Waterfowl

adult Snow Goose on the Neversink River at Woodbourne 12/14/12

adult Snow Goose on the Neversink River at Woodbourne 12/14/12

The Mergansers were covering such a large area I could only get photos of part of the huge flock

The Mergansers were covering such a large area I could only get photos of part of the huge flock

This morning I covered several locations where waterfowl have been concentrating as the smaller lakes freeze over. At Kiamesha Lake I found over 400 Common Mergansers. It was difficult to count as they would loaf for a short time then all dive. A good estimate would be about 430 all together. There were also 8 Ruddy Ducks, 1 Lesser Scaup, 10 Hooded Mergansers, Canada Geese and Mallards, 15 gulls (herring and ring-billed) and an adult pair of Bald Eagles. I checked out some additional spots which were not productive, ending up in Woodbourne at the Cornfields and Park. There were at least 1,000 geese, 400 – 500 ducks and some passerines. The highlight was an adult SNOW GOOSE. There were also at least three hybrid geese present (Canada x barnyard goose). If ever there was a spot to find a rare goose, this would be it. While the geese were all in the corn fields, the rolling hills prevented good views of many of the birds. When all the birds flew to the river at the park, they covered at least a quarter of a mile of the river there. The birds were packed so deeply it wasn’t possible to ID every bird. There were also so many ducks that an exact count wasn’t possible, but 500 is not out of the question. I only saw Mallards and Black Ducks, but the ducks were so densely packed as well that anything could have been in with them. Also at the park was a Bald Eagle, Northern Mockingbird, Belted Kingfisher, Carolina Wren, Blue Birds and Ring-billed Gulls. It was a fun morning, sifting through the birds.

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