Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Nashua River waterfowl 3/18/2008

After moving and squaring away my former house I am finally starting to settle back into a "normal" schedule. I viewed the Nashua River during my lunch and went back after work to look for puddle ducks in a few depressions in a corn field adjacent to the river.

The noon-time list, from behind the horse track:
Canada Goose...50
Mute Swan...2
Wood Duck...16
American Wigeon...1
American Black Duck...4
Mallard...4
Canvasback...5 (an uncommon migrate in this area)
Ring-necked Duck...14
Common Goldeneye...15
Hooded Merganser...48
Common Merganser...20
Great Blue Heron...1
Red-tailed Hawk...2
Ring-billed Gull...1
Great Black-backed Gull...4
Belted Kingfisher...1
Tree Swallow...2
Black-capped Chickadee...2
Tufted Titmouse...1
White-breasted Nuthatch...1
Brown Creeper...1
Eastern Bluebird...1
Song Sparrow...1
Northern Cardinal...1
Common Grackle...2

The list from the evening from 2 different vantage points, Gardner Farm and behind the horse track, most of the puddle duck were are Gardner Farm:

Canada Goose...400
Mute Swan...3
Wood Duck...8
American Black Duck...30
Mallard...300
Northern Pintail...3
Green-winged Teal (American)...11
Ring-necked Duck...24
Bufflehead...1
Common Goldeneye...3
Hooded Merganser...60
Common Merganser...75
Great Blue Heron...3
Great Black-backed Gull...3 (one had a small Largemouth Bass)
Mourning Dove...1
Tufted Titmouse...2
White-breasted Nuthatch...1
Eastern Bluebird...1
American Robin...15
European Starling...400
Song Sparrow...2
Red-winged Blackbird...20
Common Grackle...2
House Sparrow...5

It is alway nice to watch groups of Mergansers displaying courting behavior, the drake Hoodies "throwing" their heads back while the Commons are involved in animated chases on the water. Also seen were 3 or 4 Muskrats and a River Otter.

3 comments:

PA-Birder said...

Sounds like a very productive area. I like the note about the bass fishing Gull. Do these birds fish or was it scavenging a dead fish?
Vern

Larry said...

I've not seen a Blue-winged teal or a Wigeon this month.-I am looking forward to seeing those two.-Nice list of birds.I see you're ready to get back in the swing of birding and posting again!

Tom Pirro said...

Vern,
I am not sure how the gull got the bass, another possibility is it could have stolen it from one of the mergansers. The fish appeared to be about 8" long.

Larry,
Blue-winged teal should be showing in the north central mass area soon. However they are not very common, Bolton Flats in the towns of Bolton and Lancaster, ma. is a good location of dabbling ducks and a few show there each spring.