Listing of some of the great CT birding spots. Connecticut has more than its share of great birders , but the one area of the state that receives less attention than it deserves is the northeast quarter. I'll define this area as anywhere east of the Connecticut River and North of Willimantic (Windham), although, of course, I may stretch the boundaries at any time. 2013 - I'm traveling more - to the SW so far, and I'll add some info about my adventures there.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Warm-up for Lighthouse Point

Headed out this AM as I have the last few weeks to Boston Hollow.  For a change it was clear and dry and cool with a stiff breeze.  And BH was quiet - too quiet.  I was wondering if the time has arrived when there will be less and less birds making less and less noise.  For the first time this spring I didn't hear a single Canada Warbler anywhere.  I reached Barlow Mill Rd and turned onto it, stopping at the marsh 100 yards down the road.  Its really the first place that the sky opens up.  I scanned the ridge line and snagged a hawk, just clearing the top of the ridge and gliding down over the marsh.  It was a Broad-wing, moving fast and soon gone over the trees behind me.  A good find, and made the day feel a little better.  I moved up the road a few hundred yards to a field that was once someone's yard, only the foundation and chimney now left after the apparent fire.  I don't usually find much there, but pulled into the drive and shut  down to listen.  Immediately I heard the screams of a Red-shouldered Hawk, and checking the sky to the left I spotted 2 of them, circling with each other, making a racket and moving east with the wind. The larger one was tattered and torn, perhaps a female recently finished with nesting duties, but the other looked pristine.  I followed them for a while, but just as I looked away I heard them calling again with renewed vigor.  When I looked back there were five hawks up in front of me!  I sorted them out into three Shoulders and two Red-tails.  They milled around for a minute, and then the original two moved on to the east, the others disappearing beyond the tree line.  Had a grin now, I really don't see many raptors in the area.  But just as I got in the car to move on, I looked up again, to see two hawks circling the field right in front of me.  At first I thought the Shoulders had returned, but a quick look told me they were something different.  Long wings and tails, and as big or bigger than the Shoulders.  I am certain they were two immature Northern Goshawks.  I believe I saw one there once before, but a very bad look.  I have always heard that they nest in the area, and now I don't doubt it.  I had a great look as they circled right over me, staying for a minute or 2 before zooming off.  I continued past the Barlow Mill site without much action, and reached the point where I recently saw 2 Barred Owls.  I had stopped that day because I know there is a Winter Wren in the area, and I was listening for it.  Today the wren was singing his heart out!!  I stopped to listen, but after a couple of minutes he was almost drowned out by a sound like squealing brakes, seemingly right over my head.  For a minute I thought it was two trees rubbing together, but it continued when the wind stopped.  I got out of the car to walk up the road to see where it came from and suddenly a large bird flew across the road and into a tree 70 feet away.  It was a Broad-winged Hawk!  It was screaming, and another was anwering it from close by.  A brand new sound for me and one I won't forget.  I have only heard them before on recordings.  The poor wren got lost in the shuffle, but belatedly I went back to the car to get my recorder.  It was too windy to make a decent recording, and I hadn't planned on it, but I couldn't resist.  Here's the hawks:

And here is a chorus of Winter Wren and Broad-wing:

and finally, the wren, solo:

Of course, I saw a couple of the ubiquitous Turkey Vultures, and on the way back down Rt 89 to US 44 I saw one more Red-shoulder to complete the day!

If you enjoy hawks as much as I do, you know what a nice day it was!

1 comment:

forestal said...

I love that you are recording the songs. I am starting to try that with the video portion of my camera to help me learn the birdsongs.
Nice post.


About Me

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Old enough to know better (but I don't) and finally retired so I have the free time I've always wanted to pursue my interests - like Birding and Hiking!!