christmas bird counts

george steele

Does anyone have a list of dates for Christmas Bird Counts?  They'll be here before you know it. Thanks.


eBird Report - Laughing Gull Saratoga Lake, Oct 30, 2017

Ronald Harrower

Saratoga Lake, Saratoga, New York, US
Oct 30, 2017 10:45 AM - 11:05 AM
Protocol: Stationary
Comments: After seeing Lindsey's and Tom's posts about the Laughing Gulls, I went to Brown's Beach to see what I could find. I had just been to eye doctor for full eval including dilation drops, so vision was weird. Fortunately camera isn't have any drops and confirmed what I saw in binoculars.
6 species

Canada Goose 17
Mallard 21
Great Blue Heron 1 Standing on dock
Laughing Gull 1 Immature bird with arcs under and over eyes and curved bill smaller than nearby Ring-biled Gulls
Ring-billed Gull 30
Herring Gull 2

View this checklist online at

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (

Laughing Gulls, Saratoga Lake- 10/30


Thanks to the heads-up from Lindsey, I scanned the docks at Brown’s Beach and found not only a juvenile, but also an adult Laughing Gull resting there. All the gulls have since begun their foraging, but periodically they return to the docks to rest, seeming to favor the ones just to the left of the beach. Good luck if you go, and big congratulations to Lindsey for another good find!

Tom Williams 

Brown's Beach 10/30

Lindsey Duval <lindsey.duval@...>

This morning I crammed in a tiny bit of birding between the late sunrise and my job and found that the storm system had a LOT (200+) of Ring-billed Gulls on the move at the beach. Not much else, the typical Mallards and Canada Geese there. I scanned the docks which were, of course, full of Ring-billed Gulls and spotted a tiny, dark gull which turns out is a juvenile LAUGHING GULL (thanks Rich and Zach for ID!). If you go, make sure it's not completely eclipsed behind a Ring-billed Gull's body. 

- Lindsey D. 

Long-tailed Ducks on the Battenkill in Greenwich

Scott Varney

Observed 6 Long-tailed Ducks on the Battenkill River near the Greenwich Town Beach on Route 29 today at 1:00 pm. A Kingfisher was also visible on the telephone lines directly in front. This section has become quite the birding hotspot, but parking is near impossible on this section of 29. Best parking is at the pulloff for the town beach and then hiking West on 29 back towards the village. (Please be mindful of 55 MPH traffic) Also stopped to view a Bald Eagle feeding on roadkill in the field adjacent and East of the Greenery (A plant nursery).

Scott Varney
Salem, NY

Renseaerville State Forest yesterday - red crossbills


Denise, Gregg, Cathy, and birded the area from Scutt Rd up CCC rd to the clearing yesterday morning, bumping into several other birders. We had a conservatively estimated 35 Red Crossbills and at least one Purple Finch, along with Fox Sparrow and numerous white-throats and juncos. A flyby Northern Goshawk provided some brief excitement as well. Details and a couple of documentation-quality photos of the crossbills are in the ebird checklist, below. 

Denise and I also had a Ruffed Grouse in the road along CR 153 between Renselaerville and the CCC Rd turnoff.

Waterfowl and such 10/28

Lindsey Duval <lindsey.duval@...>

This morning I joined the Red crossbill festivities at Rensselaerville State Forest and then wandered off. Some of you knew that I was off to finally get some species for myself in Montgomery County. I randomly found a Cooper's Hawk as my first. I stopped at the Auriesville Pilgrimage Lunch Area in/by Amsterdam and was psyched to find three really close juvenile White-winged Scoters. The only other species of any note there was Common Merganser, with 14 enjoying the sun. I also visited Mosher Marsh northeast of Amsterdam and that was terrible. 

I later joined Stacey and Gary on their way up north and am very grateful that they took me around Saratoga Lake in a windstorm as I wouldn't have seen what we did without a scope. We found scattered American Coots, a few Buffleheads, a raft of 23 Black Scoters, Red-breasted Mergansers were still present, a Common Loon, 6 or 7 White-winged Scoters, and then closer to sunset 6 Brant joined us at Brown's Beach. The Brant magically disappeared shortly before Susan Beaudoin came to see them, which I found rude.

- Lindsey D.

Turkey vultures roost Ravena

Richard Guthrie

Turkey Vultures coming to roost are so graceful as they glide in silently. Thirty Turkey Vultures and 4 Black Vultures. Hope Plaza Rt 9-W Ravena. 4:30 - 4:45 PM.

Albany County 10/28

zach schwartz-weinstein

I birded several spots around Albany County with Stacy robinson and Gary Chapin this morning.  We started at rensselaerville State Forest, where we had a number of Red Crossbills and Pine Siskins, as well as the best look at a Northern Goshawk i’ve ever had.  At The Huyck Preserve, we had two Wilson’s Snipe, a flotilla of Green-Winged Teal, a Bufflehead, and a Ring-necked Duck.

