Thursday, September 1, 2011

Birding Break & The Summer Experience

  Summer is not my favorite season but there are things that I look forward to this time of year. Instead of  sitting around and waiting for summer to be over I decided to look for some of the best of what summer has to offer. I don't enjoy birding much in the heat and humidity so I decided to leave the binoculars behind for a couple of weeks. You could say I've been taking a birding break but  binoculars aren't required to see birds. 


 One hot morning I climbed to the traprock ridge overlooking Black Pond in Meriden. There is trail with a gradual incline which gets you to the ridge in about 15 minutes. There was a cool breeze at the top and the views are great! Although I wasn't going out of my way to look for birds I did see Osprey, Turkey Vultures, Double-crested Cormorants, Mute Swans, and Great Blue Herons in the pond and surrounding marsh.
One Sunday morning  I was on my way to Rose's Berry Farm in Glastonbury when a flash of white  caught my eye. It was a Great Egret perched high in a tree at the Portland Fairgrounds.
  We are fortunate to have several fruit orchards and farm stands near Portland. Rose's Berry Farm in Glastonbury offers breakfasts on Sundays featuring recipes containing whichever fruit is in season at the time. I had french toast topped with homemade blueberry sauce. It was so good that I considered ordering a second helping. It's no wonder they hire a falconer every year. He uses a dozen falcons to chase birds away from the berries. They initially tried firing cannons to scare the birds off but the neighbors didn't particularly care for that method.
 After breakfast I took a walk along a dirt road that passes by the fields. There were several  Field Sparrows that would land on the sprinklers and sing.
       Here is a short clip of one of the Field Sparrows singing.
    I enjoy attending some of the free outdoor concerts and events that take place during the summer. Somehow the Mallards found their way into this photo which was taken at the Dragon Boat Festival in Hartford.
  This is a video of  a dragon boat race in progress.
   This gull found its catch of the day on the Mystic River in front of a restaurant. I wonder if it saw the all you can eat sign?
My wife and I spent a couple of relaxing days at the Steamboat Inn at Mystic. We enjoy looking out the window as boats pass by. The name of this yacht is Serque

Other than the hurricane we've had nice summer and fall will soon be here.

click to play video of Mystic River Bridge being raised

6 comments:

Dostoy said...

Thanks for this post. All of your experiences sound amazing. And the photography is stunning!

Nan said...

Well, it sounds to me like you had a wonderful summer! I'm not a fan of the season either - too hot, too buggy. I love the sparrow on the sprinkler. Such a wonderful little bird, the sparrow. I love the one you see in towns. We've always called them 'city sparrows' but they probably have a real name. :<) The breakfast place sounds great.

dAwN said...

Fun! You dont need bins to see birds..and I see you are always on the lookout for them! Glad you enjoyed your stay in Mystic..you stayed at a great place. Now that summer is over and its getting cooler..time to dust off those bins. Hope to see you at one of the BwBTC outings!

Chris said...

Excellent post Larry... Are you sure, you do not need binoculars to see birds ;-) Here we are getting flocks of ready to fly away birds ;-)

Kelly said...

...what a view in the first shot!! It's gorgeous. I liked hearing the sweet call of the Field Sparrow too. They are such pretty birds. I love the color of their bills and their eyes.

Larry said...

Dostoy-thanks!
Nan-Fall is coming-much better season but too short.

Chris-I can see them but I may not be able to identify them!

Kelly-Yeah-thanks-nice spot from the top of that ridge.Field Sparrows are kind of an overlooked species but I like them too.