Cold November Birding

by John Briggs on November 23, 2008

in Blog, Site News, Weekend Birding

 It is cold outside!!

The mercury is falling and snow is flying in parts of Maine. Lakes and ponds are freezing over and I’ve seen some saltwater bays and beaches with ice forming at their edges. Just shows that winter in Maine does not begin on December 21st.

Birds are coming to the feeders all fluffed up. They are also eating enough that I can barely keep up filling the feeders. We have our supply of bird food for the winter. Peanuts, tree nuts, suet, black oil sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, thistle, cherries, raisins, etc.

It’s time to break out the heated bird baths. Mine is frozen solid, but I will get it all set before we go to Pennsylvania for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Project Feeder Watch is in full swing. We are participating again this year. I was a little late getting started, but my package arrived yesterday and I am entering data today.

 Birds coming to our feeders have been plentiful. Pine Siskins are back, with as many as 8 at a feeder at any one time. Ducks and Canada Geese are in the river/marsh daily, including Buffleheads, Common Goldeneyes, Mallards, American Black Ducks, Green-winged Teal, Blue-winged Teal and a fly-through of 8 Long-tailed Ducks (Old Squaw).

Yesterday, a pair of Adult Bald Eagles were stirring the ducks up. One landed in a spruce in our yard watching for a meal. The other made rounds between the Winnegance Bridge and the Doubling Point Lighthouse.

The Maine Birders Network has been a success! Just yesterday, a member posted beautiful pictures of a Boreal Owl that was seen in a backyard on Mount Desert Island. We now have 70 members from Maine and four other states. Members now have the option to have their own blog and photo album.

If you are a New England birder and want to interact with other birders from the region, go on over to MBN and sign up for a free membership. We would be happy to have you as part of our community.

Squirrel with it's very own feeder

Sharon and I ventured out just after sunrise this morning and drove to Popham Beach and Ft. Popham. Bird activity was light because of the wind and cold.

A second year Bald eagle was seen at Head Beach along with Buffleheads and Black Ducks. As mentioned before, most of the ponds and coves are frozen over and thereby contributed to the lack of waterfowl seen.

Just off Fort Popham, a raft of White-winged Scoters numbering 16 , two Surf Scoters, 12 Double-crested Cormorants and more than 30 Harbor Seals were feeding in the outgoing tide. See map below for exact location.

The following map is interactive. Click marker for info.


Sharon and I will be in Pennsylvania next week. We will return on December 1st hopefully with a series of bird photos from the keystone state.

Happy birding!

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