2 November 2019
I went out on an excursion run by Mass Audubon to see ducks before they migrate south; we visited Pontoosuc Lake and Onota Lake. We saw many different types, including common and hooded mergansers, black scoters (a rarity around here), wood ducks, ring-necked ducks (and ring-billed gulls), mallards (of course), Canada geese, a loon, a great blue heron, and a juvenile and an adult bald eagle. Unfortunately, the range was extreme for my gear, so the pictures aren't great.
I saw the dragonfly myself later, at Parson's Marsh.
3 November 2019
Today's birds were at much closer range than yesterday's, so I got some nice shots of a great blue heron trying to feed, and of a red-bellied woodpecker high atop a tree. (I couldn't tell if the heron got anything but vegetation…)
10 November 2019
Here are the last two pictures from my trip last weekend to the Berkshires.
10 November 2019
I went on an evening bird walk with Birding Bob in search of eastern screech-owls in Inwood Hill Park. At first, it was quite frustrating; we heard some but couldn't find any. Then, as we were about to head out of the park, one flew overhead and we spotted it.
13 November 2019
Here are some penguin pictues I took at various points along the Antarctic Peninsula, about 5 years ago.
19 November 2019
I was delighted to see and photograph this great horned owl in the Loch area of Central Park the other day.
23 November 2019
I had a great day, today, wandering around Central Park taking pictures. I decided to start at the Ramble and work my way north, stopping at the Turtle Pond to see the great blue heron. By the time I got to the Loch, it was pretty late and I was rather tired, so I didn't look as hard as I might there, but I had fun seeing lots of different kinds of ducks in the Reservoir and the Harlem Meer.
One of the nice things about birding is the chance to talk to other birders about what's around, and where—and I'm normally pretty introverted. I wouldn't have seen those ruddy ducks had I not noticed another person photographing them; we had a nice chat afterwards.
25 November 2019
I brought my camera to my office today, hoping to spot the peregrine falcons that live at Riverside Church. I didn't see them, so I wandered into Riverside Park. Heading south, I went on the Forever Wild trail, but only saw a few bluejays (and my pictures of them aren't very good). Heading back north on the path that's right next to the street, though, I flushed a red-tailed hawk from the strip of dirt and vegetation between the path and the retaining wall that abuts Riverside Drive. The hawk flew about a block north, and perched in a tree just south of W. 119th St., carrying a rat. I took some pictures as I approached it (the first photo), and though it looked around whenever it heard the camera—this camera has a very loud shutter—it kept on about its business. I was able to pass it without disturbing it, and circled back on the sidewalk where I had a great view and better light, and it either didn't notice or didn't care when I took many more photos (the last four pictures).
28 November 2019
In honor of American Thanksgiving, here are some wild turkeys. The first is a scan of a print from 1987, when I lived in suburban New Jersey; the bird just landed in my backyard. The third was taken with my phone through a car window, but hey, I had to stop anyway to let them cross the road.
And the last? Well, it's not a turkey, but it is a turkey vulture…
28 November 2019
Here's a juvenile red-headed woodpecker in the North Meadow of Central Park. It appeared to be boring a hole in the tree; in the second picture, you can see its body halfway in. But it wasn't deep enough, so it backed out and kept drilling.
29 November 2019
Before heading out to spend the holiday with family, I went for a walk through Morningside Park and Central Park. Apart from the juvenile red-headed woodpecker I blogged about yesterday, I saw plenty of other birds worth photographing, including two red-bellied woodpeckers and a northern mockingbird that was busy driving off two bluejays.
30 November 2019
I decided to take a short walk through Morningside Park today, since given the forecast I'm not going to get out tomorrow or Monday (though I may try for some snow pictures Monday evening…). Lots of birds, and a squirrel and a cat that were looking exceptionally picturesque.