Thursday, January 14, 2010
Day 14--King Eider (Not)
I am now wrapping up the second week of this big year. The birding the last 2 days has been somewhat slow, and my key target bird--king eider--eluded me after several tries to locate one north of Boston. This is a hard bird to find in general, so not seeing it is not a surprise. Missed birds comes with the birding territory. While there will be other chances in the year ahead to see the king eider, it is always nice to find a bird sooner than later. The photo above of a group of common eiders is a substitute for missing the king eider, and the "distant" birds was the best I could do with my cell phone camera (click on photo to enlarge). I am getting a camera with a zoom lens in the next few days to remedy this shortcoming.
While the total bird count was much lower than in Texas and Florida the week before, it still was quite enjoyable birding in the frigid winter weather. Equally good over the past few days was the chance to eat some lobster rolls and fried clam rolls as I wandered around Newburyport, Gloucester and Rockport, MA. And as part of that wandering I stopped at the Mass Audubon Drumlin Farm in Lincoln, MA. this morning. I still remember calling the Mass Audubon bird hotline back in the early 70's when I first started birding. Mass Audubon began way back in 1896, and was key to helping to stop the slaughter of birds used at the time in women's fashion. Today the National Audubon Society continues to be a strong advocate for birds and other wildlife.
The bird count for week 2 came to 61 species seen and 1 heard, and the number of new species added for the year was 34, making the YTD total 187. I still have tomorrow to bird as I work my way back down to North Carolina from New England. Maybe I will find something special--stay tuned!