Great day of birding in Sullivan County!

Three of the six Evening Grosbeaks at Sue Rayano's feeders, including the only male present.

Three of the six Evening Grosbeaks at Sue Rayano’s feeders, including the only male present.


This morning I headed out to make my rounds of the northeastern portion of the county. You never know when things will click and you’ll have a great day. Today was one of those days. There seemed to be good birds at every stop. I birded the Neversink River, Rondout Reservoir and several feeding stations throughout the area. Highlights of the day included Common and Hooded Mergansers, Belted Kingfishers (3), Common Goldeneye, Pine Siskins, Red-breasted Nuthatches and the bird of the day, EVENING GROSBEAK! The Neversink River was quite birdy. Finding three Belted Kingfishers from Bridgeville to Woodbourne was a bonus! The female near Bridgeville cooperated for photos, but the two males wouldn’t sit still. Bald Eagles were all about, as usual. A nice mixed flock of waterfowl on the river include both mergs, Black and Mallard Ducks and Canada Geese. The Rondout Reservoir surprised me in being almost entirely frozen over near the spillway. In fact the area where birds are usually seen from Grahamsville to the power house was almost totally frozen. In spite of that, 3 Common Goldeneye, 2 Common Mergs and 2 Hooded Mergs remained near the powerhouse. Pine Siskins were seen in low numbers at a couple of feeding stations. Once I reached Sue Rayano’s home on the corner of Cooley Mt. and Smith Roads, things really got going. I immediately saw that she had many American Goldfinches. I had counted nearly forty when another flock flew in. This flock also contained 3 Pine Siskins! As I moved around trying to get better looks at them, I heard a loud warbling twitter. I moved quickly around a spruce to find 6 EVENING GROSBEAKS sitting in a tree. I was able to get many shots of the birds, but it was quite dark out (just prior to snowing heavily). I did get some decent shots though. It was a great morning with some cooperative birds at each stop. Great Birding!
The male Evening Grosbeak just prior to it starting to snow heavily.

The male Evening Grosbeak just prior to it starting to snow heavily.

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