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FW: [nysbirds-l] 2015 Rusty Blackbird Spring Migration Blitz

Will Raup
 

(apologies to those who get this multiple times!)

Dear New York Birders,

With less than one month until kickoff we wanted to welcome everyone back to the Rusty Blackbird Spring Migration Blitz. We have been gearing up and planning for the 2015 season, the second year of a 3-year study headed up by the International Rusty Blackbird Working Group (IRBWG). Through a partnership with eBird, the Working Group seeks to collect as much data and information as possible in an effort to develop conservation strategies and management programs aimed at reversing the trend in the dramatic population decline of Rusty Blackbirds. Based on available data we know that the Rusty Blackbird’s population has declined at an alarming 85-99% in the past 40 years. To learn more about the Working Group and it’s purpose please check out this link: http://rustyblackbird.org/working-group/purpose/

So once again we are seeking your help! First, a huge thanks to all of last years participants who helped exceed the programs expectations. New York observers submitted 1696 checklists, a 46% increase in the number of checklists containing Rusty Blackbird sightings since 2013 (pre-blitz era). 

The target blitz period for New York State is March 1 - April 31. During this time period we are encouraging birders to head out and search for Rusty Blackbirds and to submit their data through eBird using the “Rusty Blackbird Spring Migration Blitz” protocol. This drop down will be available in eBird on March 1st and should be used whenever you are searching for Rusty Blackbirds, even if you don’t find any. Researchers are interested in both presence and absence of the species. Based on last years data, the researchers at IRBWG have developed an Areas of Interest Map. This map contains priority locations that should be surveyed in addition to your search efforts. We encourage everyone to check out this map and be sure to visit these sites during the blitz window: http://rustyblackbird.org/outreach/migration-blitz/2015-areas-of-interest/

There are often many excellent questions raised by blitz participants and as a result a Frequently Asked Questions page was developed on the rustyblackbird.org website: http://rustyblackbird.org/outreach/migration-blitz/2015-areas-of-interest/areas-of-interest-frequently-asked-questions/

Also, social media users should follow the blitz Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/rustyblackbirdspringblitz 

rustyblackbird.org contains a tremendous amount of information but we understand that there are always going to be questions. For this reason New York State has three Blitz Coordinators that are available to help answer questions and to get interested folks started on the blitz. Again, we encourage folks to check out the website but please do not hesitate to contact any of the coordinators listed below. Thank you again for helping to make the blitz successful and we look forward to another great season!!

Best,

Derek Rogers (drogers0031@...) - Long Island Blitz Coorindator
Mike Shanley (falecore@...) - NYC/Staten Island Blitz Coordinator
Will Raup (hoaryredpoll@...) - Upstate NY Blitz Coordinator


Brown-headed Cowbird

ConserveBirds
 

I was surprised to see a male Brown-headed Cowbird on the Towpath Rd. this morning.  The temperature was -30F.  It was hanging out with doves in a shrub at a residence that maintains feeders.

Mona Bearor

South Glens Falls


Re: Bald Eagle - City of Albany

Tom Lake
 

Hi Brian -
Our Bald Eagles have come back to the Northeast full tilt.
 
From 1897 until 1997, due to bounties, poisoning, habitat loss, and DDT, the Hudson Valley did not produce a single baby Bald Eagle (100 years).
 
After some resettling of baby Bald Eagles from the upper Midwest and Alaska in the 1980s, we had our first successful "hatch" in Greene County in 1997 (that nest had three nestlings the following year!).
 
Now, 18 years later, we estimate two dozen active eagle nests in the watershed (a very conservative number). In winter (like right now) there is another estimated 200-250 wintering eagles from Canada and points to the Northeast along the estuary. 
 
Their year-around population has reached a point where you should not be surprised to see one almost anywhere at almost anytime.    
Tom Lake
 
 
 

-----Original Message-----
From: Brian Smith brijsmith@... [hmbirds]
To: HM Birds Hmbirds@Yahoogroups
Sent: Mon, Feb 2, 2015 12:24 am
Subject: [HMBirds] Bald Eagle - City of Albany

 
Hi,

Driving down 90 in between exits 4 and 5 at 9:05 on Saturday morning. I saw a bald eagle fly over 90, pretty low, probably in hunt mode. It might have been looking to take ducks from the pond that's on the northbound side before you get to Everett Road.

If I were a wintering bald eagle, I would hunt there too. There's almost always mallards or black duck there and sometimes gulls and others there.

So great to see them coming back. I wonder how much they will come back, how common they'll become. I've already heard there are issues with them taking endangered birds like puffins on the Maine and Canada NB coastline. I wonder how they'll ultimately affect duck populations.  It'll be interesting to watch.

Cheers!

