Monday, March 9, 2015

Late Feb / Early March 2015

Very few early spring (actually late winter) migrants have arrivied in the north Worcester County hill towns this season. During most years "eary spring" migrants such as Wood Ducks, Hooded Mergansers, Turkey Vuktures, Red-winged Blackbirds, Common Grackles, Brown-headed Cowbirds and Killdeer are often wide spread in the area by this date. But with recent morning temps from -5 to 10 degrees F and 2 to 3 feet of snow on ground the early migration season is currently sluggish at best.

Along the Otter River on the 5th were 4 Common Mergansers, one was wrestling with a  "bullhead" catfish, after about 5 minutes it finally "choked it down".  On Feb 25th I spotted a largish raptor like bird in the distance over Gardner, it turned out to be a Black Vulture, my first ever for bird # 217.

Common Merganser with a bullhead.

The merg spent some time poking and re-positioning the fish, which likely had its pectoral and dorsal fins
locked in the up position.

Stilling working on lunch

About ready...

going down


A handsome Ring-necked Pheasant in Templeton, its likely origin was the Otter River Sportsman Club. 

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