7
Black-throated Green Warbler  2     Heard.
Field Sparrow  1     very brief look, pink bill seen.
Savannah Sparrow  1
Song Sparrow  4
Northern Cardinal  2
Red-winged Blackbird  8
Common Grackle  3
Baltimore Oriole  2
House Sparrow  3
View this checklist online at

Quincy: Squantum Salt Pannes, Norfolk, US-MA
May 15, 2013 10:00 AM - 10:15 AM
Protocol: Stationary
Comments:     sunny, low 60 F
South Shore Bird Club trip
10 species

American Black Duck  12     FOY Black Duck ducklings.  1 Adult, 11 Juveniles.
Osprey  1
Killdeer  3     saw adult bird and two chicks, which were remarkably bigger than a week ago.
Least Sandpiper  6
Pectoral Sandpiper  1
Tree Swallow  3
Barn Swallow  2
Red-winged Blackbird  7
House Finch  1
House Sparrow  3
View this checklist online at

 Christine Whitebread



Wompatuck State Park - Hingham 5/9/2013

NEWS FLASH: Warbler Breakthrough

This morning, 12 SSBC members went on the Wompatuck SP migration trip led by Charlie Nims. AND, they made a major discovery: warblers are back! Despite the rain showers and flat light, we were able to tally 11 warbler species along with some other neat birds. The wet clothing and soggy feet were a nominal price to pay for some good birds. The warblers included: Northern Waterthrush, Ovenbird, Blue-winged, Blackpoll, Black-and-white, Pine, Yellow, Northern Parula, Black-throated Green, Palm and American Redstart.

The highlight, however, for most if not all of the group was a very cooperative Barred Owl. It was first discovered by Joe Scott at a distance of ~50 yds but still giving good views. Five minutes after it flew away, we encountered it again, right over the trail where everyone could get up close and personal views . A very happy group regardless of the weather.

Other highlights included a drumming Ruffed Grouse, Fish Crow, Veery (2), several Wood Thrush, Red-eyed Vireo and Baltimore Oriole.

Among the species homo sapiens, we had a nice sighting of and discussion with Ian Davies who is home from UMass.

Be sure to join us next Thursday, May 16th at 6:45 a.m. for our next Wompatuck SP walk. We meet in the parking lot across from the visitor center (Hingham).

Charlie Nims

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Squantum Point Park May 8th 2013

Squantum Point Park May 8th 2013
This was a walk offered jointly with DCR and Quincy Park Department’s Environmental Treasures program.
Maggi Brown of DCR and Sally Owen of Quincy introduced themselves and their programs to the group. Extra Binoculars were shared and then the group of 23 attendees headed out toward the spot where the Virginia Rails were seen last week. No luck today! Other than a Baltimore Oriole heard by only 2 members of the group nothing note worthy showed up until a large flock of migrating Blue Jays flew overhead.

When we got to the outermost point, we had scope and binocular looks at the resident American Oystercatchers. One of them stayed put feeding, while the other three kept circling and calling – a lovely spectacle to observe!

Yellow was the color of the day: Numerous Yellow Warblers,  as well as American Goldfinches and a Common Yellowthroat were calling along all the paths, so everyone had a chance at good looks in one spot or another. A brief drenching did not deter us, but unfortunately our persistence was not rewarded with a wider variety of birds.

A few of us then stopped again at the Kennedy Center (opposite of Moswetuset Hummock) on the way home. Here we had some great looks at two cute Killdeer chicks together with an adult.

