2 December 2022

Merlin

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Merlin, Beech Hill, Rockport, Maine, 22 January 2013.

Merlin.

I believe the temperature actually rose to about 15 degrees (F) today—warmer than I expected. Still a little nippy, though. When Jack and I finally got brave enough to head up Beech Hill, a slight breeze had risen. “Slight” is the key word here, because the temps were likely no higher than 10 or 12 by then. Clear, though.

Still, I wonder why we met no one else up there—no humans or dogs, I mean. Fact is, we met no birds or other critters, either. By the time we reached the summit, I was thinking I’d have no species on my Beech Hill List today for the first time in a while. At least there was a nice rising moon. At the north side of Beech Nut, I turned to look up at it, and there, at the tip of a spruce, facing us, sat a merlin.

On our return, I saw—flitting away from the same spruce grove in fact—a shrike. Then seven or eight crows flew silently by. And at the road, I heard (then saw) a couple of kinglets and a downy woodpecker.

Nature never fails to deliver, if you just look around.

Beech Hill List
Beginning at 3:15 p.m., I hiked the open trail.

1. Merlin
2. Northern shrike
3. American crow*
4. Golden-crowned kinglet
5. Downy woodpecker

Elsewhere

6. American robin (v)
7. Herring gull
8. Rock pigeon

v = voice only
*Also elsewhere

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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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