A Clean Sweep of Sea Ducks on Long Island!

Today, Lance Verderame and I birded Long Island.  Specific locations included: Merrick Road, Cammons Pond, Mill Pond, Point Lookout and Jones Beach West End.  We had a fantastic day!  We had many target birds as it was our first trip to Long Island this year. Though we missed a few common species, we got all the most significant targets.  My number one target had a long history.  In my 26 years of birding, I have seen many female KING EIDERS, and a single juvenile male.  I have chased adult males on a number of occasions, without success.  Today, I got my adult male KING EIDER!!!  Along with him, was a juvenile male, only my second ever.  Target after target fell into place.  Black, White-winged and Surf Scoters were all seen.  Both Eiders (including common), Long-tailed and HARLEQUIN DUCK, gave us a clean sweep of the sea ducks!!  We also had two Great Cormorant and many Common Loons.  Greater Scaup numbered in the thousands. Other new year species for me included Pied-billed Grebe, Northern Shoveler, Black-crowned Night-heron, Ipswich Savannah Sparrow, Black-bellied Plover, Sanderling, Dunlin, Ruddy Turnstone, Bonaparte’s Gull, Double-crested Cormorant and Yellow-rumped Warbler. I ended the day adding 17 species to my year list.  Lance did even better than I did with a whopping 32 new species for the year! Our total was 53 species for the day!IMG_2120

My first ever adult male KING EIDER at Point Lookout today!


Five of the seven Harlequin Ducks were saw at Point Lookout today.

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8 Responses to A Clean Sweep of Sea Ducks on Long Island!

  1. Deborah Kral says:

    Awesome, John, congratulations and nice image too! Hoping to get down over the weekend and hope I am lucky!

  2. Karen C Miller says:

    Fantastic day, guys!! Love the King Eider.

  3. Kathleen Ashman says:

    Congratulations to you and Lance on your wonderful day of sea ducks!

  4. Thank you all! The King Eiders have been present for about a month now, so if you go Deb, you should be able to get them. The only tough part is when hundreds (or more) ducks are present in huge rafts. If you stick to it, you’ll get them. Good luck! John

  5. Pat Dechon says:

    I was inspired by your post so my daughter and I took a ride down to Long Island. We couldn’t find the King Eiders, but we wound up with 13 lifers for her and an amazing day at the beach. Thanks for the push to get out there!

  6. Gordon Lam says:

    Glad to hear you finally got your grown up Eider! Lori and I were at Point Lookout that weekend and sadly missed the male. But we did get amazing views of the snowy at west end 2.

  7. Thanks Gordon, this is so strange, I was just thinking about you two yesterday! Glad to hear from you and look forward to our outings this spring! My best to Lori!

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