Sunday, March 3, 2013

Westminster/Fitchburg 3/3/13

Wild Turkeys are now hitting our yard and feeder pretty hard, this morning 33 showed up!

Karin captured these "retreating" from the yard last Tuesday.
A few "toms" displayed, see the video clip below, while we watched from the deck. Eventually a few birds flew up to the deck and fed just a few yards away from the opened kitchen door. Yesterday I noticed the first Red-winged Blackbirds and a single Brown-headed Cowbird just down the road a bit from home.

Another male framed through the woodwork of the deck.

I did a little birding in Fitchburg and Westminster this afternoon, notable birds were my first local Turkey Vultures and a single Common Grackle. Common and Hooded Mergansers were in a few locations and there was a nice congregation of gulls on Saw Mill Pond, on the Fitchburg/Westminster border. Of the 400+/- present about 350 were Herring, 40+ Great Black-backed and 1 Ring-billed. 
A Red-tailed Hawk on a mill smoke stack along the Nashua River in Fitchburg
Back in early February, I had seen a **** (white-winged..likely an Iceland) at the Valley Shopping Plaza in Fitchburg,  while Karin and I had loaded up the groceries. Yesterday it was again present, so I returned today and got a few photos of the bird as it loafed atop a vacant store. In viewing through the scope I could see the light colored eye, thus making this a 2nd winter bird.
2nd winter (note the light eye) white-winged gull**** atop a vacant store
a closer view of the white-winged gull***

Hooded Mergansers and a pair of Common Goldeneye on Saw Mill Pond.

Two handsome drake 'hoodies"

A pair of Red-tailed Hawks at Fitchburg Airport.
I had hoped to see a Killdeer or two at the Fitchburg airport but struck out. With a fair amount of snow cover in north Worcester County the Killdeer arrival maybe delayed a bit in higher elevations, same for American Woodcock. However each of these will likely show in the next few weeks.

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