Brian Smith
Averill Park, NY


HMBC program tonight at Colonie library CANCELED due to the snowstorm

scottjstoner
 

I am canceling the program on passenger pigeons scheduled for tonight Monday Feb 2. It will be rescheduled for a later date. Scott Stoner, Program Chair,  Hudson-Mohawk Bird Club

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID


Stuyvesant- Lapland Longspur, Merlin

kernscot
 

Nancy Kern

To: kernscot@...
Town of Stuyvesant, Columbia, US-NY
Feb 1, 2015 3:10 PM - 4:50 PM
Protocol: Traveling
19.0 mile(s)
Comments: Sunny, breezy, clear, 21 F. Spent most of my time looking at flocks of 100's of Horned Larks for Lapland Longspurs. Found 5 in one flock after a long search and tired eyes.
17 species

Canada Goose 900 flew down on large cornfields in late afternoon.
Mallard 40 feeding on cornfields with C. Geese
Bald Eagle 1 flyover
Red-tailed Hawk 1
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) 30
Mourning Dove 6
Merlin 1 perched on top of pole along the road
American Crow 300
Horned Lark 600 flocks of 50 to 200 on manured field and corn stubble fields on several very large farms along Rt.21 and Eichybush Road.
Eastern Bluebird 1
European Starling 50
Lapland Longspur 5
Snow Bunting 14
American Tree Sparrow 10
Savannah Sparrow 2
Dark-eyed Junco 20
Northern Cardinal 2

View this checklist online at http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S21642875

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (http://ebird.org)



Bald Eagle - City of Albany

Brian Smith <brijsmith@...>
 

Hi,

Driving down 90 in between exits 4 and 5 at 9:05 on Saturday morning. I saw a bald eagle fly over 90, pretty low, probably in hunt mode. It might have been looking to take ducks from the pond that's on the northbound side before you get to Everett Road.

If I were a wintering bald eagle, I would hunt there too. There's almost always mallards or black duck there and sometimes gulls and others there.

So great to see them coming back. I wonder how much they will come back, how common they'll become. I've already heard there are issues with them taking endangered birds like puffins on the Maine and Canada NB coastline. I wonder how they'll ultimately affect duck populations.  It'll be interesting to watch.

Cheers!

Brian Smith
Averill Park, NY


Re: Raven courtship flights?

Richard Guthrie
 

Lucky you. 

That's wonderful behavior to witness. 

Yes, it is likely courtship. Ravens do nest very early so this pair is going through the preliminaries. 

Rich Guthrie
New Baltimore

On Sun, Feb 1, 2015 at 7:17 PM, 'Mona Bearor' conservebirds@... [hmbirds] <hmbirds-noreply@...> wrote:
 

This afternoon in Riparius (RT8 between Friend's Lake and Wevertown) I observed a pair of Common Ravens in what appeared to be courtship flight.  They were flying very close together, touching at times, sometimes soaring high, then kind of tumbling down and out of sight behind trees.

 

Is it early to be seeing that behavior in this species?

 

Mona Bearor

South Glens Falls




--
Richard Guthrie


Raven courtship flights?

ConserveBirds
 

This afternoon in Riparius (RT8 between Friend's Lake and Wevertown) I observed a pair of Common Ravens in what appeared to be courtship flight.  They were flying very close together, touching at times, sometimes soaring high, then kind of tumbling down and out of sight behind trees.

 

Is it early to be seeing that behavior in this species?

 

Mona Bearor

South Glens Falls


CWrens, BBs & more

Heidi Klinowski <woodthrush46@...>
 

In my Troy yard on Fri, Sat & Sunday:

5 E. Bluebirds (3 male 2 fem)
1 Northern Mockingbird
2 Carolina Wrens
5 or 6 Common Redpolls (Finally!)
WhBrstd Nuthatch
Hairy Wdpkr
Downy Wdpkr
Red-Bellied Wdpkr
BC Chickadee
T. Titmouse
White-Throated Sparrow
House Sprw
House Finch
Cardinal
Starling
And a flyover of about 1000 Am. Crows at sunset


Refilling feeders and adding water to heated bd bath 2-3x a day!

Heidi in Troy


Painted Bunting RFI

Will Yandik
 

Hi All: Would any of you put me in touch with the birder/s who have details about the Painted Bunting observed in Rotterdam, Nov. 2014? I understand that it's been photographed? Anyone know where that pic might be?

I'm compiling the fall Kingbird report and would like to include a write-up about it.

Cheers, Will Yandik


I know when it's really cold out

Marne Onderdonk
 

Because since early this morning I've had a *chirpy* red-bellied woodpecker frequently visiting the peanut feeder in my yard. He or she makes an appearance when temps are low (or so it seems)--

No redpolls or pine siskins but the Usual Suspects and still very happy to have them.

Happy birding--stay warm!

