January 8, 2006 [LINK]

ABC field trip on Bell's Lane

Snow Geese, Canada Geese This afternoon I joined an Augusta Bird Club field trip led by Allen Larner on Bell's Lane. Somehow he arranged to have three Short-eared owls * and two Northern harriers (one adult male, one female or immature) show up right on cue for the 12-person "audience." One of the owls briefly chased a harrier, which was entertaining. Too bad they didn't come closer. Allen pointed out to us a distant flock of Horned larks *, which I would not have recognized otherwise. Across the field several hundred Canada geese were grazing, as well as two adult Snow geese (white, of course) and one juvenile (which is pale gray, discernible on the left in the adjacent photo). I also spotted the "dark phase" or "Blue-morph" Snow goose which I had seen on Thursday, but it was too far to get a decent photo. I didn't stay for the last part of the trip, but I did catch a glimpse of a Red-tailed hawk perched in a tree on the way home.

(* = first of the season for me)