I was expecting a less than stellar weekend. Alan was supposed to have to work straight through and be in DC for the next couple of weeks with no breaks. Then last night he called, late, but on his way home. I figured he would be too tired to do much, but he was up bright and early and said, "Let's go to Montezuma."
And so we did.
Best day birding ever. We saw so many thousand birds it was insane.
At least seven. Or maybe eight. Or maybe more, Bald Eagles, hunting right under the observation tower where we were standing. They were so impressive and amazing and all, that I cut my hand on the tower railing, said ouch, and never stopped watching. Climbed down and discovered that I was bleeding all over the place....just made sure I didn't drip all over my stuff and went right on birding. Alan had to chase me down with a Band-aid.
|Rusty Blackbird yea or nay?|
*Update:verified! First I've seen in decades. Identified them by learning their song and listening for them in groups of more common blackbirds
I am pretty sure I spotted Rusty Blackbirds. I have photos, and just need to get them checked out by wiser birders.
Talked to a fellow on one of the observation platforms that informed us about a lot of what he could see or had seen with his better than ours equipment. That is one thing I have missed...other birders to talk to like that. I am mostly self-taught (and thus personally to blame for all my bad IDs), and meeting someone like that was pretty cool.
|What a day! What a place!|
Saw Ruddy Ducks, the most improbable chestnut color, bobbing up from dives like so many bathtub toys. Cutest things ever. As always we are going to need help with one gull and some sandpipers. They are so HARD!
A tentative list of what we spotted and ID'd
Arctic Tern (according to the bird man...all I could tell is that they were medium-sized terns)
Great Blue Heron
Osprey (Flying, as well as feeding chicks on a nest)
Rusty Blackbird (?)
Northern Rough-Winged Swallow
Tree Swallow (thousands)
Some small sandpipers yet to be identified. Update: Dunlin, and I figured it out all by myself and then had it verified. Go me. lol
And probably more that I missed getting on the list because there was so much to see.
What a day!
|A Bald Eagle had just passed putting up hundreds and hundreds of ducks|
You can see a few of them here