28 January 2023

Eagles

January 27th, 2023
Bald Eagles (immature below and adult above), Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 27 January 2023.
Bald Eagles (immature below and adult above).

The temperature dipped back down below freezing overnight, and this morning’s trails were icy. Not too icy to tread on (carefully), though, and much preferable to yesterday’s slop. Plus, the day was a sunny one, mostly, with a few unobtrusive clouds.

And birds! Nine species today, in fact. After a slow start, with the usual suspects, things got interesting during our final descent, when we came upon another (different) Snowshoe hare (which would not pose for photos). And then, wonder of wonders, a pair of eagles circled overhead. I was lucky to spy them up beyond the leafless canopy.

Most interesting (to me) was that there was an adult and an immature bird, the latter circling quite a bit lower than the former. I was happy to get a few photos, because those were the only decent ones I got today of birds.

Similar day tomorrow. Looking forward to it!

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 8:17 a.m., I hiked all trails.

1. Black-capped Chickadee
2. Tufted Titmouse** (v)
3. Hairy Woodpecker (drumming)
4. American Goldfinch (v)
5. White-breasted Nuthatch (v)
6. Northern Flicker
7. American Crow*
8. American Robin
9. Bald Eagle

Elsewhere

10. Herring Gull
11. Rock Pigeon

Mammals

Snowshoe Hare

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

†First-of-year

A Slushy Slog

January 26th, 2023
Snowshoe Hare, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockport, Maine, 26 January 2023.
Snowshoe Hare.

I knew the rain was coming, so I prepped (emotionally, at least) for a challenging morning hike with dog. Sure enough, the overnight rain—and a temperature in the high 40s (F)—had turned the recent six-plus inches of snow into so much slush. Still, we headed up to the main Beech Hill trailhead, as always, albeit a little later than usual.

As expected, we were first up the slushy trail—wading, basically—and met no other dog or human. I saw no birds either. (Heard the two most dependable species, crow and chickadee.) But did, early on, spy the Snowshoe Hare perched outside its little warren cave.

Pretty sure it’s the same hare I’d seen twice before—same little hidey-hole, anyway—but, boy, was he sopping wet. And so were we.

A brighter, calmer morning tomorrow, and will stay below freezing all day.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 8:56 a.m., I hiked the main trail—and then some.

1. American Crow* (v)
2. Black-capped Chickadee** (v)

Elsewhere

3. Mourning Dove
4. Tufted Titmouse (v)
5. Northern Cardinal (v)
6. Wild Turkey

Mammals

Snowshoe Hare

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

†First-of-year

Sun & Species

January 25th, 2023
Golden-crowned Kinglet, Beech Hill Preserve, Rockoprt, Maine, 25 January 2023.
Golden-crowned Kinglet.

Early temps in the low-20s (F) and a mostly clear morning sky. Again we were alone on the hill, dog and I—although I did spy one man and dog from a distance—aside from nice number of bird species compared to recent days. Early on, I heard a kinglet, spotted the bird, and it posed more than a second, so I got a photo or two.

Otherwise just one posing chickadee—although in later morning, doing errands, I spied a Bald Eagle flying over Route 1.

Snow this evening, rain tomorrow. Ah, the new version of winter in Maine.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 8:10 a.m., I hiked all trails.

1. American Crow* (v)
2. Black-capped Chickadee
3. Golden-crowned Kinglet
4. American Robin
5. American Goldfinch (v)
6. Tufted Titmouse
7. Blue Jay (v)
8. Red-breasted Nuthatch (v)
9. Downy Woodpecker

Elsewhere

10. Herring Gull
11. Rock Pigeon
12. Bald Eagle

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

†First-of-year

 
Bird Report is a (sometimes intermittent) record of the birds I encounter while hiking, see while driving, or spy outside my window. —Brian Willson



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