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August 23, 2016 [LINK / comment]
Birding along the Chesapeake Bay
As noted in a separate travel-oriented blog post, one of the reasons for the day trip which Jacqueline and I took to the Chesapeake Bay on Saturday was to look for birds that frequent marshy areas along the coast. In particular, I was hoping to be there for the release of a Bald Eagle that had been rehabilitated by the Wildlife Center of Virginia, located south of Waynesboro. The release took place as scheduled at Belle Isle State Park in Lancaster County (see wildlifecenter.org), but between traffic delays (near Richmond) and various "touristy" diversions, we just couldn't get there on time. I was sad to miss the opportunity to witness that, but we had a nice consolation prize. While approaching one Dameron Marsh, one of the natural havens along the Chesapeake Bay, we encountered a Bald Eagle in a tree right in front of us! I was spellbound, and quite happy to get such a nice, well-lit photo.
Among the other birding "highlights" that day, one was rather frustrating: I saw numerous Greater Black-backed Gulls and Double-crested Cormorants perched along the Robert O. Norris Bridge, which crosses the Rappahannock River. It would have been an excellent photo op, but there was no place to park on the bridge. At the first of the two nature preserves we visited, Hughlet Point, I heard a distinct chipping call in the trees, like an Indigo Bunting. Then I saw something moving and got a clear view of a male Blue Grosbeak, the first one I've seen this year. From the observation deck, I saw several Ospreys, gulls, and what I thought were small sandpipers. My field guide says there are no sandpipers that breed along the mid-Atlantic coast, however, so I'm guessing they were either Wilson's Plovers or Piping Plovers. I'll have to check to see which one is more likely. At Dameron Marsh I saw a Ruby-throated Hummingbird just a few feet away, as well as a probable Yellow-billed Cuckoo. Unfortunately, I didn't see any of the specialized coastal herons (Tricolored Herons or Little Blue Herons) I had hoped for, so I'll have to devote more time and preparation to find those birds the next time I'm in that region.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Osprey, Laughing Gull, Bald Eagle, American Goldfinch, Double-crested Cormorants and possible Royal Terns, and in the center, Great Blue Herons and a Killdeer. Roll your mouse over the image to see an enlarged view of the Bald Eagle.
More photos can be found on the Wild Birds yearly photo gallery page. Here is a list of the more signficant birds I saw that day, in approximate chronological order:
- Great Blue Herons
- Double-crested Cormorants
- Herring and/or Ring-billed Gulls
- Greater Black-backed Gulls
- Laughing Gulls
- Blue Grosbeak
- Wilson's Plovers ?
- Royal Terns ?
- Bald Eagle
- Yellow-billed Cuckoo
- Ruby-throated Hummingbird
- American Goldfinch
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 24 Aug 2016, 1: 53 AM
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Hits on this page (single blog post) since July 2, 2007:
Culture & Travel
Science & Technology
This (or that) year's
January 10, 2016 ~ Cooperstown calls Griffey, Piazza
January 17, 2016 ~ ABC field trip to Highland (& Bath!) County
January 21, 2016 ~ R.I.P. Glenn Frey
January 26, 2016 ~ Sweet Briar College is saved!
January 31, 2016 ~ Presidential campaign begins
February 6, 2016 ~ Fall bird migration season 2015
February 20, 2016 ~ Life bird: Virginia Rail!
February 21, 2016 ~ 2016 primaries: populists propel polarization
March 10, 2016 ~ Yes, another Wrigley Field update!
March 26, 2016 ~ Trump triumphs, Republican Party implodes
April 4, 2016 ~ Opening Day(s) in America, 2016! (& Sportsman's Park update)
April 18, 2016 ~ R.I.P. Alan L. Clem
April 21, 2016 ~ Flying out to So. Dak. (& back)
April 30, 2016 ~ Trump & Clinton take commanding leads
April 30, 2016 ~ Migration season reaches peak
May 7, 2016 ~ Trump secures victory; Sanders fights on
May 21, 2016 ~ ABC field trip to Reddish Knob
June 7, 2016 ~ ABC field trip to Highland County
June 9, 2016 ~ FOD [first-of-decade] Prothonotary Warblers!
June 14, 2016 ~ Birding on Hite Hollow Road
June 16, 2016 ~ Holy $#!+ -- Nationals win big showdown with Cubs
July 1, 2016 ~ Nationals sweep the Mets, widen NL East lead
July 3, 2016 ~ Kentucky Warblers, and more!
July 8, 2016 ~ Soras breeding in the Valley!
July 13, 2016 ~ Redistricting reform movement is growing
July 16, 2016 ~ The Nationals' starting rotation
August 5, 2016 ~ New page: Stadium profiles!
August 7, 2016 ~ Magical mushroom tour*
September 7, 2016 ~ To the northeast: Baseball road trip, 2016
September 18, 2016 ~ East by Northeast: Big city scenery travelogue
September 25, 2016 ~ Nationals win National League East Division
September 27, 2016 ~ Lucky! 13 warblers on Betsy Bell Hill
October 2, 2016 ~ Nationals' regular season ends on a high note
October 5, 2016 ~ Shenandoah National Park birding (II)
October 14, 2016 ~ Nationals flinch, Dodgers advance to NLCS
October 14, 2016 ~ Shenandoah National Park getaway
October 16, 2016 ~ World War II aircraft show (II)
October 25, 2016 ~ Holy cow: Cubs beat Dodgers, win NL pennant!
November 3, 2016 ~ The Cubs win the World Series!!!
November 4, 2016 ~ New month arrives, & new birds too
November 6, 2016 ~ Campaign 2016 grinds to a nasty, ugly end
Blog highlights have been compiled for the years 2010-2012 thus far, and eventually will be compiled for earlier years, back to 2002.
The "home made" blog organization system that I created was instituted on November 1, 2004, followed by several functional enhancements in subsequent years. I make no more than one blog post per day on any one category, so some posts may cover multiple news items or issues. Blog posts appear in the following (reverse alphabetical) order, which may differ from the chronological order in which the posts were originally made:
- Wild birds (LAST)
- Science & Technology
- Latin America
- Culture & Travel
- Canaries ("Home birds")
- Baseball (FIRST)
Also see: My blog practices.
Blog errata (Nobody's perfect.)