Marne in Saratoga Springs


Stuyvesant- Snow Buntings, Horned Larks, Savannah Sparrows

kernscot
 

Nancy Kern

Town of Stuyvesant, Columbia, US-NY
Jan 30, 2015 2:30 PM - 3:00 PM
Protocol: Traveling
6.0 mile(s)
Comments: Light, falling,drifting snow, overcast, windy, ground covered with 6" snow
11 species

Canada Goose 800 flying over harvested corn fields
Red-tailed Hawk 2
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) 20 perched on silos
American Crow 300 flying, perched in trees around corn fields
Horned Lark 50
Snow Bunting 8
American Tree Sparrow 11
Savannah Sparrow 4
Song Sparrow 2
White-throated Sparrow 2
Dark-eyed Junco 15

View this checklist online at http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S21606466

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (http://ebird.org)



Austerlitz- Common Raven

kernscot
 

Nancy Kern



Austerlitz, Columbia, US-NY
Jan 30, 2015 8:30 AM - 11:15 AM
Protocol: Stationary
Comments: Cold, overcast, at times heavy snow falling, ground covered with 10" or more drifting snow
15 species

Red-tailed Hawk 1
Mourning Dove 3
Red-bellied Woodpecker 2
Downy Woodpecker 2
Hairy Woodpecker 1
Blue Jay 6
American Crow 4
Common Raven 2
Black-capped Chickadee 6
Tufted Titmouse 2
White-breasted Nuthatch 2
American Tree Sparrow 3
Dark-eyed Junco 4
Northern Cardinal 3
American Goldfinch 5

View this checklist online at http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S21606541

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (http://ebird.org)



Schodack- Merlin

kernscot
 

Nancy Kern



Schodack, NY, Eleanor Dr., Rensselaer, US-NY
Jan 30, 2015 3:10 PM - 3:25 PM
Protocol: Traveling
5.0 mile(s)
Comments: Windy, drifting snow, waterfowl all packed into and around a farm pond
11 species

Canada Goose 450
American Black Duck 2
Mallard 130
Red-tailed Hawk (Eastern) 2
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) 15
Merlin 1 on a tree limb along the road and a field eating something
American Crow 200
Horned Lark 20
American Tree Sparrow 8
Savannah Sparrow 6
Dark-eyed Junco 10

View this checklist online at http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S21606651

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (http://ebird.org)



Re: Robin in Clifton Park - A Sign of Spring?

Ron
 

I saw about 50 Robins last Sunday in the open field at the corner of 32 and Waldenmaier Road in Feura Bush.


On Jan 30, 2015, at 6:18 PM, Sue Klein sk_21_00@... [hmbirds] <hmbirds-noreply@...> wrote:

 

At about 11:00 this morning, while moderately heavy, wet snow was falling, we observed a single Robin in a tree just outside the Shenendahowa Adult Community Center.

- Sue Klein


snow buntings at Crossings at Colonie

roundywaves35@...
 

We saw them Thursday afternoon.  Sorry this is late, I have been busy.  

Saw them at the sledding hill near the parking area at the end of Metro Park Rd.  

I saw them first as they were flying away.  Then as we were leaving, they landed right where we had been sledding.


Jeanette Roundy


Robin in Clifton Park - A Sign of Spring?

Sue Klein
 

At about 11:00 this morning, while moderately heavy, wet snow was falling, we observed a single Robin in a tree just outside the Shenendahowa Adult Community Center.

- Sue Klein


Carolina wren

K O
 

Just had a Carolina wren at the feeder, haven't seen one around since late fall.


Kristin

Loundonville


Black Vultures - New Scotland

Alan Mapes
 

About 1:00 today there were 6 BLVU's circling near the intersection of Rt. 85 and Rt. 85A. I had three of them along Krumkill Road last week.

A group of Wild Turkey were in a cornfield at Indian Ladder Farm this morning, along the road from Voorheesville to Altamont. Yesterday, we had a group of them in a hay field along Rt. 32 near Four Bush.

Alan Mapes


Re: Need some help with Gull ID

Richard Guthrie
 

The gull on the right in the first photo is an immature Great Black-backed Gull. The smaller gull is the Herring Gull.

The gull in the second photo is indeed an immature Great Black-backed Gull.

Nice photos.

Rich Guthrie


On Fri, Jan 30, 2015 at 2:42 PM, kharper@... [hmbirds] <hmbirds-noreply@...> wrote:
 

Took these shots at end of Flight Lock Road.

In the first pic with two gulls, I think the one on the right is a Herring Gull and the one on left was quite a bit smaller

http://www.kenharperphotos.com/Gulls/Herring-Gull/i-55BgTB7/0/L/herringgulljuvi8244-L.jpg

In the second photo I think I have a immature Great Black-backed Gull; but would love some help to know for sure.

http://www.kenharperphotos.com/Gulls/Great-Blackbacked-Full/i-h2sSC8S/0/L/gbbgull1stwinterr8264waterford12-27-14-L.jpg

Thanks in advance for any ID help anyone can give.

Ken Harper

 

 




--
Richard Guthrie

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