Many thanks to Jill Goddard and Steven Whitebread for the photos

Below are the complete lists:

Quincy: Squantum Point Park, Norfolk, US-MA
May 8, 2013 6:00 AM - 8:30 AM
Protocol: Traveling
1.5 mile(s)
Comments:     overcast, a brief shower temps about 60 F.  South Shore Bird Club Walk offered with DCR and Quincy Park Dept. Environmental Treasures Program
23 species

American Black Duck  3
Mallard  2
Double-crested Cormorant  1
Great Egret  1
American Oystercatcher  4
Greater Yellowlegs  1
Herring Gull  2
Mourning Dove  6
Blue Jay  45     Migrating overhead aprox. count.
Tufted Titmouse  1
Carolina Wren  1     Heard.
American Robin  4
Gray Catbird  1
Northern Mockingbird  1
European Starling  3
Common Yellowthroat  1
Yellow Warbler  17
Song Sparrow  2
Northern Cardinal  3
Red-winged Blackbird  12
Common Grackle  50
Orchard Oriole  1
American Goldfinch  6

View this checklist online at

Quincy: Squantum Salt Pannes, Norfolk, US-MA
May 8, 2013 8:30 AM - 8:45 AM
Protocol: Stationary
Comments:     South Shore Bird Club Trip
High tide, overcast
8 species

American Black Duck  2
Great Egret  1
Snowy Egret  1
Osprey  1
Killdeer  3     two very small chicks and 1 Adult
American Robin  2
European Starling  2
House Sparrow  X

View this checklist online at
This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (

Christine Whitebread

Saturday, May 11, 2013

North Shore Century Run - 05/04/2013

The first Saturday in May is the club's annual North Shore Century Run.
An attempt to see or hear 100 or more species in a day.

This trip dates back to at least 1967, when Warren Harrington began leading this trip.
Twenty years later, I started to attend this trip, a year after getting bitten by the birding bug.
It was my favorite trip, then and still is today!

A small band of birders would meet in Marshfield, climb into Warren's van and head north.
It was a day of many stories, traditions, great laughs and good birding.

Starting in 2005, I began leading the trip. I have continued the follow the same route with a couple extras stops along the way.

As one might suspect, the timing of this trip is not prime time May. However, it can deliver an interesting assortment of winter hold overs and early spring migrants, along with a mix of weather from cold to heat.

Other times, you are kind of stuck in the middle. As was the case this year. A lot of the wintering ducks and other typical winter species had moved out, and the spring migrants had yet to show up in force.

As such, and despite best efforts, we only manged 94 species for the trip. Looking back at old records, this happens every 12 -15 years or so.

Although the band of birders have gone their separate ways, I hope those who attend this trip still find it enjoyable and challenging.

Early morning Crooked Pond

Below is a list of the species seen or heard for this year.

American Robin Crooked Pond
Tree Swallow Crooked Pond
Song Sparrow Crooked Pond
Swamp Sparrow Crooked Pond
Northern Cardinal Crooked Pond
Mallard Crooked Pond
Pine Warbler Crooked Pond
Wood Thrush Crooked Pond
Canada Goose Crooked Pond
Black-capped Chickadee Crooked Pond
Winter Wren Crooked Pond
Ovenbird Crooked Pond
Chipping Sparrow Crooked Pond
Mourning Dove Crooked Pond
Downy Woodpecker Crooked Pond
Tufted Titmouse Crooked Pond
Brown-headed Cowbird Crooked Pond
Double-crested Cormorant Crooked Pond
American Goldfinch Crooked Pond
Red-winged Blackbird Crooked Pond
White-breasted Nuthatch Crooked Pond
Brown Creeper Crooked Pond
Great Blue Heron Crooked Pond
Northern Flicker Crooked Pond
Pileated Woodpecker Crooked Pond
Red-bellied Woodpecker Crooked Pond
Hooded Merganser Crooked Pond
Wood Duck Crooked Pond
Common Grackle Crooked Pond
Broad-winged Hawk Crooked Pond
Eastern Phoebe Crooked Pond
Eastern Bluebird Crooked Pond
American Crow Crooked Pond
Black-throated Green Warbler Crooked Pond
Ruby-crowned Kinglet Crooked Pond
Blue-headed Vireo Crooked Pond
Blue Jay Lynnfield Marsh
Mute Swan Lynnfield Marsh
Herring Gull Lynnfield Marsh
Laughing Gull Lynnfield Marsh
Osprey Lynnfield Marsh
Northern Rough-winged Swallow Lynnfield Marsh
Barn Swallow Lynnfield Marsh
House Sparrow Lynnfield Marsh
Killdeer Lynnfield Marsh
Yellow Warbler Lynnfield Marsh
Warbling Vireo Lynnfield Marsh
Sharp-shinned Hawk Lynnfield Marsh
Virginia Rail Lynnfield Marsh
European Starling Lynnfield Marsh
Carolina Wren Lynnfield Marsh
Rock Pigeon Route 95 South
Eastern Kingbird Peabody
Orchard Oriole Peabody
Chimney Swift Peabody
Red-tailed Hawk Peabody
Ring-billed Gull Peabody
Northern Mockingbird Peabody
American Black Duck Peabody
Brown Thrasher Peabody
Purple Sandpiper Lynn
Common Eider Lynn
White-winged Scoter Lynn
Black Scoter Lynn
Great Black-backed Gull Lynn
Common Loon Lynn
Red-breasted Merganser Lynn
Eastern Towhee Lynn
Yellow-rumped Warbler Lynn
House Wren Lynn
Brant Lynn
Great Cormorant Lynn
Bonaparte's Gull Lynn
Greater Yellowlegs Lynn
Turkey Vulture Route 95 North
Great Egret Plum Island
Merlin Plum Island
Willet Plum Island
Gadwall Plum Island
Green-winged Teal Plum Island
Snowy Egret Plum Island
Marsh Wren Plum Island
Purple Finch Plum Island
Red-necked Grebe Plum Island
Long-tailed Duck Plum Island
Red-throated Loon Plum Island
Northern Gannet Plum Island
Dunlin Plum Island
Bufflehead Plum Island
Ruddy Duck Plum Island
Wild Turkey Newbury
Bobolink Newbury
Barred Owl Newbury
Baltimore Oriole Wilmington

