Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Two days, two ducks

The past two days have been filled with non-Big Year responsibilties, so the birding has been limited.  Despite the limitations on my time I have been able to pick up two year birds.  Yesterday morning, after picking up breakfast I stopped at the cemetery for a quick check of the ponds.  Luckily, I came up on Parallel Pond a beautiful drake wood duck flushed up from the edge and flew across the pond.  After enjoying this wonderful creature, it was time to head home to take care of some reading.

Today was such a wonderful late winter day that I had to stop on at Great Kills on the way home from work.  Oh, before I go on... last Tuesday, Tom St. Pierre and I took a trip out to Gilgo Beach to successfully chase the gyrfalcon that's been hanging around the marshes.  While watching the falcon another Tom from Staten Island showed up and he was sporting a Nikon ProStaff 82mm spotting scope.  I've been looking around for a good mid-priced scope but haven't been pleased with any of the scopes I've been running into.  Well, after look through Tom's scope, I was sold on this one!  Within three hours of returning home, I order my own Nikon ProStaff 82mm from Amazon and it arrived on Friday afternoon.

So, back to today... using my new scope, I started to scan the bay but was only seeing distance common goldeneye, bufflehead and red-breasted merganser.  Turning the scope to the closer ducks I came upon a hen black scoter! Check!   This might be the same bird that's been seen on and off at Great Kills since mid-January, but either way, it's a year-bird!  

With the addition of these two ducks my big-year list stands at 106. Hopefully, with migration starting up the list will start growing in leaps and bounds!

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