At Basic Creek reservoir, we had four pectoral sandpipers, a horned grebe, many Common and Hooded mergansers, Ruddy Ducks, Ri g-Necked Ducks, Teal, and Americans wigeons.  At Alcove Reservoir, two black scoters, a common loon, and the usual ravens, and at Stanton Pond, in addition to the usual assortment of dabbling ducks, we had a juvenile Northern Harrier.
Zach Schwartz-Weinstein
203 500 7774

Re: Charles Carralt & HMBC CBC


Nice memory, Rich.  Thanks for sharing it; I had never heard about this.


Mona Bearor

South Glens Falls




From: hmbirds@... [mailto:hmbirds@...] On Behalf Of Richard Guthrie richardpguthrie@... [hmbirds]
Sent: Friday, October 27, 2017 8:06 PM
To: hmbirds@...
Subject: [HMBirds] Charles Carralt & HMBC CBC


I caught a snippet of a remembrance of the old CBS TV show "On the road with Charles Carralt. They came up this way to catch us doing the Christmas Bird Count one year. It was a very cold December day (16 deg. below zero) with a foot or more of snow on the ground...But we had a pretty good count that day.



Richard Guthrie


Charles Carralt & HMBC CBC

Richard Guthrie

I caught a snippet of a remembrance of the old CBS TV show "On the road with Charles Carralt. They came up this way to catch us doing the Christmas Bird Count one year. It was a very cold December day (16 deg. below zero) with a foot or more of snow on the ground...But we had a pretty good count that day.

Richard Guthrie

Cave Swallow - a possibility

Richard Guthrie

Bill Purcell sends a very timely reminder to the folks up along Lake Ontario that the upcoming weather through the next week has the potential to bring CAVE SWALLOWS into the area. 

The same holds true for the Hudson-Mohawk and mid-Hudson Regions. Although the likelihood is slimmer than along the Great Lakes or shores of Connecticut or Long Island.

Watch for them along the Hudson and larger water bodies such as Ashokan and Tomhannock Reservoirs.

Typically, they like to find bridges or porch overhangs to roost for the night. 

Suspect Cave Swallows were seen around Lighthouse Park on the Hudson River in Saratoga County and swirling around the girders of the Rip-Van Winkle Bridge. In neither instance, were they confirmed - but the suspicion remains...

Cave Swallows come to us from either the southwest or southeast (two different populations with subtle differences in markings). They sometimes associate with late flocks of Tree Swallows, but not always. Their overnight roosting preferences are different. 

Good Luck and get pictures !

eBird it.

Rich Guthrie

Richard Guthrie

Saratoga Lake waterfowl

Naomi Lloyd

The lake was still enough to allow decent viewing, but the variety wasn't great. One raft visible from St Isaac's Church was about 120 scoters, a few each of White-winged and (male) Surf, many (male) Black and at least as many female types too far out to distinguish - over 100 altogether. The only other birds of note were four Brant, seen from the South Shore Marina parking lot. Only grebe was Pied-billed.

Naomi Lloyd
West Sand Lake

Friday waterfowl

John Kent

I took the day off and checked some waterfowl spots today.

At Basic Creek Reservoir in Westerlo - typical variety and numbers of ducks, as well as a Pied-billed Grebe and three American Coots. List is at

From the Alcove Reservoir spillway, a tight raft of about 65 Black Scoters was the highlight. Also seven Surf Scoters, a Horned Grebe, a few American Coots and American Wigeon, and a Common Loon. Most of the birds are quite distant, and would not be identifiable without a scope.

At Stanton Pond in Coeymans the waterfowl assortment was typical:

After lunch I checked the Green Island/Cohoes area, as well as the trail from under the Twin Bridges across the outlet of Wager's Pond to Clute's Drydock. All I found were the three common gull species, Killdeer, Great Blue Herons, and ten Double-crested Cormorants at Crescent Power Plant.

There were Golden-crowned Kinglets in several locations, and one Ruby-crowned at Basic Creek.

John Kent

Manning and Riley Coves

Ronald Harrower

Made a whistle stop by Manning and Riley Coves “on the way” to an appointment. I appreciated Susan’s heads up yesterday. Straight out towards Snake Hill were 12 White-winged Scoters. To the right 100 feet were 3 Red-necked Grebes, 3 Black Scoters and one Surf Scoter. Around the bend at Riley Cove were 3 Buffleheads and two Carolina Wrens having a sing off.
Warrants further inquiry when more time is at hand.
Ron Harrower

Bog Meadow - Fox Sparrow

Lindsey Duval <lindsey.duval@...>

This morning I took a brief ramble along Bog Meadow Brook Trail and it was mostly business as usual (lots of blackbirds, American Robins, and White-throated Sparrows moving through along with a few Purple Finches), but had a surprise flyover of a calling GREATER YELLOWLEGS and found my first-of-season FOX SPARROW in the little dip by the beaver-owned bridge. 