Mike Emmons

Monday, May 6, 2013

Fowl Meadow - Milton/Canton 5/5/2013

This trip started early (6AM) and it was cold, 37F! Ten people showed up anyways and the temperature slowly moderated under mixed clouds and calm winds. The spring migration has continued to be slow. The only migrant bird species in attendance this morning were Blue-headed Vireos (2). The group had nice looks at one right from the parking area to start. Migrant warblers were non-existant, but several species that typically breed at this location were on territory in varying numbers. Yellow Warblers are in, but Common Yellowthroats (2) and others like Gray Catbirds (1) and Baltimore Orioles (0) are nearly as common as Yellows at this point in May.

Blue-headed Vireo
 Early into the walk we pass by marsh/meadow habitat, which is slowly succeeding into swamp. Here we had nice looks at a Green Heron in flight and several Swamp Sparrows singing from the cattails. A little further down, a Wilson's Snipe was flushed from the side of the raised path and gave brief views. This is an uncommon bird in the area and is slightly late at this date. Warbling Vireos were singing, but frustratingly distant and hard to see. As we made our way down the habitat transitioned into red maple swamp. We heard the songs of Northern Waterthrush, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, and Blue-winged Warbler and had nice looks at a few of them. Many of the resident birds were seen carrying nesting material and one of our sharp-eyed observers found a Gnatcatcher nest! The drama was unfolding above us as the pair of Gnatcatchers were furiously trying to drive off 3 Brown-headed Cowbirds.

Towards the end of the trail we ran into a few Black and White Warblers, some of which will stay to breed in the swamps here. Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles were their typical vocal selves, but one call coming from the swamp sounded slightly different, like the "squeaky gate"call of a Rusty Blackbird. Common Grackles, however have a very similar call and we wanted a visual. Eventually, a couple of people had brief looks and were able to confirm that it was a late Rusty Blackbird (pale-colored eye and short, squared-off tail).

Blue-winged Warbler
*Compare and contrast this year's trip list to the 2012 trip on this Blog.

