New Bird Photographed – American Oystercatcher

American Oystercatcher

American Oystercatcher

What do you know… another new bird seen for my life list in Connecticut back in May!  Again, this was at the Coastal Center at Milford Point, Connecticut.

While scouring the coastline for shorebirds, I came across my first american oystercatchers I’ve ever seen.  They kept their distance as I walked along the beach, so I stopped and waited to see if they might come back.

Sure enough, they flew in a little a closer just long enough for me to nab a couple of good photos.  Enjoy!

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New Bird Photographed – Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

Black-bellied Plover

It seemed like a near endless variety of species when I visited Connecticut this past May!  Once again, the new species was a shorebird that was mixed in with other species – the Black-bellied Plover!

The hotspot?  Still the Coastal Center at Milford Point!  While most of the birds in the mixed flock were ruddy turnstones and dunlin, there were maybe 8 or so of these plovers.

Hopefully I can plan some more Connecticut time for next year.  If I can get all this in a single day, what would a few days bring?

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New Bird Photographed – Short-billed Dowitcher

Short-billed Dowitcher

Short-billed Dowitcher

Funny story about this species… I didn’t even know I spotted it until I reviewed the pictures I took in May!

I ran into a mixed flock of shorebirds at the Coastal Center at Milford Point in Connecticut, which was prominently comprised of ruddy turnstones, dunlin, and black-bellied plovers (another new one for me, more of that later).

I took plenty of photos, but I didn’t realize that another species was mixed in until I reviewed the shots later that night.  In a few of the photos, there was a smallish sandpiper with a fairly long beak, which turned out to be a Short-billed Dowitcher!  I’ll know for next time to scan over ALL the birds in a mixed flock the next time I encounter one.

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New Bird Photographed – Common Tern

Common Tern

Common Tern

Connecticut continued to be a great place in May to look for new species I’ve never seen before.

At the Coastal Center at Milford Point, I found a mixed flock of shorebirds and terns sitting just off shore.  Many of them were new sightings for me (more on that later), including this common tern.  This tern was a little bit bigger than the least terns, plus the beak and legs were a little more red.

The tern only stayed around for a little while, and it was the only one I saw during my visit.  Sometimes though, that’s all you need!

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DONE!

imageAfter an exhaustive two day stint this past weekend totaling 20+ hours, we are officially done with what I coined the ‘nightmare project’!

The weekend work consisted of a layer of landscape fabric to be nailed to the dirt first, followed by 4 inches of paver base pitched away from the porch and down into a channel drain that I cut, 1 inch of leveling sand, 400 concrete patio pavers to be laid and/or cut to a specific pattern, and jointing sand to spread between the cracks.

Friends and family played a key role in getting this completed, and we thank you immensely for your help!  With summer nearly over, we can enjoy the final weekends with a cold one and some grilled delectables. :)

Before and After...

Before and After…

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New Bird Photographed – Semipalmated Plover

Semipalmated Plover

Semipalmated Plovers

The quest for new shorebirds continued on the Connecticut coast in May.

I don’t know if we just picked the right shore spots to go on our single day visit to Connecticut or if it is always this bountiful, but new wildlife kept popping up everywhere.

Case in point, while walking along the coast, I ran into 5 semipalmated plovers.  They were surprisingly curious of me as I sat and watched them, and as they inched closer and walked passed, I took some really nice shots.  Here’s just a few of them:

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New Bird Photographed – Least Tern

Least Terns

Least Terns

Once I saw my 200th species of bird, the flood gates just opened up.  While in Rhode Island in May, I got my first glimpse of least terns.  They were pretty far away at Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge, but I got much better looks in Connecticut, specifically at Long Beach in Stratford.

While walking the beach, a few of them would land on the shore line here and there, so I just hunkered down and waited for a chance.  My patience was rewarded too, with one of the terns landing very close while I was sitting on the sand:

Least Tern

Least Tern

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