Lindsey D.

October 25 Birdline


Birdline summary for week ending October 25:

20 reports; 74 species reported


Best of the week:

CACKLING GOOSE: Stillwater 10/19

GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE: Schuylerville 10/19-10/22

LONG-TAILED DUCK: Saratoga Lake 10/20 (6), 10/21 (5)

RED-BREASTED MERGANSER: Saratoga Lake 10/20 (4), 10/21 (3)

BONAPARTES GULL: Alcove Reservoir 10/23 (2)

LINCOLNS SPARROW: Rensselaerville SF 10/19

RUSTY BLACKBIRD: Bog Meadow 10/23 (3)

RED CROSSBILL: Rensselaerville SF 10/19 (3), 10/23 (25)


Other notables:

Northern Shoveler: Alcove Reservoir 10/19; Stanton Pond 10/20

Northern Pintail: Basic Creek 10/20; Stanton Pond 10/20

Canvasback: Saratoga Lake 10/20

Greater Scaup: Loughberry Lake 10/23 (8)

Lesser Scaup: Loughberry Lake 10/23 (16)

Surf Scoter: Saratoga Lake 10/25

White-winged Scoter: Saratoga Lake 10/21 (11), 10/25 (4)

Black Scoter: Saratoga Lake 10/25

Ruddy Duck: Basic Creek 10/20 (200)

Common Loon: Saratoga Lake 10/21 (10); Alcove Reservoir 10/23

Pied-billed Grebe: Basic Creek 10/20; Nassau Lake 10/23

Horned Grebe: Saratoga Lake 10/25

American Coot: Basic Creek 10/20; Saratoga Lake 10/25

Greater Yellowlegs: Basic Creek 10/20

Ruby-throated Hummingbird: New Baltimore 10/25

Carolina Wren: Loughberry Lake 10/23 (2)

Winter Wren: Rensselaerville SF 10/19

American Pipit: Saratoga 10/22 (30)

Purple Finch: Rensselaerville SF 10/19

Pine Siskin: Rensselaerville SF 10/19


Thanks to Susan Beaudoin (Saratoga Lake), Alan French (Glenville), Rich Guthrie (New Baltimore), Ron Harrower (Saratoga, Saratoga Lake, Schuylerville, Loughberry Lake, Bog Meadow), John Hershey (Rensselaerville SF, Saratoga Lake), John Kent (Basic Creek, Stanton Pond), Heidi Klinowski (Troy), Barb Putnam (Schuylerville, Stillwater), Gregg Recer (Schuylerville), Zach Schwartz-Weinstein (Alcove Reservoir, Rensselaerville SF) and Scott Varney (Bog Meadow)

Ruby-throated Hummingbird - New Baltimore

Richard Guthrie

An adult male Ruby-throated Hummingbird visited my backyard feeders early this morning (Oct. 25th). He stayed for a while, visiting one or the other feeder but has not been seen after 9 o'clock.

Richard Guthrie

Rileys Cove


Tom and I found Terry H and Ruth B at Rileys Cove early this afternoon. We had several good birds. At least four white-winged scoters, a coot, a long-tailed duck, two American wigeons and four loons in a row. Terry found a grebe in the distance looking south which we assumed would be a horned. I saw one surf and one black scoter that was not seen by the rest of the group. Calm conditions and good lighting made for good sightings. At Browns Beach another horned grebe was visible to the south diving in and out amongst a flock of Canada geese.
Susan Beaudoin

eBird Report - Bog Meadow Brook Nature Trail, Oct 23, 2017

Ronald Harrower

Bog Meadow Brook Nature Trail, Saratoga, New York, US
Oct 23, 2017 9:53 AM - 11:12 AM
Protocol: Traveling
1.5 mile(s)
Comments: After experiencing so many small flocks of migrants mixed in with locals, I saw and heard practically none of small birds that have made up the numbers in my recent sightings at BMBNT. I did get some practice with mixed blackbirds and had a great time watching a pair of Kingfishers rattle all around the pond.
21 species (+1 other taxa)

Canada Goose 25 Flock flew by
American Wigeon 3
Mallard (Northern) 4
American Black Duck 2
Turkey Vulture 2
Mourning Dove 2
Belted Kingfisher 2
Downy Woodpecker 3
Northern Flicker 2
Pileated Woodpecker 1
Blue Jay 7
American Crow 3
Marsh Wren 2
Eastern Bluebird 1
American Robin 2
European Starling 4
Red-winged Blackbird 8
Brown-headed Cowbird 1
Rusty Blackbird 3 3 Rusty Blackbirds in with the others
Common Grackle 2
blackbird sp. 7
American Goldfinch 4

View this checklist online at

This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (

3641 - 3660 of 27404