Canada Goose 7 -   With goslings
Wood Duck 2
Mallard 4
Common Loon 1 - migrating high overhead
Great Blue Heron 2
Green Heron 1
Turkey Vulture 1
Buteo sp. 1
Wilson's Snipe 1
Herring Gull (American) 10
Mourning Dove 1
Belted Kingfisher 1
Red-bellied Woodpecker 4
Downy Woodpecker 5
Hairy Woodpecker 2
Northern Flicker 1
Blue-headed Vireo 2
Warbling Vireo 5
Blue Jay 5
American Crow 4
Black-capped Chickadee 3
Tufted Titmouse 8
White-breasted Nuthatch 3
Carolina Wren 1
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 4
Veery 1 - Heard only; 'veer' call.
American Robin 13
Gray Catbird 1
Ovenbird 1
Northern Waterthrush 2
Blue-winged Warbler 3
Black-and-white Warbler 4
Common Yellowthroat 2
Yellow Warbler 21
Pine Warbler 2
Eastern Towhee 4
Song Sparrow 17
Swamp Sparrow 6
Northern Cardinal 6
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 3
Red-winged Blackbird 45
Rusty Blackbird 1 - Calling from swamp, brief views. Getting late.
Common Grackle 40
Brown-headed Cowbird 5
American Goldfinch 5
This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (

*Pictures by Steven and Christine Whitebread

Vin Zollo

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Wompatuck State Park, Hingham - 4/28/2013

It was a pretty good trip. I think there must have been around 15 people, a good mix of SSBC & BBC members. Glenn d'Entremont recorded the numbers for me. Since the gates were locked we walked in from the parking lot across the street from the visitors center at 6:30AM and got back to the cars around 10:00AM, at which point Glenn had to leave. I then took some folks down to Holly Pond Loop Road and then onto Picture Pond. Here is his list, with my additions:

Canada Goose 5
Mallard 4 
Broad-winged Hawk 1 
Red-tailed Hawk 1 
Mourning Dove 2 
Red-bellied Woodpecker 5 
Downy Woodpecker 9 
Hairy Woodpecker 2
Eastern Phoebe 10 - There is a HUGE tree that was toppled over the winter and it sure looks like one of the Phoebes is going to nest on the overturned/upended roots, which I am pretty sure would be a very natural location.
Blue-headed Vireo 1 
Blue Jay 7 
Fish Crow 1 
Black-capped Chickadee 10 
Tufted Titmouse 12 - pair building nest in a hollow in the crotch of a white pine.
White-breasted Nuthatch 5
Brown Creeper 3 
Winter Wren 4 
Carolina Wren 1 
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher 3 
Veery 2 
Hermit Thrush 4 
American Robin 13 
European Starling X 
Ovenbird 3 
Northern Waterthrush 1 
Black-and-white Warbler 8 
Pine Warbler 12 
Yellow-rumped Warbler 6 
Eastern Towhee 11 
Chipping Sparrow 20
Song Sparrow 2 
Northern Cardinal 9 
Red-winged Blackbird 1 
Common Grackle 6 
Brown-headed Cowbird 11 
House Finch 1 
American Goldfinch 5 

Eddie Giles

Wompatuck State Park, May 2, 2013, 7 AM

On a gorgeous sunny morning that started out in the mid-40's but warmed up rapidly to the mid 60's, thirteen bird club members set out in search of new migrants.  Alas, it was very quiet in terms of bird song and bird activity.   While waiting for the main gate to open, we walked the interior paths from the parking lot across the bridge and over to Gate 9 and returned to the parking lot.  Black-and-white warblers were calling in several places, but took their time in showing themselves to us.  A few of us got a fleeting look at a perched ovenbird.  An American redstart flitted at a distance and a common yellowthroat called from the tangle but didn't make an appearance.   Singing lustily, a purple finch serenaded us and gave us a brief glimpse as he flew to another tree and disappeared.  A red-eyed vireo inched along a branch of a pine tree along the main road, but few people got to see it.  On the other hand, a soaring broad-winged hawk afforded us excellent views on two occasions.  We then drove to the Pleasant Street area where very little activity was observed, so we drove on to the end to walk the path to Picture Pond.  In terms of bird life, the area was eerily quiet, but a jackhammer provided more noise than any of us cared to cope with.  We stopped at the gate leading to Holly Pond just to listen and were rewarded with the song of a well-hidden northern waterthrush.
Sally Avery
31 species

Canada Goose  4
Turkey Vulture  2
Broad-winged Hawk  1
Mourning Dove  1
Red-bellied Woodpecker  1
Downy Woodpecker  6
Eastern Phoebe  4
Red-eyed Vireo (Red-eyed)  1     Flitting in a pine tree along the main road
Blue Jay  4
American Crow  1
Black-capped Chickadee  11
Tufted Titmouse  7
White-breasted Nuthatch  2
Carolina Wren  1
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  7
American Robin  9
Gray Catbird  2
Ovenbird  6
Northern Waterthrush  1
Black-and-white Warbler  7
Common Yellowthroat  1
American Redstart  1
Pine Warbler  5
Eastern Towhee  11
Chipping Sparrow  10
Song Sparrow  1
Northern Cardinal  9
Brown-headed Cowbird  8
Purple Finch  1
House Finch  1
American Goldfinch  5

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Mayday @ Squantum

Wednesday May 1, 2013 06:30 to 09:30 Squantum

4 Members met on a beautifully sunny morning to explore Squantum Point Park. We first walked the bayside trail, where some of us heard a Yellow Warbler amongst the Cardinals, Grackles and Robins. The tide was receding, so we hoped for the resident Oystercatchers. They were not in those mudflats however. Along the Neponset we spotted several Brant and a single Greater Yellowlegs as well as one Great Egret.
We then followed the "hidden" path towards Boston Scientific. This thicket can often be very productive. Today it yielded more Yellow Warblers and a Kinglet. On the return we hit the Jackpot: TWO VIRGINIA RAILS and a BROWN THRASHER!
3 of us then moved on to Squaw Rock Park where we found two Yellow-Rumped Warblers and watched two Oystercatchers while enjoying great views over the bay towards Boston.
View from Squaw Rock towards Boston
American Oystercatcher, Chickadee and Blue Jay; Photos by Josh Fecteau
On the way home 2 of us stopped behind the Kennedy Center for great looks at Killdeer and Osprey
Below is the complete list of all 43 species we saw today.
Quincy: Squantum Point Park, Norfolk, US-MA
May 1, 2013 6:30 AM - 8:30 AM
Brant  21
Canada Goose  3
American Black Duck  1
Mallard  2
Green-winged Teal  3
Bufflehead  3
Great Egret  1
Virginia Rail  2
Greater Yellowlegs  1
Ring-billed Gull  1
Herring Gull  13
Great Black-backed Gull  2
Mourning Dove  8
Downy Woodpecker  X
Blue Jay  3
Black-capped Chickadee  3
House Wren  1     Heard.
Carolina Wren  2     Heard.
Ruby-crowned Kinglet  1
American Robin  32
Northern Mockingbird  2
Brown Thrasher  1
Yellow Warbler  5
Song Sparrow  6
White-throated Sparrow  4
Northern Cardinal  8
Red-winged Blackbird  7
Common Grackle  45
Brown-headed Cowbird  4
Baltimore Oriole  1     Heard.
American Goldfinch  7

Quincy: Squantum, Squaw Rock Park, Norfolk, US-MA
May 1, 2013 8:45 AM - 9:30 AM
Brant  5
Mallard  6
Red-breasted Merganser  40
Double-crested Cormorant  54
American Oystercatcher  2
Herring Gull  35
American Crow  2
Black-capped Chickadee  6
White-breasted Nuthatch  1     Heard.
American Robin  3
Gray Catbird  1
Northern Mockingbird  2
Yellow-rumped Warbler  2
Song Sparrow  5
Northern Cardinal  3
Red-winged Blackbird  7
Common Grackle  3
Brown-headed Cowbird  1
American Goldfinch  2
House Sparrow  5

Quincy: Squantum Salt Pannes, Norfolk, US-MA
May 1, 2013 9:40 AM - 9:50 AM

Great Egret  1
Osprey  1
Killdeer  2
Tree Swallow  1
American Robin  2
Northern Mockingbird  1
Red-winged Blackbird  4
House Finch  2     On gutter at Kennedy Center: Male dancing in front of female - cocking his tail!.

That dance was the highlight of my day!
Christine Whitebread